Kimberly-Elise-Daughter
Behind The Scenes

5 Lessons My Mother Taught Me by: Ajableu

by: Ajableu

I wanted to take my mother’s birthday as an opportunity to step out of the woodwork and write a post about my mother Kimberly, my closest friend, and most profound role model.

My mother was a very young woman when I was born (younger than me!!! And I’m really young!!!)

I wanted to share a few life lessons I learned from my mother, Kimberly Elise:

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 1. Hold on to your dreams

I remember when my dad, my mother, and I moved to Los Angeles back in 1994. As a 4-year-old, I only had the vague understanding that we were moving to a place called California, because Mom was going to be an actress. My grandmother told me that in California, there was never any rain. I was excited!

I had no idea how crazy it was for our family to pack up our stable life in Minnesota and head west.

The lesson? Hold on to your dreams. Move like your dream is a reality. The universe will honor it, if it’s a part of your plan.

Check out Kimberly’s 6 tips to get started on becoming an actor.

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2. Embrace every part of your being

My mother’s commitment to loving her body, heart, and mind blows my mind, especially as I enter adulthood and become more conscious of my own womanhood.

She has an incredible ability to not let other people’s opinions permeate her sense of self, and I believe this is an essential aspect of her success.

My mother lives in a negative-free zone, and I urge you to do so as well. Do not gossip; do not think negatively of yourself.



Learn to care for your natural hair – begin your natural hair journey with Curly Halo, Kimberly’s very own hair care reference guide and workbook.

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3. Be patient

When I was ten years old, my mother gave me a jade rock for Christmas. The word “patience” was written across the top. She told me to keep the rock in my pocket, and whenever I felt frustrated or restless, to breathe, hold onto the rock, and rehearse patience.

Fourteen years later, I still hold onto an “inner rock.”  When I’m feeling frustrated, I stop and I breathe deeply in order to put things into perspective. Moreover, through patience, I embrace every moment life has to offer. Every moment is important: the smooth and the rough.

Looking for inner calm and inner harmony? Hear what Kimberly has to say about finding balance and inner peace in a topsy-turvy world.

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4. Get a little goofy

Can I tell you a secret? I am tickled by my mother’s characters. Unlike Helen from Diary of a Mad Black Woman, who journeyed to overcome acrimony against her husband, or the stoic Denver from Beloved, Mom is super goofy. Not much gets to her, she rarely raises her voice, and she’s silly with everyone in public and in private.

I suggest that we all take a note from her, and be silly and fun with the people in your life.

What was it like to work with Denzel? Kimberly knows y’all wanted to ask!




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5. Own up to your responsibilities

I am only beginning to understand this one, as I’ve become an adult, but it seems to be becoming more and more relevant, as I gain more life experiences. From my mother, I have learned the importance of owning up to my responsibilities – and not just the ones related to family. This one extends to my friends, my community, the planet, and myself.

Being aware of your blessings is key to positive thinking. Click here for 8 ways to show more gratitude in your relationships.

Thank you for reading! And please let us know what you have learned from your mother, or from watching Kimberly’s movies over the years. Leave a comment below or send us a note.

-Ajableu

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48 Comments

  • Reply
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  • Reply
    Sonette Alexis
    April 20, 2014 at 7:13 am

    Growing up as a child I didn’t get to spend much time with my mom. She lived overseas from the time I was about 8, and so I grew up with my grandma. My grandmother was very serene and nothing much got to her. In moments when she was bothered by something she talked less but hum songs. Through observation of my grandmother I have learned to be still, sing and pray, especially when everything around me seem to be out of control, because I am the one responsible for my actions. An important lesson I also learned from my grandmother; is to pray for my children and let them hear me calling their names as I pray, and speak out what I am praying about them.
    Although my mother wasn’t around for the embedding of a lot of life’s important lessons she was very committed in making sure that my other two siblings and I never had to worry about food, clothes and shelter. Now I am a mother of three, I am passing on these valuable lessons to my children. There are days when things aren’t going the way I would have liked but I exercise whatever good I know, I put my effort in the good things, and the outcome is always good. You see, after too many years of “knocking my head against a tree and getting the same outcome,” I have learned that it is a worthless to put any effort at all in negative thoughts, because what is inside of a man is who he/she is and that’s what comes out of him/her. I also learn from my grandmother to surround myself with people who aim high and who wants good for others,(it took me a long time to put this lesson in practice).
    I love your mom, because I see her as a down to earth woman. Someone of strength and very optimistic. I have never seen her in person but when I am watching movies I always try to discern the actors/actresses true spirit. Your mom has the spirit of serenity, and she is positive and that’s what make it enjoyable watching the movies she is in. I want to thank you for sharing with others the things you hold dearly about your mom, because this got me to remember the good things that help make me who I am. God bless!!!

  • Reply
    Erica
    April 18, 2014 at 2:25 pm

    Thanks for sharing Kimberly.
    I truly appreciate daughters celebrating positive influences.
    My mother is so goofy at times its hard not to laugh. She’ll pull an embarrassing moment into a joke. I love her innocence in laughter because its a domino effect. Whoever is in the room laughs along with us not knowing the reason we’re laughing.

  • Reply
    Michelle
    April 18, 2014 at 9:24 am

    I have learned to Love God, self and others.
    Pray about everything
    An attitude of gratitude
    Never give up
    Forgive quickly
    Work smart and heard
    Be teachable
    Talk to God about people and talk to people about God. Then you won’t have to apologize as much for causing offense
    Be kind to all. Person’s
    Be a voice for the voiceless
    Always be helpful
    Service to others with love and respect is the most noble of duties
    Apathy
    Be dignified at work, school or play
    Laugh often and hard.
    Share of whatever I have
    Hold loosely to things and people but hold my faith tightly.
    Love and fight for your family especially my children.
    Whoppings hurts but it won’t kill me.
    Never surrender my principles for temporary pleasures. Just to mention a few…lol grace and peace♡♡♡

  • Reply
    Kimberly Elise
    April 18, 2014 at 9:23 am

    Thank you very much everyone for sharing your comments! I’ve read them all and am quite touched. So happy that my mother Kimberly continues to inspire so many mothers & daughters.

    -ajableu.

  • Reply
    LaKishia Mabry
    April 18, 2014 at 6:38 am

    Thank you for writing this. This article was an awesome read for me. This now has me really thinking and trying to put some things into perspective.
    Thank you

  • Reply
    Alexis
    April 18, 2014 at 5:59 am

    This was all very good advice. I found it heart warming that your mother has taught you lessons that you actually learned and whole close to your heart, because it is something I pray my very on daughter is going to do. The rock with the word patiences on it is something I plan on borrowing. Thank you for sharing and God bless you both.

  • Reply
    Sharree Monae
    April 18, 2014 at 4:57 am

    These Are Beautiful Lessons That Life With Beautiful People Afford You! I Am So Happy To See That As A Young Woman In This Day In Age You Are Able To Appreciab And Grasp What’s Truly Important In The Relationship You Have In Your Mother. There Is Nothing More Beautiful Than A Relationship Between Two Women Who Can Still Maintain A True Relationship As You Move From A Girl Into A Women, It’s So Hard For Mothers And Daughters Today! There Is Sadness In How Mothers Are Teaching Their Daughters To Be Women! I Have A Beautiful Daughter Stepping Into Adulthood And Our Bond Is Amazing, She Is My Shero As I Am Sure You Are To Your Mother! Learn And Love Each Day! Continue To Grow In Patience! Keep God First Because There Is Truth In Dreams, And Miracles That Are Right Before You, Sometimes They Are Hard To See If Our Focus Is Offset By Fear! My Daughter Is My Miracle I Was Told She would Never Be In Existance, But She Lives, Since The Age Of Ten She Has Battled Cancer (Brain Tumor) They Said 5to6 Years It’s Been Ten! The Most Beautiful Thing Is Her Strentgh As A Young Women That Was Forced To Learn Life Lessons That I Have a Tried To Instill Without The Worlds Influence Has Been Amazing Truly Miraculous! She Doesn’t Live With In Fear Of Her Disease, Her Disease Lives With Her! Continue That Bond Just As Beautiful As It Is Now, Nothing Will Be More Rewarding In Life Until You Are A Mother Yourself Teaching The Same Life Lessons!❤️

    • Reply
      Kimberly Elise
      April 18, 2014 at 6:52 am

      Wow! Thank you for sharing your experience, your positivity and your words of wisdom. Truly inspiring.

      -Team Kimberly

  • Reply
    U-Landa Tudor
    April 18, 2014 at 4:44 am

    My mom taught me to make myself happy no matter what…. Do not hold back and to always go after everything that I desire. I’ve seen her model this each day and I know that when she passed on… She was happy with all she accomplished in life!

  • Reply
    Terion Reynolds
    April 18, 2014 at 4:12 am

    Hello all hope and pray that this message find you doing well and in remarkable spirit as a man there is a lot you can learn from your mother so what I’ve learned from my mother is to care for people be respectful and always always no matter what put God in the forefront of every decision you make cause alone nothings possible but with him all things are possible and worth the time and Kimberly you are an amazing actress I am a big fan all the way back to set it off and bait women thou art lose keep up the great work and I hope that my girls be as wonderful of a role model as you are thanks for all that you do

  • Reply
    Marcella Forest
    April 18, 2014 at 12:38 am

    Ajableu, those are great key points to success in this life. I really needed to hear those. … The one that stood out the most was to hold on to your dreams. I will keep dreaming and “press towards the mark of the high calling…”

    On another note; I really enjoy the characters played by you Kimberly. You are a great actress and you always deliver your roles with a passionate portrayal. God has truly given you a gift.

    Take care,

    Ms. Forest

  • Reply
    Kerry-Ann Ellington
    April 17, 2014 at 11:45 pm

    Happy Birthday to one of my favorite actresses. Be blessed.

    Love and light!! 🙂

  • Reply
    Angel Z. Jones
    April 17, 2014 at 10:26 pm

    Lol the amount of spelling errors is crazy…lol I promise I type better than this !

  • Reply
    Angel Z. Jones
    April 17, 2014 at 10:23 pm

    Hello my name is Angel and I first want to say that is has been a joy reading about the lessons you’ve learned from your mother. I am only 19 and going on to my junior year of college. So I have only begun to realize the true things my mother has taught me. But here are three that stand out to me.

    1) Sacrifice.
    Being a first generation Carrbian-American. I learned about my mothers hardships coming to the
    U.S and trying to make a living for her three children. Working full-time, over-time, days off, and at times vacations just to afford the roof over our heads. Yet she never complained to us and always wanted us to have the best. However being cut from a cloth like that caused my siblings and I to old ask for what we needed. For in the end we didn’t expect anything more than the neccessities.

    2)Independence/Freedom

    Watching my mother be the bread winner, dinner maker, and bedtime story teller made me realize the strength in independence. Although it was hard growing up with a father, my mother never made me miss a beat. Yet my other was a very busy woman so I quick learned how to be independent. Started working as soon as possible. Making
    my own money, working on my own programs and formulating my own opinions. I began to chart my own path in education and the arts and my mother supported me through it. She was my cheerleader and never forced me to do anything.

    3)The Power in Passion

    Remember when I said my mom let my chart my own course? Well she specifically let me follow my dream of performing. My Jamaican immigrant mother let my go to college for Acting. Yes Acting! (Which is rather odd because immigrant parents often force their kids to be doctors or nurses or something concrete.) My mother saw my drive for the stage, presence, and talent, and I ran before she could tell me not to go. Currently studying Theatre Arts at Howard University (HU You Know!) with hopes of making her proud with my achievements.

    Thanks so much for reading!

  • Reply
    Kathleen Francis
    April 17, 2014 at 10:07 pm

    I’ve didn’t have the same experience from my mum.. But one thing she did say never let your partner raise his hand to you …

    I absolutely love all your mums films she is a truly wonderful and blessed actress … I first saw her in set it off to and it’s be a roller coaster ride from then… God bless you both .. Keep spreading the love …

    • Reply
      Kimberly Elise
      April 18, 2014 at 6:58 am

      Thank you very much. The lessons that come in bite-sized segments can be some of the most powerful.

      -Team Kimberly

  • Reply
    Honey Tan
    April 17, 2014 at 9:45 pm

    What I have learned from my mother is to enjoy my youth. She always told me that and I’m still following her advice. Be honest with yourself so you can learn from your mistakes as well as others mistakes. You don’t have to rush love that it’s more than okay to get to know yourself first, cherish yourself and then be open to love from someone else later. Those are just a few gems she has taught me either through her words or just learning from her life.

  • Reply
    Henrietta Hill
    April 17, 2014 at 8:55 pm

    I really enjoy watching your mother, she is an inspitation and a great actress. I love that shes always happy and smiling. On another note my mother was love and taught me how to love and pray. If nothing else she taught me that you must work hard for what you want in life.

  • Reply
    Henrietta Hill
    April 17, 2014 at 8:53 pm

    I really enjoy watching your mother, she is an inspitation and a great actress. I love that shes always happy and smiling. On another note my mother was love and taught me how to love and pray. If nothing else she taught me that you must work hard for what.

  • Reply
    Cassandra Winzer
    April 17, 2014 at 6:49 pm

    Thank God for women like Kimberly, full of wisdom and willing to share it with others.

  • Reply
    Shirlene D
    April 17, 2014 at 6:26 pm

    This was an awesome read. I’m glad to have read that Ms Eluse is as remarkable as I imagined her to be. Raising a young woman with the ability to remain in tune with herself and her values is beyond commendable. ❤️

  • Reply
    Tina
    April 17, 2014 at 6:09 pm

    I can tell you one thing I’ve learned from this article, I was right. I have admired Ms Elise’s work for many years. I’ve always felt that she was very genuine & introspective regarding her work. She has always brought the characters to life. Made you believe in them & truly feel what they seemed to be feeling. You never saw her face associated with tabloid drama & gossip. Every interview was always done with such grace & humility. While I came to the conclusion that she was special, not knowing her personally, it really was only supposition on my part. Over the last few months, via FB & Twitter, I do feel that I’ve learned a little more about Ms Elise, the person behind the characters. This letter from her daughter just confirmed what I’d already concluded.

    Many of these things are familiar because they are things that I’ve learned from my mother. She is a woman of God who has never met a stranger. She has helped lift me when I was going through some incredibly rough patches in life. My sister & I tease that she needs to stop “eating the burnt toast”, as she puts everyone before herself. That’s just who she is though. Always there when you need her, even when she herself needs a break. I am blessed to have had she & my dad in my life. He has gone to be with the Lord, but my mother continues to be a blessing in our lives. As mothers, you are cherished. 🙂

  • Reply
    Linda
    April 17, 2014 at 6:07 pm

    Enjoyed every movie that Kimberly has act n was featured in. ..

  • Reply
    Linda
    April 17, 2014 at 6:00 pm

    The strength and integrity to be who I m, n the power to just stand still, n embrace the comfort of knowing that the divine power is always there…my mother was and is a beautiful woman, n throughout her trials n tribulations of massive stroke n being paralyzed, she still smile, n always says Thank You..She always said, no matter what always show kindness n say Thank you…she is one of the most strongest individual with all her obstacles, being bedridden for 10 plus years, she still smiles..The woman who will forever shine in my life…. aka Linda Cannon Jamison. …Most of Louise Cannon…

  • Reply
    Christella (but my nickname is Kwizi)
    April 17, 2014 at 4:55 pm

    Dear Ajableu and Kimberly,
    Thank you so much for the inspirationnal words. Kimberly, I love all your movies i’ve seen until now. For me, you’re not only an actress, i found you so deep with all your roles, to name few;”a diary of a black woman” or “les couleurs du destin”, “great debators” (i use to write my joys and pains too because sometimes you can’t share it easily and it allows to see where i was and where i’m now).
    Ajableu, that’s what i learnt from your dear mum.
    From my mom, i always remember her commitment to our family, her courage, big sense of justice and her kindness. Trough these 30 years, she got often ill, but she amazed how she never gave up…
    Happy Birthday Kimberly,
    Love from an african fan….

  • Reply
    Christella (but my nickname is Kwizi)
    April 17, 2014 at 4:52 pm

    Dear Ajableu and Kimberly,
    Thank you so much for the inspirationnal words. Kimberly, I love allyour movies i’ve seen. For me, you’renot an actress, i foound you so deep with all the roles,and especially in”a diary of a black woman” ) or “les couleurs du destin”, “great debators” (i use to write my joys and pains too because sometimes you can’t share it easily and it allows to see where i was and where i’mnow. Ajableu,that’s what i learnt from your dear mum.
    From my mom, i always remember her commitment to our family, her courage, big sense of justice and her kindness. Trough these 30years,she got often ill, but she amazed how she never gave up…
    Happy Birthday Kimberly,
    Love from an african fan….

  • Reply
    Andrea Harbin
    April 17, 2014 at 4:39 pm

    I loved what you have written about your mother. She a great actress and it seems she does not take being in the spotlight too serious to remember who she is as a person. I always look forward to watching anything she is starring in. Keep up the wonderful work of being you!!

  • Reply
    Lisa
    April 17, 2014 at 3:54 pm

    What a wonderful tribute to your Mother. Thanks so much for honoring her so publicly. How sweet!
    My own Mother taught me that I can do ANYTHIN G I put my mind to. I stand by this even more as I move into later years.
    Again, this post is so very special.

    All the best!

  • Reply
    Pam
    April 17, 2014 at 3:11 pm

    I so agree. At 45 I know they make a happier and more peaceful life. Have a great day.

  • Reply
    Paris
    April 17, 2014 at 2:56 pm

    That was very beautiful♡ Thank you for sharing your mom with us. I sense her calm kind loving spirt from her post, that’s what attracted me to her Facebook page, in addition to being a dynamic actor. .

  • Reply
    Nadege
    April 17, 2014 at 2:40 pm

    Very touching, I was not raised by my mother, I’m 45 niw and I still miss knowing what it feels like to have a mother. Thank you for sharing this. It gives me a little idea on what to share with my daughter.

  • Reply
    Siobhan
    April 17, 2014 at 2:34 pm

    From watching my mom’s journey with cancer….never give up.

  • Reply
    Katherine Jordan-Tate
    April 17, 2014 at 1:58 pm

    Wow! That was the most beautiful thing i’ve read in a long time. I never knew you were a mom. I never knew that you weren’t as quiet & serious as your characters. But, thanks to those characters i’ve learned not just how to be strong or where my strength comes from, but also how strong I really was to begin with! Thank you for following your dream & being the most inspirational actress i’ve ever seen who has taught me so much!

    • Reply
      Kimberly Elise
      April 18, 2014 at 7:55 am

      Katherine,

      One of the biggest reasons I created this website is because I wanted to share more of myself with everyone who’s been supporting me for so long. I’m so happy that you’re getting to know me 🙂

      Love, Kimberly

  • Reply
    Nadine Johnson
    April 17, 2014 at 1:37 pm

    What a beautiful post! Thank you for sharing! You’re mom is awesome & a great role model! Your words prove that she has done well because she raised you!

  • Reply
    Coretta Fitzhugh
    April 17, 2014 at 1:15 pm

    This brought me to tears, I was fourteen when I had my daughter. She is 17 now, & doing so well. I don’t know how proud I am of myself but I am very proud of her & I hope to be an inspiration as she grows. Learning as life takes me by the throat (literally) I’m just doing all I can to see her shine. I want to also follow my dreams but I don’t know where to start. Thanks for sharing a small piece of your story with us. The simplest advice from someone like you to someone like me is soooo inspirational. Thank You. Remember my Name, Coretta Scott Fitzhugh because one day you will hear me speak & ill definitely bring up this post I read on Kimberly’s page & maybe even shake your hand. Congratulations on your wonderful job as a mother a woman & a spectacular actress. Thank you again 🙂

  • Reply
    Stella
    April 17, 2014 at 1:10 pm

    I learn a lot watching Kimberly in a diary of a mad black woman – her 360 turn around to help her husband when he was at his worst . Showed me how to be a better person, selfless, kind hearted and loving . God bless – happy birthday too – you are an awesome human being

  • Reply
    Terri Johnson
    April 17, 2014 at 1:01 pm

    Thank you so much for sharing… My mother has taught me that starting over is sometimes necessary and losing is a part of winning. I’ve witnessed my mother start and work hard for a company that she dedicated her life to for twenty-two years…. only to have nothing to “show for it.” Despite her hard-work she never received any recognition for her efforts. Eventually she left the company her mother (my grandmother) and her started… At 49, 50 years old I saw my mother struggle in more ways than one. One day she came to me and said she still dreams of owning her own company… and I told her to do it;She did it once and she can do it again. My mother did just that, and just two years later (2012) she opened the doors to her very own company that has been booming every since. Although I aspire to be an actress and move to LA ;), I work as finance coordinator for my mother’s company and my brother works as the human resource manager. Working for my mom allows me to take off when needed so I, too, can go after my dreams! I’m super grateful for that. She started her own family business (fulfilling her dream). My mother taught me to be strong and fearless. She never gave up and she always kept it real. SN: She’s the family comedian too. *Here’s to awesome mom’s.

  • Reply
    ebony clark
    April 17, 2014 at 12:58 pm

    Aww that was very special and so sweet, my mom always taught me never to give a man a key to my apt ,and always have my own place even if its a shoe box at least I can’t be thrown into the streets.

  • Reply
    Carissa
    April 17, 2014 at 12:46 pm

    My mother also taught me to embrace who I am! And if I ever have a chance to have fun, take it.

  • Reply
    Latoya Miley
    April 17, 2014 at 12:43 pm

    Thank you

  • Reply
    Terri Johnson
    April 17, 2014 at 12:42 pm

    Thank you so much for sharing… My mother has taught me that starting over is sometimes necessary and losing is a part of winning. I’ve witnessed my mother start and work hard for a company that she dedicated her life to for twenty-two years…. only to have nothing to “show for it.” Despite her hard-work she never received any recognition for her efforts, Eventually she left the company her mother (my grandmother) and her started… At 49, 50 years old I saw my mother struggle in more ways than one. One day she came to me and said she still dreams of owning her own company… and I told her to do it;She did it once and she can do it again. My mother did just that, and just two years later (2012) she opened the doors to her very own company that has been booming every since. Although I aspire to be an actress and move to LA ;), I work as finance coordinator for my mother’s company and my brother works as the human resource manager. Working for my mom allows me to take off when needed so I, too, can go after my dreams! I’m super grateful for that. She started her own family business (fulfilling her dream). My mother taught me to be strong and fearless. She never gave up and she always kept it real. SN: She’s the family comedian too. *Here’s to awesome mom’s.

  • Reply
    Latoya Miley
    April 17, 2014 at 12:40 pm

    That was a wonderful tribute to your mother. I’ve definitely have learned alot for your moms movies especially strength & being true to myself & not letting negativity enter in my life or even forgetting my worth. I respect and admire my mothers strength being a mother at fifteen and being abused by her ex-husband for twelve years and left to raise seven kids on her on before she met my dad & he admired her for being a strong independent woman taking care of her kids She put her kids first by teaching us to respect ourselves & not to forget our worth. She’s the best mom ever.

  • Reply
    NaeTrue
    April 17, 2014 at 12:36 pm

    Love Your Lessons from Mom! I’ve learned more than I can count from my own Mom..Rose! I Love her, but Especially Love learning to Love God & to stay in Prayer to Him! My mother is Servant to Jehovah & she shows in her kindness to others, her sharing ways, and her determination to Preach, Teach & remain Faithful & Humble.. i use her Example & teaching in my Everyday life, just to get through at times…it has been a support system(her strength & teaching) and I am Greatful!! Also Kimberly has had A Fan in Me since Set It Off, and Beloved to Now!! I Think she is a Awesome Actress and An Inspiration to Me to follow my Dreams as a Writer, Musician, and Actress!! Happy Birthday, wish You Many Many more!

  • Reply
    Marcia E. Brown
    April 17, 2014 at 12:36 pm

    This is absolutely beautiful!

  • Reply
    thandeka
    April 17, 2014 at 12:31 pm

    my mom told me to become a woman of strength and to never look upon myself and to always keep my head held up high n most of all to be a lady n love myself

  • Reply
    Su Clay
    April 17, 2014 at 12:24 pm

    Such a sweet testimony of your love and precious relationship with your mother. You have blessed her, I’m sure.

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