Today I watched the homegoing service (funeral) for Whitney Houston. It was the most beautiful and touching funeral that I have ever seen for a celebrity. The church choir, speakers, and other singers were phenomenal. It had an intimate feel and I felt like I was a part of it, even though I was at home watching it on my televison. The people who spoke who about her included Tyler Perry, Kevin Costner, Bebe and Cece Winans, and Clive Davis who shared funny and heart-warming stories about her that only a friend or someone who really cared about you could tell. I learned things about her that I never knew, such as her generosity, sensitive, and how In spite of her tragic death, it was not somber. It uplifted me and left me with a warm feeling inside knowing that Whitney had finally found peace at last. As her life shows, the things we desire or covet the most, such as beauty, fame, and fortune cannot make you happy if it is not already there. You can have as much plastic surgery as money can buy but if you don’t beautify and take care of your inside, then it is all for naught. Beauty does come from within and if you don’t feel it on the inside, it doesn’t matter what the world says. Whitney was physically beautiful but insecure about her looks. Kevin Costner talked about this during an interview about the film, The Bodyguard. He talked about her apprehensiveness and reluctance to take the part of Rachel Marron. At that time, she had the world at her feet and numerous Grammy Awards and accolades under her belt but still wondered if she was good enough to play the role of a woman who was much like herself. The woman who was known as the “Voice,” and who was the first black woman to grace the cover of Seventeen magazine wondered this!
It was those insecurities that may have ultimately led her down the path to self-destruction, and made her take that first toke, pill, or sip, or surround herself with people who didn’t always have her best interest at heart. We can all blame Bobby Brown and others, but as I thought about her during this past week, in the end it was ultimately her choice. In the end the choices we make are our own doing or undoing. I heard critics say that hers was a wasted life and much of the media touted the negative aspects of her life. And let’s face it, in a media obsessed society such as this, stories about death, scandal, and destruction are front page news and ratings boosters. This past week seven of Whitney’s albums dominated the first seven slots of iTunes. In the past week alone, she probably sold more albums in death, than her last album, 2009’s, I Look to You, which I thought was pretty good. I disagree with the critics, because her life was a testament to many things and an inspiration. She brought joy and love to millions with her music. She showed us how to be graceful and elegant and later in life showed us the harmful effects substance abuse. She shared her vulnerabilities with us and her love for God. She showed us how to be down-to-earth in spite of the fame. But I think the most important lesson she taught us was to get back up no matter how many times you fall down.
Just like all of us, I’m sure if Whitney had the opportunity, she would have gone back and changed some things. But remember, each new day we’re given is a chance to make things right or start anew. She no longer has that opportunity but we do. Losing Whitney felt like losing a sister. I felt a closeness to her, because she went through a lot of things that we all of go through. So, I decided not to mourn her life but celebrate it and honor her spirit by taking care of myself and creating my own happiness and starting from within. It’s a struggle, but I’m determined to see it through to the end.
Goodnight Whitney Elizabeth Houston aka Nippy. Now you’re apart of a heavenly choir that will sing for all time, in a place where you will never grow old. God gifted us with your beautiful voice for a little while, but now you have been called back home.
My beautiful sister in the spirit, how I grieve for you on Earth
Because I will never hear that beautiful voice or laugh live again
Only immortalized in video now, forever encased in celluloid
My sister in the spirit, how I rejoice that you no longer will suffer in a world to cruel for the sweetness in your soul.