Felice Bois is a Writer, Author, Actress, Business Entrepreneur and an A’capella Spoken Word Recording Artist whose life challenges as a single mother and a Black woman could no longer go hidden or unspoken. From her trials and victories as a single mother with a troubled teen, she tells her story with a strong message of hope for other mothers and teenagers through her creative and powerful vocal delivery of the Spoken Word.
Femme Lounge had a chat with this amazing woman who believes in making a difference in the world and is walking the talk.
FAMILY AND BACKGROUND
Okay, I’m originally from Oakland, California. I’m forty-one years old. My birth name is Felicia Boissiere (African American and Creole background). My pen name (now legal name) is Felice Bois. I added a middle name to my original birth name Felice Bois because it’s easy to spell for one thing (nobody ever pronounces my last name right), easy to remember, similar to my original birth name and have the same meanings. Felicia and Felice both mean ‘happy’. I feel that way most of the time. Let’s see, I am a mother of two children: a son who is twenty-two years old, and a daughter who is ten years old. I’m single, heterosexual (straight) and happy. I married at an early age, divorced early. Didn’t know what I was doing. I am a believer in Jesus Christ. Grew up Baptist. My parents are living, but I did grow up in a single parent household with my younger sister and brother, I’m the oldest of three.
WHAT MODERN DAY BLACK MOMMA IS ALL ABOUT
She keeps going she never gives up. Even when it looks ugly and she knows it. When it looks great, she’s still pushing. The Modern Day Black Momma is the history and modern day struggles and achievements of mothers. It’s not about doing something different. It’s about what we continue to do to move forward. And that is we never give up even when it’s ugly. Particularly black women although all women from all backgrounds can relate to most of our issues. Whether it’s raising children or fulfilling an accomplishment; however, there is a distinct difference between being a woman and being both a woman and a mother. I tried accomplishing that distinction in my poem Modern Day Black Momma. And, I stand on it with my trademark record label Modern Day Black Momma Records.
Great pain! And, a troubled teen. While raising my teenage son, who happened to be a troubled teen at that time, I felt insecure as a mother. I felt like what I had to give was not enough. While I was trying to meet his needs, as a mother, take him to church (we even got baptized together :0)) you know — make sure he had the kind of clothes he wanted, selecting the right schools, prepare him for college, help choose the right friends, explore real life responsibilities and adulthood; all while, I’m really not being heard. My voice was not loud enough. All my sacrifices I made to make my child happy went in one ear out of the other. I was hurting deeply inside. I needed to voice my feelings. I felt like mothers needed to be heard. What about us? When our kids hurt, we hurt too. I was curious to know were there any other women out there with similar issues? Here we are breaking our backs to give our children all we can and some of them just don’t want to listen. I understand that environmental issues definitely play a role in our kids’ growth these days, but sadly, some fall short too soon and eventually led astray by fools in the street. If I could just paint a picture of who a mother really is, how would I describe her? And, that is how Modern Day Black Momma was born.
WHAT DO YOU HOPE TO ACHIEVE WITH IT?
First I want people to understand who the Modern Day Black Momma is, once we understand her journey — then we can understand the children who become rebellious and grow to become criminals. Very important that people understand that without a doubt in my mind. People need to take a deeper and personal look inside the issues of many mother’s rich and poor, all over the world, while raising children who later become rebellious. When all hell breaks loose, because of a rebellious child, how is the mother’s social life and personal life affected? How does she maintain her sanity and pull through? Especially mother’s who make sacrafices (give up dreams, college, the fast lane, etc.) for their children — to be mothers.
ALBUMS TILL DATE
On May 20, 2009 I published my first album: Gen Eyes Wide is the albums name. Genre: Spoken Word, Self-Help, and Spiritual are how it is categorized. I wrote it to motivate, inspire and esteem our young people, particularly African American male youth between the ages of twelve to twenty-four years old. African American male youth have a higher rate of being imprisoned before the age of thirty in the United States. Gen Eyes Wide was published under my record label Modern Day Black Momma Records.
My biggest challenge right now is finding avenues to share the work that I believe God gave me to share in this album. Since my record label is an indie label, the label has to sponsor everything, from administrative expenses to marketing expenses. The label is slowly progressing.
MOST FULFILLING MOMENT ON THIS JOURNEY.
Seeing it realized. I can’t believe it. I actually wrote something I’m proud to share with the world. Had I known this was going to be my journey, I would have began a long time ago. I guess the truth is, I did began the journey, just hadn’t written it until now.
At this time, I have no mentors. I’m learning the ropes on my own. Which is cool with me. It has made me stronger. I do know people I can lean on (celebrities) but the last thing I want is to ask for a hand out. At least that’s how I feel. I just do what I got to do with the gifts and talents God gave me and rest will follow.
GREATEST STRENGTHS THAT HAVE BEEN OF HELP
Getting around fear and rejection are my greatest strengths. When you have a vision planted in your heart from God, you have to face those fears. Fear is one of the reasons some people never get started on a very worthy journey.
SIGNIFICANT LIFE LESSONS LEARNT
Nobody will do your work for you. If you know you got it, use it (your talents, all of them). Can you write? Can you make people laugh? Do you inspire people? Are you good at anything? Whatever you believe in YOU have to make it come true. Don’t wait on anybody to make your dreams come true for you. True, we have to network with other people, but having charisma and confidence will encourage people to believe in your dream too. Just do it and don’t look back.
SUCCESS ESSENTIALS FOR TODAY’S YOUNG WOMEN
Believe in God and have a real relationship with him. Without God you are nothing, regardless of your achievements. Without him or somebody’s prayers and help along the way, you are nothing. Have realistic goals. If you want to be a doctor, plan early. If you want to sing, plan early. If you want to teach plan early. Explore your interest, plan and go for it. Expect to fail at something(s) and get back up. It’s okay to fail and not be great at everything. That says quite a bit about who you are and you grow as a person. Have passion for what you do on a daily basis — without it, I don’t believe you can give your all to your craft. As I said earlier, charisma and confidence is key. As long as you believe in yourself, people will listen and your dreams can become fruition.
BECKONING OF THE FUTURE
Well, right now I’m working on my second album, my first book, due to be released Fall of 2010. A few new monologues from the Gen Eyes Wide album. Lock Down Den is my first monologue that includes actors (no dialogue between the actors). I play the voice. Um, let’s see…hope to produce a few plays as well based on the Gen Eyes Wide album. Do a little acting. You know all the bits and crannies you got to do to get your work out there.
ONE THING YOU KNOW FOR SURE
I’m on the right journey. I know I’ve been called to do the work I’m currently pursuing and that is to help make the world a better place and share the Word of God.
MORE ABOUT YOUR WORK
You can visit my website at: http://www.moderndayblackmomma.com. Full stream audio tracks are online for my fans to listen to. Or, download the MP3 single or album from anyone of these online retailers. http://www.itunes.com/felicebois or www.amazon.com, http://www.cdbaby.com/cd/felicebois, http://www.amazon.com including my website. I also have a fan page on Facebook at http://www.tinyurl.com/felicefanpage.