I feel like I am firing in seven different directions!
As I face the monumental task of unpacking and dismantling my own white supremacy, I am overwhelmed. The education that I am compelled to move through as a healer — that I must move through — feels urgent.
This re-education process feels pressing but it is anything but quick.
There is no instant fix.
This process involves a deep, vital, earth-shaking journey to unlearn the conditioning in which I have been raised.
A writer, educator, and activist named Layla Saad, wrote a two-part article in 2017 that I did not see until May, 2020. This article called out white healers and spiritual white women demanding that each of us acknowledge the fact that in order for real healing to occur, racism must end for black people. The historic and current oppression of black people who have endured trauma, slavery, abuse, fear, death, false imprisonment — and all these experiences encompass — must be healed collectively in order for true healing to occur on this planet.
I wrote a series on transformation and one of the questions I posed was why now? Why didn’t I see this before?
I don’t know.
I don’t know why I didn’t see it. I feel like there has been a collective awakening like never before. I felt like I was living in a bubble or had blinders on. Can you relate to that experience?
After the uprising following George Floyd’s death, the only way I can describe what happened for me, is that my heart broke wide open. I cried off and on for days, knowing that beneath this emotional outpouring it was imperative that my transforming heart would guide me to action.
However, I had to move through those feelings of shame, regret, anger, shock, grief, sadness, and pain. These feelings were a necessary part of the journey, and certainly not a fraction of what black people have felt over centuries of lives lived.
I want to share how I am moving through this awareness of and awakening to my racism in hopes that you will join me in uncovering your own racism. What I have learned so far is this is an exhausting process. Uncovering where I lack knowledge and understanding of the depth of economic, social, health, political, and educational racism and oppression is substantive. But it is a privilege as I have not and will not experience racism as a white person.
I have also learned that soul-full self-care is critical in this process. And as you care for yourself, think about engaging another to encourage along the way. They too are tending to their own soul-care.
But then taken action! Being anti-racist is lifelong. It takes concentrated, daily effort.
If you are seeking a starting point, start by:
1. Doing the work of self-awareness around your own racism. Find an anti-racism educator you resonate with and can learn from.
2. Reading books by black authors on anti-racism or on their lived experiences of racism.
3. Finding a cause to donate to in your community while you are doing the work that is focused on anti-racism, such as a bail-out fund, and support BIPOC-owned businesses.
4. Tuning into your needs, check in with yourself, and share your journey with others on the same journey. Ask yourself, “what can I do right now, in this moment to tend to my soul, to feel joy?” Give yourself permission, despite the heaviness, to be human and allow yourself to experience joy.
5. Ensuring you build resilience within, allow time to reset and restore.
6. Finding people to share with you and engage with you on your journey while you take action, one step at a time.
I am right here with you.