It may feel as though the world has gone crazy right now.
But I think that these are our country’s birthing pains: hopefully all of the pain we’re enduring and have endured will birth a brighter tomorrow for our children, and our children’s children.
But we all have to do our part to make that better, brighter future a reality.
What can you do?
What can you do to help?
The most important thing you can do right now is to take care of yourself so you will have the strength and clarity to do what is good and right.
1) Get a water bottle
Fill it with water and drink water every half hour. Do this for 3 days and you’ll be hydrated and therefore clearheaded, alert, and refreshed.
2) Dress for who you are, not who the media says you are.
You are a pure soul with its own destiny.
Black men and women are some of the most beautiful people in the history of the world, act like it. YOU are elegant and beautiful. If you look up “beautiful white woman” in google, loads of pictures of nicely dressed, pretty, white women pop up. If you type “beautiful black woman” in google, there are loads of pictures of black women…but we’re NAKED, in BIKINIS, and just in skanky, skimpy clothes. Why is our PR so bad? Let’s change that, let’s not let the media take advantage of us. Let’s control our images and control what we allow people to see.
3) Turn the news off.
Black people have the worst PR in history. Turn off the TV and live your life as you.
We can’t scream and cry the world into understanding our struggles and pain. We need to focus on us right now: focus on ourselves as individuals and focus on community building.
Turn on some nice jazz, take a hot bath, open the windows and clean your whole house from top to bottom, you’ll feel clean, tired, and accomplished after doing that. As you all know, mindless cleaning is a good way to de-stress.
5) Get a therapist.
Don’t act like you don’t need one; not with the issues rampant in our community compounded by (or because of) all the hurts we endure in America. Just think of it as: I deserve therapy. I deserve to be healthy. I deserve to be happy. Click HERE to find a therapist. It’s totally private and confidential.
If you can’t afford a $25 co-pay for each session, then click HERE to find a community mental health clinic or call 1-800-662-HELP (4357). Listen, you know our history, you know the government inflicted pain we’ve been through, they should help us deal with it and there are resources available to us, we just need to grasp them.
6) Stop trying to convince people who don’t care.
^_^ I’m smiling at you with love right now;
It’s a knowing smile that shows you *I* understand you.
I understand your pain, your fear for your loved ones, your incredulity.
I understand your outrage and the hollowing sadness eating an acid hole through your heart.
I understand your pain.
We, your community, understand your pain because we share that same hurt.
Yelling your pain to strangers; wanting them to hear you and understand you…
Raging into blankness…
You will wear yourself thin, and wear yourself out.
Don’t torture yourself.
I did that when Trayvon Martin was killed and I almost died from the hurt that seemed to sear through my veins…9 months pregnant and too frightened to birth a child into such a callous world. Holding my child in as if I could somehow find a safe place to birth and raise her.
We understand our pain, and that’s enough.
We understand the injustices, and that’s enough.
Some people just don’t care.
And that’s ok.
It’s not their history. It’s not their hurt. It’s ours.
The secret is that pain can be turned inwards and transformed into an ignited passion and dedication to help our communities.
We can heal ourselves.
We can heal our communities.
We have the power to stop the violence in our communities and the violence done to us.
Well I’ll tell you one part of the nonprofit I’m creating: Have the majority of the officers who serve in the inner city, be the men and women who grew up there. That’s a great way to build community, for cops to know the people they serve, and be respected as people, as parents, as neighbors, and as authority figures. That’s the way it used to be right?
If you want to know more and you want to be a part of this nonprofit, that addresses police violence, racism, and inner city issues, I will soon have a facebook page you can join. Working hand in hand with the police…becoming the police, is just one part of this venture.
And YOU are definitely a part of the solution.
7) Start getting massages
They’re not that expensive and you’re worth it. Think of how much stress you’re under. You deserve it. Treat yourself. Instead of McDonalds, use that money to get a massage. Use Groupon and they start at $20 for a 60 minute massage.
8) Plan who you want to be
Great people don’t just happen. Everyday they do something small that helps them become who they want to be. And most importantly, how do you want to help? Do you want to mentor kids? Help the elderly? Help the homeless? The drug addicted? Single mothers? Who in our community do you have a heart for? Decide what you want to do with your life, and do it. Surround yourself with positive, like-minded people.
9) Take a break from divisive social media and TV
Don’t watch tv programs that show Black people as rowdy thugs/drug dealers/mistresses/perpetual inmates and cops as mindless killers (My mom and aunt are officers).
Do NOT support television shows that portray us as losers. BE CAUTIOUS of what you watch and listen to, don’t fill your mind with junk that tells you you’re a loser or a thug…these are lies.
Instead, find websites, books, and magazines that show you AS YOU ARE, not as the media portrays us to be.
10) Love yourself:
Your skin color is BEAUTIFUL,
Your hair is BEAUTIFUL,
Your heart is BEAUTIFUL,
your mind is BEAUTIFUL,
your soul is BEAUTIFUL.
For centuries we were told that this is not true, that there’s something wrong with us. Try everyday to love and care and treasure you, your family, your community, and the world at large.
That’s the transition. Our whole community is transitioning; not from relaxed to natural; we’re transitioning our MINDS from complacent to determinedly happy, successful, and loving.
11) Find hobbies you love that remind you that we’re all the same on the inside.
What are you into? Do you even have a hobby? Life’s not just about getting by.
Have you heard of cosplay?
Do you like Fashion design?
What about Historical Weaponry?
What about Presidential biographies?
Find an activity that’s fulfilling to you and create a community of like-minded people
Even if you’re not religious. Send up a prayer to God, or if you call him “the universe” that’s fine too. Pray for us. All of us humans. That we can all stop pointing fingers and be self-reflective and see what we can each do to be a part of the solution, instead of someone just screaming that there are problems.
We humans are immature. We only seem to change and grow in times of turmoil.
I’m guilty…it’s only now that I’ve become dedicated to helping our community, focusing on our community. I never even thought about doing anything about the racism and brutality facing our communities, and these issues have existed in the US for as long as the US has been around. Racism is at the very core of the US…
And if you don’t already know this, then you are probably an immigrant or someone who is not a very good student of American history.
If you don’t know about the racism that pervaded the founding of America, then you’ve never actually read the different versions of the Declaration of Independence, nor have you read Jefferson’s notes, nor do you know of the dispute between the northern and southern colonies before the US actually became a nation.
If you want to vehemently argue that this is the land of opportunity for everyone, then you have no idea of US governmental history, the how Black people were killed for learning to read, killed for marrying, killed for just existing and how this trickles down to present times. If you are this person who shouts without knowledge, then please quiet yourself.
I am beyond angered by people who have no knowledge of history and yet declare “all lives matter,” not knowing that for the majority of this nation’s history; Black lives have NOT mattered since we were considered property and our “masters” made themselves feel better about torturing and killing us, and by saying this was fine since we were no better than animals, because we didn’t have souls.
For centuries we were told that we didn’t have souls.
Just take that in. Yes, our community has issues and we’re working on them. It’s difficult. It’s complicated. But we will succeed.
Finally my friends, ….BREATHE.
That’s what I just did, just now. And I will be spending the day, going down this list to ensure that I’m healthy enough to care for myself, my family, my community and the world.
It starts with you.
Care for yourself.
Help heal our communities.
Then racism will eventually dissipate.
And when it does, we’ll dance. All of us will dance and love each other and dance some more.
I’m praying for us.
*Disclaimer: I don’t hate White people. Even before I married my Italian husband, my family had white relatives. Several of my great great grandparents are white. I do not hate the police, as I stated I have family members who are officers. And if you even have to wonder these things after reading this…then we need to talk. Criticism does not equal hate. If your husband smacks your child, you will criticize him, you may even yell at him, you will protest. You will say how it’s unfair of him to use his power against a child. That does not mean you hate your husband, that you want to kill your husband; it means that you want him to use his authority fairly. Do you understand the comparison? If you have any questions or just want to talk, email me: email@example.com.