“There are so many moving parts with owning your own business, so many variables. At any given moment, I have to cater to customer inquiries/issues, pack orders, order inventory, run the social media, answer press and stylists requests; all while trying to grow the business,” she said.
“The pieces to me are secondary to the woman wearing them. What will make you feel good? Catch light in the sung to cast a glow on your skin? Make you take a second look in the mirror as you pass by or pull out your camera for selfies? It’s about the experience and what really speaks to me at the time and not about trends,” she said.
The other special thing about Lost Queens is that each piece is named after a notable Black woman while 10% of proceeds go back into the community for tuition assistance, activism, domestic violence and more. According to Anxiety and Depression Association of America, depression affects approximately 14.8 million American adults, or about 6.7 percent of the U.S. population age 18 and older in a given year. Depression is something that Merriman lives with and boldly faces. Sometimes talks of mental health within the black community goes unnoticed; but Merriman believes that there are a few things people can do protect their mental health.
“Create a safe space for yourself. I throw myself into my work when my mind starts to turn against me. Have a support system, at least one person you can be completely honest with,” “I’m still struggling with figuring it all out for myself but understand that it is necessary to get the professional help needed,”
“A lot of times Black women are taught to be strong, so we hide our pain and sweep it under the rug. We’re not always knowledgeable about mental health and brush it off. We’re told to pray and not really seek a doctor’s help,”
"You can’t serve others if you don’t first serve yourself. Do your personal best, but don’t beat yourself up if you don’t get EVERYTHING done,” she said. “Empires aren’t built overnight. Don’t let your mind talk you out of opportunities or make you feel that you have no support. Just do the work and trust the process,”
somewhere in a sushi restaurant.
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