On December 28th I got to sit and talk with the beautiful Tazha, aka Tazh. I remember meeting this ray of sunshine in my Zumba class. She had moves and was so hype! I loved it and over the years I have gotten to know her, and I wanted to get to know her a little more. You probably recognize her from the Beest Movement photos. I only have strong women in my photos. I wanted to interview Tazha to find out where her determination comes from, and why is she so happy?!
Me: What is your real name?
Taz: Natasha Olbez
Me: How old are you?
Taz: I am 27 years old
Me: Are you really? I thought you were 22!
Taz: Giiiirl it’s the baby! (Giggling)
Me: You got them good genes dang! (We both laugh)
Me: So I want to ask you about your childhood, and how was it growing up? Because you are so happy all the time. Every time I see you it’s all teeth. I’m like damn she got all 32 out.
(She smiles and laughs at my comment)
Taz: My life as a kid I mean I had a blessed childhood. I mean when I came back from the Philippians I saw where my parents were from, like we went through the slums, everything, the city, everything. I mean not the up and coming, we call that the Provinces and then the city is like Bonk! It’s like really crazy so you get to see like extremes! So I got to see where my parents are from. They made the decision to come here to the United States when my dad was 18 and my mom was like 22. My dad joined the navy and my mom was a student nurse. Then they came over to the United States.
Taz: So when I grew up um I think it’s because I’m the baby
Me: how many siblings do you have?
Taz: I have 3 older siblings I have 2 older brothers Eric, Miguel, and my older sister Samantha.
Me: So you’re the 4th?
Taz: Yeah I’m the baby (smiling so big showing all her 32 teeth again).
Taz: So my dad didn’t get to deploy or anything because he retired so I pretty much had my whole family you know. We’re not moving around or anything like that.
Taz: So when I was growing up my mom lived in Maryland she still lives there and my dad stayed down here with me and my sister. He kind of was a single dad but not really they were still together. So my child hood was all about sports. Softball, basketball, swimming, soccer, Thai boxing, like everything like every day I had like 2 practices. And If I wasn’t practicing then I was with my dad practicing outside. He was really on me keeping me busy.
Me: Wow! I sit in amazement.
Taz: It was my brother, my dad, and my sister who was raised by all guys too so of course we were into sports.
Me: that s crazy because I was going to ask you about a picture I saw, it was one of your throwback pictures and saw you balling basketball and you were in you Bball shorts. I was like Yo! You play ball too?
Taz: My dad was committed and when he commits to something he goes above and beyond! He did like a rec league basketball thing and all of a sudden AAU and we would travel all the time and he did that with my sister too. We did like swimming (her face drops with a smug look) Girl I hate swimming.
Me: You hate swimming?
Taz: Well I kind of liked it because I was really good at it but then I got pushed to hard so I was like I hate it! I hate chlorine. I hate it! So yeah it was pretty tough but the only thing that stuck with me was like Thai boxing because it’s fun!
Me: So what age were you when you started doing that?
Taz: 7 and that’s how I know Mr. C, my boss I have known him since I was 7
Me: Wow so that is like family?
Taz: Right, like I grew up with these people. It took precedence. If I could go back I would take school more seriously like my sister because it’s kind of hindering me now. I was like I was good at sports! So now like the schooling like during college Psssh I don’t know how many times I have changed my major. I have settled down on Nursing. I’m going to my NCLEX January 2nd.
She almost drops her phone talking about nursing.
Taz: Oooooh girl I can’t break that (we both laugh) No girl cause I go through phones like it’s nothing.
Me: Girl Sam would kill me if I broke my phone again.
She looks at my phone with amazement with how guarded it is. Then she jokes me about the super guard.
Taz: Girl you can’t ever break this phone (we both laugh).
Me: Man I thought you were 22, you’re 27 what, obstacles have you had growing up?
Taz: My mom because she was away a lot of the time, when I was young I thought it was like normal until I got to high school.
Me: You needed your mom?
Taz: I could verbally say that back then but I needed my mom for real because it’s tough you know.
Me: I know you can’t be like “dad I’m on my period”!
Taz: As she giggles: He would be like “go call your sister” okay so I have to call my sister. My sister is like 5 years older than me and she already went to college and I was in high school and it was my dad and I. He did a good job!
Me: I know he did a great job!
Taz: But after High school I was ridiculous, I was like BADA!!!
Me: so you went crazy?
Taz: No not really because my dad was right there too working security.
Me: Dang so you could do nothing cause he was right there making sure you stayed on track?
Taz: I actually didn’t mind because I loved my dad I mean I really love him but it was just hard not having a mom around. There was a lot of resentment there.
Me: Have you and your mom ever had that conversation about her not being there when you were growing up?
Taz: Oh yeah we talk about it all the time but I think it was just the way she grew up because she had nothing! I can understand now that she worked so hard to provide for us and that is her way of showing us that’s how much she loved us. So I had a blessed child hood. I never struggled, I never struggled I always had warm water, I always had food and it’s because of my mom and my dad! And I respect that.
Taz: Oh my god! I respect her so much and my mom now is still working and she is like almost 70. No! No lie 62 and she still chugging, like she is still going.
Me: She don’t know how to quit.
Taz: No she doesn’t! I RESPECT that about her, god she is amazing! Even though she couldn’t be there I understand why because I know where she came from.
Me: I know a little bit about the Philippines because my husband has told me about things that he has seen over there.
Taz: Oh my god there are like little naked babies running around. Don’t get me wrong they are happy but I’m just like I’m blessed oh my gosh like you can’t take anything for granted so the way my mom worked like I get it, I understand.
Me: Is that were you get your drive from?
Taz: I feel like it. In a lot of ways I am like my mom because she is like work hungry like she wants something done she gets it done, but I don’t want to be like her but.
Me: Yeah I get it you always fight with the one who acts like you the most
Me: I think I butt heads with all of them kids.
Taz: Your kids are so funnyyyyyy!
We sat and talked about my kids for a bit and then we talked about my family’s tradition of getting Chinese’s food for Christmas instead of me cooking a bunch of food and having bad left overs then we got to how she stuck with Thai boxing.
Me: So why did you stick with Thai boxing?
Taz: So you remember when I told you in college I went crazy? So I stayed local because I was with Sterling.
Me: How long have you been dating him?
Taz: 10 years
Me: (my eyes get bug eyed big)
Taz: Yaaaaaasss girl!!! We were together in high school He was a freshmen I was a senior.
Me: You were robbing the cradle girl!
Taz: oh what?
(We both laughed)
Taz: I’m a year and eight months older then him anywhoooo! I was a basketball player and he was a football player and it was meant to be!
(We both laugh)
Me: Like love and basketball
Taz: (laughing) what was the question again?
Me: Why did Jiu jitsu stick?
Taz: I started when I was 7 and then I got my black belt when I was 10 or 11, then I took like a break because I had to travel for sports. When I was 16 I went back and I trained with one of my good friends back then. Her family had their own academy and I trained with them for like 2 years then I stopped when I got out of high school and started college. I went crazy and I was like ( in a baby voice ) I want my mommy I can’t do this with my dad he is too hard on me dadadadadah . I turned aggressive I was really and aggressive person.
Me: You had a lot of anger in you.
Me: And you were like how do I get this shit out?
Taz: Then I was like dad let’s go back to Linxx, then I was like hey and then I started training again and then I asked if I could teach? And they said No! After a while they asked me to teach and I was like YES!! LET’S TEACH THESE KIDS! And that is where I found my passion.
How long have you been teaching?
Taz: I have been teaching for 6 years. I teach 5 year olds and 6 year olds and then 5 to 13 year olds so we have a 5 and 6 your old class and then we have a 7 to 13 year old class. And when you teach the 5 and 6.
Me: Yeah, they have to be like pew pew pew!
Taz: Girlfriend you have to figure out like how to keep them focused so that was a great challenge! But I have figured it out now. (With a smirk on her face)
Me: That’s pretty cool that you have stuck with it for so long. Have you ever competed?
Taz: I have had 2 fights they were exhibitionist matches were there is no winner (she whispers) but I was the winner. (We both laugh)
Taz: No just joking, but no I don’t really like fighting honestly, because getting hit really hurts (smiling with all of her teeth) When you hit somebody that’s fun but you get really tired cause your like AAAAAhhh! (Laughing) but I don’t like getting hit in the face and I’m okay with that.
Me: Have you ever been hit in the face?
Taz: Oh my god plenty of times! Like when we train or have sparing days I would go against grown men because you know I hang with them. They like to go hard on me and I’m like it’s cool, I can take it. I mean you can’t feel nothing because your adrenalin is going but when you go home you’re like “why does this hurt”? But it’s cool. I just teach and work at the desk now.
Me: Do you ever want to go back?
Taz: Probably not the hard core training I mean I would for like the hard core workouts but as far as getting hit in the face all the time no I’m good. It’s not for everybody but it’s great to work on the pads now that’s fun.
Me: I have seen a couple of your videos and there was this one chick you were sparing with and you flew in the air and punched, I was like whoa!!!
Taz: Yeah that is the super man punch!
Me: That’s like something you see on the damn movies!
Taz: One of the guys that I grew up, and trained with, He is a stunt double. He was a stunt double for one of the foot soldiers for the turtle’s movie and he has been in a lot of like NetFlix series and TV shows. Him and my teacher, he also does that too. I’m pretty good at pretending to get hit but I can’t flip. If you hit me I can do a cartwheel.
Me: I know you work with kids at Linxx and you are a nurse. Do you ever think of working with kids in the hospitals?
Taz: No I can’t. I would be very sad and I would get attached. I don’t think I would be able to handle it.
Me: But you would bring those smiles with your personality.
Taz: Now that I think about it I would I’m scared that it would take away my personality that I have now, happy. I know that that is something that I can’t…I can’t I mean I would love too but I just know. That is why I have decided on being a school nurse or nurse estheticians. They help with microdermabrasion and Botox I can see myself doing that. I don’t want to complain about my work I want to love what I do.
I want to go back to your high school days you are in the era that teen moms really started to become really popular. What kept you from joining that statistic?
Taz: MY FATHER! He was really strict and he put that fear in me you know and I am grateful. All my friends except 2 were pregnant. I know that would have broken his heart and I didn’t want to do that to him. I broke his heart plenty of times by worrying him to death. But yes my father was strict like my curfew was 11 at the age of 18.
Me: (In shock) 18!
Taz: Yes girl! and that was only on the weekends. I would stay out past my curfew and I would sneak out to go to my friend’s house which gave my father grey hairs. That was my way of rebelling.
Me: It sounds like your father loves you and cares very much for you guys and he did a great job raising you. I think that he’s putting his life on hold to raise his kids say a lot about him. It’s nice to have your father in your life. Granted you needed your mom but I believe that everything happens for a reason. I think your dad had to stay and steer you in the right direction.
Taz: Amen sister! Sports was a life saver I would say with the school I went to Lands Town so my dad was like nope you’re going into sports.
Taz: But like you said I think everything came full circle so now I can build a relationship with my mom and now my dad and mom are now working on their relationship.
I was great sitting, talking to Taz. I learn a great deal about her. She is now on a new journey. Planning her wedding!