I recall the first time I was introduced to Tahiera Monique Brown at a women’s networking lunch where she was the guest speaker. As this beautiful woman shared a glimpse into her story, she held a piece of paper that she referred to often as if it were glued to her hands. I would later find out that these notes were essential as she was struggling with some lingering effects from the perpetrator who attempted to take her life years before.
This stranger had held her family hostage for over two years, where they endured the unthinkable. Each day passed in a reign of terror as the everyday world around them continued as usual. Knowing she had to save her children, for Brown this fight was not an option even if the result would be losing her life. Defying all odds, she would live to see the guilty verdict as she continued to face her trails head-on.
Focused on the reality of her world and all the pain she endured, one day Brown wandered into a church looking to make some sense of it all. The love that she felt growing up with her grandparents in the country was true. What was the truth? Had she been forsaken? As she sat there quietly, a priest approached her and asked what was wrong. In a spirit of love, he empathized with her pain and softly asked her what was she going to do with the life she fought so hard to keep. He encouraged her to look at the blessings in her life with a heart of gratitude and soon as will see the world through a new lens.
As she began to heal her heart, Brown could now share her story. What others tried to destroy her is now the catalyst for her passion as a beacon of hope to others. Once voiceless herself, she shares her story as a speaker and hosts a show where she highlights the stories of others, giving them a pathway to reclaim their unique voice.
During our last visit, I asked Brown a few questions to get her insight on what it meant to think about love first.
What do you think of when you think of being an everyday hero?
When I think of an everyday hero, I think of a person who in spite of the odds against them find a way out. In the wake of danger, they face it head on, and after it all passes, the story is not about them. It is about the ones they loved and the ones they rescued.
Are there any particular challenges you faced or experience that changed your perspective to consider others and make a difference?
As a young child I was left behind to live in the country with my grandparent. By the age of 5, I worked as a farmer picking cotton, chucking corn, pulling beans, picking pecans. We lived in a shack with an outhouse in the back, but there was a lot of love. When I reached my teens, I was reunited and lived with my parents, but they both died very young. My father died in a car accident and my mother at the age of 40 of multiple strokes. As the oldest, I was left to care for my younger siblings, including my sister with special needs. I do not remember a true childhood.
How do you think about love first in what you do today?
Every morning I say a prayer before I lift my head off of my pillow. I get ready to face a day of uncertainty with my sister with special needs, whom I lovingly call my “boss.” I consider my friends and family and make up my mind that this is one more day that I am going to give my all to serve first my lord and savior. Then I prepare to face the day knowing that I am giving the best that I can to
What advice would you give others about being that light they are destined to be?
A light that flickers in the darkest hour is a much needed light, but love and kindness will find its way to you when you whisper a word of encouragement. Like a newborn baby that turns its head toward the sound of his mother’s voice, so will a man who needs a word of praise and peace.
To learn more, visit tahieramoniquebrown.com/my-
Tags: November 2016