Photo from Aarón Blanco Tejedor via Unsplash.com
I don’t know what to say.
I’m certain that whatever words I come up with won’t be enough and that I’ll probably say something wrong.
However, my discomfort and fear about not getting it right and not wanting to upset anyone or cause further harm have suddenly been outweighed by the discomfort I have found in not saying anything at all.
I don’t know what to do.
My action seems insignificant and I’m not even sure which way to turn or where to begin. I am at the very beginning of this journey as someone who has been ignorant to the culturally ingrained racism within myself, and I know that whatever I choose to do right now, it cannot possibly be enough.
I’m struggling to determine how to use my voice for good when I cannot even begin to understand the experience and trauma of being a person of color. My emotions have gone haywire. I don’t know what to feel or how to process my thoughts and feelings and I feel bad even talking about how I feel right now.
Here’s what I do know. My heart hurts, and this is not a time to be silent. There is work to be done. It's easy to make this about my own fear and discomfort, and I considered deleting all of this once I realized that it was all about me, but I know I'm not the only one feeling this way, so I'm going to share it because these feelings need to be acknowledged in order to be dealt with. I have to move through them to get to the next step.
My silence thus far does not in any way equate to compliance. I didn't want to hastily post a statement that repeats what everyone else around me is saying. It is important to me to send a sincere message, from my heart, and I needed a little time to determine what kind of action I will take to ensure that I'm not just tossing an obligatory post filled with empty words out into the void. I am so sorry that it has taken me this long to speak up, and I do sincerely apologize if that has contributed to your pain.
I won't be silent any longer, and I am ready to take action. I am acknowledging the horrendous treatment of the people of color around me and the systemic behaviors that must be changed to bring about a different future. I am also acknowledging the fact that there is so much that I do not know and cannot understand. Even the term "anti-racist" is completely new to me. I have a lot to learn.
So here is my imperfect action: My family has donated to the Black Lives Matter Seattle organization. I am reading How to Be an Antiracist by Ibram X. Kendi. I have started having conversations with my young children about what is happening and we are using resources from The Conscious Kid to find books to read and get some support as my husband and I continue the conversation and learn how to raise children who are better than we have been. If you need a quick read to get you started in the right direction, I found this article to be very helpful.
This is only the beginning. There is so much to unlearn as we begin to search for a new way of life. I believe in a sustainable future for all, and please know that while we may not always have the right words to say, we will continue to show up imperfectly. We see you, we hear you, we value you. Black Lives Matter at Scoop Marketplace.