(Image source: http://static.independent.co.uk/)

When Lemonade premiered, I wasn’t glued to my television waiting for “Beysus” to deliver me from a weekend night at Williams. I was out with my girlfriends, taking sips of homemade mixes and making some sort of dance formation to 80s throwbacks and distant chatter. I had pretty much written off the latest project from Beyonce as a marketing stunt and didn’t see it as reason enough to give up my weekend for it. I stand by my decision to enjoy my weekend for myself but I am more than happy that I eventually set aside the time to view the visual album. The message behind the project was an important one and I needed the reminder.

There are many reasons why I appreciate this visual album, which is just as much a love poem to Black women and Black womanhood, but one of the main ones is Beyonce's commentary on Love, nuanced enough to uncover the layers of sacrifice, beauty, pain, and self-reflection deeply embedded within it. When I watched “Hold Up” I saw myself in her role, a scorned woman playfully tearing apart at the object of her betrayal, laughing through the pain, and when I kept pushing the rewind button on “All Night” I saw just how damn beautiful it is to be in love with someone who is fully here for you. Add that to the fact that it was a Black woman, one who has historically had her right to humanity constantly snatched from her, embodying the many facets that come with feeling and being a human, I was both proud to see representation to which I could relate.  

After watching Lemonade, here are my main takeaways...

Lemonade is for the little girls who grew into women, carrying with them a fascination for the world that couldn’t help but be tinged by fear and hesitation after being stung so many times after laying bare their desires and vulnerability. Lemonade is for the women navigating the love, loss, deception, and healing which are all too frequent in the relationships which require giving up all of one’s self for a chance at that thing often called happiness mixed with equal parts freedom. Lemonade is for Black women, young, old, and every age in-between, who were told that their beauty was something less, something inferior to the conventional standard of beauty which so frequently centers around European aesthetics and traits, and who were made to feel invisible because of it. And I am happy that we all got to have a taste.