ABC I love me by Miriam Muhammad is a wonderfully told and artistically illustrated story of empowerment and self-love for young children. The story depicts two main characters who happen to be dripping in chocolate, "melanated" skin tones. The story is dedicated to the author’s son and every black and brown girl and boy. Starting with “A is for afro”, then “B is for beautiful” is a great place to start considering the strong connection persons of color have to their hair and the “Black is beautiful” movement. Besides encouraging children to have positive character traits such as “confident”, “fearlessness”, and “talented”, they author also encourages the youth to express emotions such as “joy,” recognize one’s “royalty,” and embrace wholesome values such as gratitude, creating healthy habits for eating and exercise, and being open to trying new things.
Eleven-year old, Olivia Lauren, co-owner of Lauren Simone Pubs and author, shares her perspective of the book in the video below
This book teaches children to affirm themselves early on. Being an adult can be very taxing, hence the reason the "I don't want to adult today" saying has become popularized. There are so many expectations, responsibilities, and expenses. The social clock and body clock create tension and anxiety. It is very important that children are taught they are able to overcome challenges and believe they are worthy and capable in order to successfully navigate adulthood. Everyone has insecurities and fears about what they are able to do. It is even more challenging for people of stigmatized or disenfranchised groups, who do not always have role models, mentors or representation in the home, society or literature.
Growing up learning how to love yourself, feeling safe and loved in your environment, enables you to be a happy, healthy, compassionate, and wise adult. When the world is filled with people who are affirmed in who they are, we’ll see more compassion and kindness on a much grander scale. I don’t know about you, but I absolutely want to live in world like that.
Help your beautiful brown skin child develop a strong, healthy sense of self through ABC I love Me. Teach your child about affirmations: I am beautiful, I am confident, I am determined, I am victorious. Take our words for it, check it out yourself on Amazon.