Amber

Because I want MORE

What do I want? I want MORE. MORE time. MORE support. MORE opportunities. MORE for me.

Last week while I was on a play date, a friend asked me why I had started my company MORE. And I gave her the most authentic answer that I could. I said because I want MORE for me.

I didn't have a chance to go into details because we were with our toddlers, but I wanted to. I wanted to tell her that I, just like her, was in pursuit of MORE.

More time to nurture my relationship with my husband and opportunities to look beyond the shadow that I see during our baby handoffs. I want more chances to talk with him. To tell him I love him and to hug him until I decide to let go. I want to make sure he knows every minute of the day that we are in this thing together.

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I want to be able to enjoy my son's stages instead of wishing pieces of them away. I want to be there, every time, present and engaged. I want to be the one who instills in him the confidence he's going to need to navigate through the rocky path that's in front of him. I want to hear him say out loud that he is beautiful, smart, special and loved and then know deep down that he believes it. I want to give him the very best — the best education, the best experiences and the best of me. I want to be able to say YES at 11 a.m. on a Tuesday if he asks me to play Spider-Man.

I want more creative freedom to figure out what I'm capable of doing. For the majority of my life, I've spent my time helping other people build their dreams. I want the opportunity to build mine.  I want to be able to step out on my own and release something into the world without my imposter syndrome holding me back.

I want more genuine friends. People who refer to me as passionate instead of aggressive. I want to find more people who, just like me, are trying to be the good in the world that they want to see. I want to find my tribe.

I want to be around to see others find their MORE. Like Stephanie, who is one of the most brilliant, genuine and kind-hearted people I've ever known. I want her to find her happy place, and I want to see her thrive. I want to see her create the space to cook with her son, write freely and share her wits with the world. And when I tell her that I love her and will always be here to support her; I want her to know that I mean it.

I want Joy, who lost her daughter Elli several years ago, to find solace knowing that Elli lives on. I want to be around when she finds the space to tell her story. And I want to be the first person in line at her book release party, waiting patiently, with a smile, a few tears and a big hug.

I want Nailah, who's so incredibly beautiful and strong to feel supported as she creates more safe spaces for women of color black girls, in particular — to be free and vulnerable and to grow. The work she is doing is so important. So needed and so brave. I don't want her ever to feel like she's doing it alone.

But most of all, what I want is MORE Spaces. MORE Spaces where we can be authentic, vulnerable, feel safe and be brave enough to keep going. Space to be the husbands, wives, mothers, business owners, working professionals, family members, friends and humans we want to be. MORE Spaces is what I want for you and me.

To MORE,

Amber

We. You + Me.

WE, me and you and you and me, in 14 years, have been through so much.  

 
 

WE have loved, lost, fought, won, fell, and got back up.

WE have learned to love through good and bad times. When faced with obstacles, we decided to stand up straight, hold hands, and plow through them together.

WE, not just you, and not just me, have built a life together that is exactly what WE wanted it to be.

WE are in love more today than we were 14 years ago, and to this day, not just in public but in the way we live each day.

WE, Kai-Saun, are meant to be . . . together.

WE, not you or me, decided to forgo the "big" wedding so that we could save our money - choosing instead to get married in our living room.

WE, bought our wedding rings off of Amazon and our flowers from Costco because we knew that what mattered most was how we felt, and that as long as I had you, and you had me, that WE would live happily every after.

WE ignored the chatter as people questioned our decisions, our faith, our resistance and decided to do what was best for us.

WE decided to forgo a honeymoon so that we could take my niece to Disneyland after experiencing trials that even an adult woman couldn't get through.

WE lay there as she played her video games, smiling and holding hands, thanking God silently for making you my man and me your woman.

 

WE were just happy to be together.

WE went on to have a beautiful baby, and although his entrance into this world was crazy, we stayed there next to him, promising never to leave - EVER.

WE watched as our fathers moved farther and farther away, crying to one another each day, making a pact, no matter what happens, never to leave.

WE stuck by each other as more and more people began to go. During what felt like some of our weakest times, we held our own and, as always, chose to grow.

WE, yes, Kai-Saun Tskei, held on as things got harder and harder, believing that as long as we had each other, we had ENOUGH.

WE kept going and going like the energizer bunny even after knowing that we were alone.

 

We made a beautiful little boy. 

WE love our son. He's the reason we are here, and with every ounce of ourselves, we give back to him.

WE forgo date nights, vacations, money, and time so that HE can have a better life.

WE know that the world is not what we want it to be, yet we keep pushing and giving so we can make it better.

WE, not you and not me, know that we already "have it all" as long as we are together.

WE don't care about appearances, clothes, cars, shoes, houses, bank accounts, fancy this, or fancy that because it is you AND it is me that bring real happiness.

WE have grown so much. You have watched me become a wife and a mother, and I have watched you become the most astounding husband and father.

 

WE are stronger together.

WE have grown despite our circumstances from workers to business owners, and at the end of each day, WE can say that we are freaking KILLING it.

WE, not a nanny, not daycare, and not a stranger but you and I are raising the strongest, smartest, wisest, kindest, friendliest, most genuine, and amazing kid on this planet. We are choosing to give him everything we have and MORE.

WE strive to be our son's role models, not some guy who's 7'6".

WE do not exchange gifts on anniversaries and holidays because we know there are no materials worthy of the time I get to spend with you each day.

WE wake up every day with smiles because marriage is our utopia.

WE, you and me, Kai-Saun, is what REAL love looks like, and I promise you that my heart will stay true even after I fade away.

WE, a combination of you and me, are the true definition of always and forever.

Happy anniversary, Kai-Saun. I love you more today than I did yesterday. 

Love always & forever,