Mia Fleming—a former TV news anchor/reporter and current show host/producer—writes of a young Black girl named Zoe whose self-love and confidence are built up at home by her empowering mother (and loving pups Marley and Beans).
However, that self-love and confidence are put to the test when Zoe takes them out into the world and is met with shaming questions about her hair, skin, and polka dotted shoes. In a moment of humiliation, Zoe wishes only to
hide; that is, until she remembers the voice of her mother which quickly turns into her voice as she stands up for her glorious, wonderful self.
Fleming and her high school-sweetheart husband have been attempting to conceive for several years. Through the struggle of infertility, Fleming has named her main character Zoe (which means life) in honor of the child that has not yet been born. She has said, “This may be the only Zoe I have the chance to birth, and it's giving me life by being able to finally share her with the world. Nurture her if only through words. And allow her light to be an inspiration to others.”
Mia hopes that this work will not only add to the self-love of (especially but not limited to) Black girls, Black women, and the Black community, but in sharing her story of infertility that it can also offer her an outlet for connecting with others who are navigating infertility and gynecological health disparities. She prays the inspiration for her book also inspires others who are experiencing any type of loss, hurt, or failure to find creative ways to help pain move and give love life, one way or another.
I’m Proud to be Me-e-e-ee! is written to be a picture book intended for ages 4-8. Its primary audience is children of color (or from communities or circumstances considered marginalized) and their parents. Its secondary audiences are families who wish to encourage love of self and others, as well as people experiencing infertility. While the manuscript is complete, there are currently no illustrations bound to this project.