Street Cred




Sometimes I’m scared that my son will get famous when he gets out of prison. Rapping is the only business I know where being an ex-con is actually advantageous. I don’t want him going in that direction. I feel like if God gave him that talent, he should use it for good. Rapping is fine, mind ya. But the content must be changed. I can’t even listen to a whole song sometimes ’cause I can picture God being disappointed and I just can’t take it. Even when I’m mad at Him, as I often am.

Jess can sing and write songs, too. That’s where I wish he’d spend his energy. But if he’s going to get famous, I hope he gets a stable life first. A stable MINDSET. I hear too many stories of tragic celebrity deaths, crime sprees, insanity. Scary stuff.

He’s always been outrageously creative and bright. When he was only three he said to me one day, “Mommy? Can I use your imagination in case I want to save mine for later?”  Still makes me smile. I told him, of course, than imagination knows no bounds and never runs dry. I guess he believed me.

Also, if he does make it big in the music industry, it’ll affect his whole family. I often think, when hearing about yet another crazy stunt some famous person does that I’m glad I don’t have to make my mistakes in public. I’ve done hideous things in my life. Stupid, rotten, ugly, just plain dumb…all the yo-yo diets I’ve been on and weight that went up and down. Parenting errors and family fights. Geez. I don’t want paparazzi on my lawn or “journalists” digging up dirt on my family. (’cause there is plenty of it).

If there is one thing I’ve learned from having sons in prison, it’s how news reporters like to spin the truth into something more sensational than what actually happened. Or give their opinion rather than the facts. Legitimate newspapers and real TV news channels do that and the public is quick to form their own uninformed opinions. I mean, who do they think they are? I could go on for days on that subject.  So indignant, I am! 🙂 Seriously, the truth is hard enough.

Right now I’ll bet Jess is in his dorm with a buncha guys sitting on their bunks listening to his newest song. It’s how he survives all the pain and stress in his life. Ever since he was about a year old, this is how he has coped. And, believe me, there was a lot of pressure on that little guy.

I remember distinctly his dad and I sitting in the front seat of a car with our baby Jess between us, arguing as usual, oblivious to the damage we were doing to him. Selfish. And suddenly he threw one chubby arm around each of our necks and started crooning. He’d get louder and louder till he’d drown out all the yelling. Till we NOTICED. Regrets.

During school conferences Jesse’s teachers would often reveal that my little man was a bit hyper and that he was a great kid. “He really doesn’t act ‘bad,'” one teacher said, “he just can’t stop singing!”

Bend but don’t break, baby boy. His music was a gift to Jesse, a gift God gave himself, and a gift to those who love my son.  But fame is still something I fear.

On Friday my Jess (aka Lil Yea) will be 27 years old. Happy birthday, precious son!

In honor of his birthday I am going to share his first songs here and one that he did last year. Hope you enjoy! I am SO very proud of my boy.

Here he is at 17:

Again at 17:

Last year:




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