|Bobby Brown with wife Alicia Etheredge-Brown (Source: Essence Magazine)|
By Brenda Alexander
If you haven’t watched the second part of the Bobby Brown Story on BET, get your tissues ready, because 80% of the film was nothing but sadness.
Somebody died literally every 10 minutes. In between the deaths of close loved ones, he struggled hard to kick his addictions, even suffering a stroke and apparent overdose. Bobby had 9 damn lives okay. But, God had a plan for his life and after all he’s endured, he’s still standing, stronger and wiser with another chance to “get it right.”
For most, it was easy to go along with the negative portrayal of him. Not that the media created that narrative of him based upon nothing – his choices and actions aided heavily. But, being in the public eye, there’s little room for redemption and the world watches and picks apart your every move as you journey through life’s ups and downs, making it more complex to stay on track. With as much money and access as he had, that helped none. Reading his memoir, Every Little Step, a few years back, and watching his life on film, I’m amazed at how he’s been able to transform for the better.
I’ve grown to love and appreciate Brown’s ability to be honest and unafraid despite people’s judgments. Throughout his trails, he could have easily averted blame elsewhere: his upbringing, witnessing horrific deaths, being taken advantage of by record labels and management, the drug and alcohol use. But, he didn’t. He made it known that his life would be lived on his accord and in due time, he’d progress into the man intended.
The greatest hit he took, was Whitney’s downfall. Little-to-no-one saw it fit for them to be together, especially spectators, and Whitney’s family and friendship circle. They unfairly blame him for all things bad that occurred in her life, even after Whitney (and her brother) revealed that she took drugs on her own merit. But, it’s been easier for them to place fault elsewhere than to accept the truth and that they also could have enabled her during tough times. During their marriage, Bobby stayed loyal in the sense that he never spoke out against Whitney’s circle despite the troubling treatment he received. It wasn’t until years after their divorce, that he slowly began to tell his side. Even then, people felt the audacity of him sharing HIS story. But it didn’t stop there.
|Whitney & Bobby|
There’s something purely disheartening about the supposed lengths they went to in showing their disgust for him. The film shared how they treated him like a stranger off the street at Whitney’s funeral, having security ask him and his “entourage” (his children), to move from the family pews several times. They’ve disrespected him dozens of times in the media despite him never uttering one bad word about them. And to add insult to injury, they tried to keep him out of Bobbi Kristina’s medical decision planning when she was left in a coma after her accidental drowning in 2015. I love Nippy like the rest of the world (actually more), but we can’t continue on with the “Bobby did this” shenanigans.
Still, Bobby has taken everything in stride and the fact that he’s been able to overcome such unimaginable hurdles is one to be celebrated. While watching the second half of the movie, my mom said something to the effect of, “It’s a shame he had to go through all of that to get to this point of peace.” I view things a little differently. On one hand, it is sad. Losing 6 close relatives within 6 years of one another, two being a woman you loved and your child, and in similar fashion, is devastating. Years of destruction to your body with substances and witnessing two close friends murdered in front of you is traumatizing too. But, there’s something to be said about what going through that type of pain and making it onto the other side does to you. At this point, I’m sure that there’s nothing that can happen now that he’s ill-prepared for. He had an innate will to get and stay clean, and thankfully, had people in his life, including his new wife and children, to help him through.
Bobby and new wife Alicia with their children (Source: IG)
The Bobby Brown Story is not one of pure happiness. But the ending segways into new beginnings. Everyone’s past plays a part into the essence of who they become, and I like the “new” Bobby. He’s able to appreciate his life and blessings now due to the amount of mistakes and losses he’s come in contact with. We watched his wife Alicia help him rebuild his career, sober, and maintain stability independently of NE and outside of Whitney (whom we saw were codependent together). He turned tragedy into triumph by building a safe house for domestic violence victims after the loss of his daughter, and God has blessed him with two additional baby girls. Plus, his culinary business is booming!
|Bobby Brown Foods|