Hey y’all. I'm Jamila. I'm a human being determined to make the most out of this lifetime and striving to help others do the same. My mission is to use my life in generous service of the spiritual liberation and absolute happiness of all humankind! I'm a writer and coach,.
I grew up in Charlotte, North Carolina, with one older sister (we're 13 months apart!) My father is an artist and activist, and my mother spent 50 years as a pediatric nurse. Ethnically, I'm Black and Puerto Rican - a true child of the African diaspora. I left Charlotte at 17 to attend the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. After graduating college in 2011, I moved to DC, then Brooklyn, and (most recently) Los Angeles, until coming back home in January of this year to help my father fight cancer (which is now in partial remission!)
I have a part-time job doing social media for a social justice non-profit whose primary focus is helping faith communities across the South become more inclusive and affirming of LGBTQ people. My focus (in this job and elsewhere) is to use virtual spaces as a springboard for the development of real life, value-creating, healing, transformative human relationships. My partner lives in New York (pursuing a Master’s degree), and we’re navigating the challenges of long-distance lovin’ while working in our respective corners of the world to become the best version of ourselves.
Outside of what I “do,” I am proud of who I am.
I’m a critical thinker.
I’m a generous listener.
I’m a courageous lover.
I’m a good friend.
I try hard.
I love creating sacred spaces and small rituals. I am deeply moved by many things, and I allow both joy and grief to bring me to tears in equal parts. I am always searching for how to get closer to a more authentic self, trusting that doing so allows me to live a full, rich life by being more deeply connected to myself and the world.
I value human relationships above everything else. I have a badass tribe of kindred and chosen family. I want people to feel as loved as I do. The love I get from my tribe is unlike any I've seen elsewhere. It is so, so special, and I am eternally grateful.
5 Fun Facts about Me:
1. I’ve been to Burning Man 5 times!
I camp with Que Viva Camp, a badass team of artists and activists who do racial justice, art-based programs. I love dressing up and dancing until my legs hurt and watching the sunrise over the mountains with people who aren't afraid to hug you like they mean it or hold eye contact for a conversation. I learn something absolutely profound about myself (and the world) very single time I go. In 2016, I gave a TedX talk on radical imagination for hundreds of dusty hippies! Burning Man, although admittedly lacking in racial diversity, has opened my eyes to the vast Universe of endless possibility. It is where I learned to tap into the power of pleasure, presence, and play.
2. I’m a Theatre Artist
I acted in plays and musicals all throughout high school, and switched over to directing once I got to college, where I double-majored in Dramatic Arts and Sociology. I love theatre because I love learning how people navigate and make sense of their lives. I am fascinated by the human experience. I have a (not quite extinguished) dream of running a company that produces performances that inspire people to live in the world with more curiosity and compassion.
3. I’m a party thrower.
Throwing parties is an art practice for me. It is how I express my gratitude for being. It is how I offer healing to my communities. Throwing parties allows me to make space for myself to exist fully. Creating intentional, beautiful, spiritually charged spaces in which people can be authentic and joyful together is my life's work. Party throwing is as sacred and precious to me as any other thing I do.
4. I dropped out of grad school, and have no regrets.
With a dream of being a full-time writer (and a desperate need to develop some consistency around my writing practice), I decided to pursue an MFA in Creative Writing in 2015 at CalArts, a private arts school right outside of Los Angeles. After a year, I decided not to return to the program because 1) Tuition was too damn high, and 2) The starving artist lifestyle was quickly threatening to compromise my joy. Although I still have dreams of pursuing higher education, I determined not to live a life of financial slavery for the sake of institutional affiliation.
5. I love, love, love to travel. It is one of my lifelong dreams to visit every continent in the world, and to see as many countries as I can. The world is so vast, and human potential is infinite. There are so many possibilities, and I want to see them all!
Thank you for taking the time to read a little bit more about who I am. I'd love to know you! Drop me a comment and let me know who you are (and who you're becoming)