FROM BRIANNA: The Meaning Behind #ForRoy and #ForMinnie
Written By: Brianna Arps
TRIGGER WARNING: Loss and grief.
If you know or follow me personally on social media, you might've noticed two particular hashtags I use to sign off almost every post these days: #ForRoy and #ForMinnie. Who are they? Mr. Roy Lee Brown and Mrs. Minnie Lee Brown are my late grandparents, to whom MOODEAUX is dedicated.
My Papa left us far too soon...two weeks and two months before our official launch on October 1, 2021. While my hero — the first entrepreneur I ever met — wasn't able to celebrate with us, I know to this day he's proud I stuck with it. My Mama departed this earthly realm only 16 months later on November 21, 2022, never recovering from the heartbreak of losing her soulmate.
Growing up, RLB made sure I never went without. Whether it be a handkerchiefs reserved for drying sad eyes, bear hugs as reminders that I'm loved, more than a few dollars "just in case" or songs of praise whenever Papa's Baby did anything well, he showed me he'd happily give me the world before I could even begin to ask. Following his example, I always felt prepared. RLB taught me the weight of a solid reputation solely from being present, and as our bond tightened, how to maneuver through life at full speed with humility, class, self-respect...
I got my personality and sense of humor from MLB. We'd laugh for days about our inside jokes and speak in made-up languages only we could understand. Those Granger women from East Saint Louis were built Ford tough, y'all, but my little lady came complete with the sweetest marshmallow insides. Two things I appreciate most is... 1) She taught me a lot about being a leader — in particular, never letting anyone undermine my ability to think freely and express my own opinions. And 2) MLB *always* encouraged my curiosity, even when it came at the expense of me "borrowing" all her nice things LOL.
Now, with time circling back on the moment they both gained their wings, I'm feeling lost again. Painfully still, and forever will be, missing my absolute two favorite humans. I can't help wondering if this grief thing gets easier? Lord knows, I have my days. But! July 15 is Papa Brown's day, and November 21 is Mama Brown's day!
As long as I have air in my lungs and a beat in my chest, the whole entire world will know it. We're going to do all the things to continue honoring your legacy, "Old People." I hope you're ready up there.