“maybe dawn is not in the sunlight every morning, maybe it is in the middle of the night when you hold yourself against the darkness. you are sitting quietly and feeling yourself break apart yet knowing this hour, this very hour, you are finding yourself. maybe this is your dawn. maybe for you, the first light appears in the middle of the darkness, when pain clings to your throat. sometimes dawn visits you at night.”
— Ijeoma Umebinyuo
I was watching The Therapist with Dr. Siri Sat Nam Singh on Viceland with Brooklyn rapper, Joey Bada$$. As usual, Dr. Sing takes the person through their childhood to where they are today, the Pro Era member was no exception. Joey spoke about his short childhood (ending at the age of five), his come up in the rap game, his impatience and ambition, the trauma associated with the death of Pro Era member, Capital Steez, and Joey’s heart.
The therapy session is longer than the minutes given for air time. Nevertheless, we get an intimate look at the Badmon who wears “his heart on his sleeve.” During the therapy session, Dr. Singh asks Joey to bring his hands to heart-center for a meditation and describe what he feels. The “Devasted” rapper opened his eyes and replied that it was dark and that he did not feel or see anything.
By the end of the therapy session, the 22-year-old Joey Bada$$ was asked to go back to his heart-center and connect with the experiences, and life with that of five-year-old Jo-Vaughn. To be there with himself. Dr. Singh then asks the rapper to come back, and then again. Joey told him to hold on because Joey wasn’t ready to come back.
That hour, that moment, Joey sat quietly and found himself in the darkness of his heart. How did he feel? The rapper described it as “blissful.” Dr. Singh recommended that he allow that five-year-old to live, again. To go through life and accept the good. Appreciate the experiences like a five-year-old. Revel in the new found light that broke through the darkness. When Dr. Singh drops jewels, the sound of a meditation bowl being hit would sound, like when Flex drop bombs on dope bars. The sound could be heard when Dr.Singh told Joey these things.
Ijeoma Umebinyuo is dope. Joey Bada$$ is dope. For me, seeing her words manifest in 22 minutes on screen with a spiritual shorty from the Stuy was catalytically dope.
Some of us are looking for answers and searching for lights yet avoiding the darkness. I also think the darkness is just as important as the dawn.
I am wishing you all pleasant experiences and sending positive energy—it’s the Pro Era way…Word to Joey Bada$$ and ’em.
RIP Capital Steez