In these recent weeks I have had my moments of despair and great grief. At times it just washed over me out of the blue. I feel the anger welling up in me and try to find constructive ways to put it to use. The ongoing killings of black humans at the hands of those sworn to protect us is more than I can digest. I keep thinking this will be the last one but it never is. I hear disparaging words come from places that surprise me. I have had to let those I considered friends go on their way as I have come to a place of a better understanding of what it means to be cared for.
Today is Juneteenth when freedom finally rang for slavery in America. It is a day to celebrate yet there are those that find ill ways to continue to spread division and hate. I try to understand why is it so wrong to want equality. What makes some feel others do not deserve equality. I awake this morning with thoughts of my ancestors as they made their way chained in the hull of a filthy stench filled slave ship. I closed my eyes and said a prayer as I imagined that voyage and the fear that must have been with all of them. I cannot begin to imagine lying for days in your own excrement chained to another human. I cannot imagine the horrors of having your loved one ripped from you and sent to a watery grave. They often call for me in dreams and I spend time wondering what they ask of me. How can I carry on their legacy. It gives me great sadness at times but it also gives me enormous pride to know that blood courses through my veins. I honor them and pay homage not only today but every day of my life.
People often tell us to “get over it” when it comes to slavery. How does one get over something that is a part of your soul and genetic makeup? Once a few years ago I awoke to extreme physical pain. To my shock I was covered with red angry lashes akin to being whipped. Numerous consultations with medical, psychological and spiritual professionals left me confused with very little clarity. After a while I came to understand that this was a message from the ancestors. Once again they were calling out. They were reaching from far away lands to ask me to never forget. So today on Juneteenth I am letting them know I have not forgotten. I am here because they were there and for that I owe them dearly.