Under Construction

It’s been a little over a year since I started this little blog project of mine, and about 9 months since I submitted my resignation to the school district I taught in, with the intention of discovering more about myself, whom I feel called to serve, and in what capacity. Over the course of that time, I have found myself in a cycle of reading, reflecting, writing, and deleting. I have plugged myself into groups where I have found great community, and groups that have not been for me. I have made plans, scrapped plans, pivoted plans, and rethought plans, and while I would love to say nearly a year in to this journey I feel closer to knowing what my true calling is, that would be a lie. Some days I feel no closer to clarity than I did when I made the seemingly impulsive decision to leave the comfort of concrete expectations and a regular paycheck. If I really stop to think though, while I haven’t quite found my specific calling, I have gained a little bit of clarity on some of the steps I need to take to get there. The first of which is that while I am in the process of figuring out what my path is, I need to be intentional and consistent in my writing and posting. Since I am only one person, and an unemployed one at that, I am the web designer, editor, content creator, and whatever else comes with the territory; and not by trade or education. The bottom line is that I’m taking some time to learn to make this site more attractive and more useable for the reader while providing consistent, authentic content. Basically, this site is getting a facelift. I won’t be taking any of my past content down, because as I undoubtedly grow as a writer, I want to be able to look back and remind myself of the journey; but I don’t plan to post any new content here until the bandages come off and the site is ready.

My goal date for reveal is April 1, 2021.

Wrapping up February and an apology

I’ll start with the apology. One month ago, I made a commitment to share information on my Facebook page about a Black change maker each day in February in honor of Black History month. Like so many other things in my life, I started strong and made sure to highlight a new person or resource every day. As February went on, life started happening as it often tends to do, and I started making allowances while still fulfilling my commitment. An example of this was the few days following receiving the COVID vaccine, I felt weak, achy, and tired; so instead of posting something original, I shared posts from other accounts. I’m not apologizing for that – the information was still valuable. Then Texas was hit with a monumental snowstorm (relatively speaking for Texas), and our power grid was exposed as garbage. While I was fortunate enough to not lost power, thereby making keeping up with my commitment possible; I suffered mentally and emotionally (and I really can’t even explain why) and withdrew from any and all social interactions: especially online. When we got past what could have been a much larger catastrophe, but shouldn’t have been a catastrophe in the first place, I tried to get back on track; telling myself that I would feature as many people as days I had missed and go forward from there, only I didn’t. I did pick back up with sharing about historic and current Black change makers daily for a few more days, and was hopeful that I would honor my commitment, and have a total of 28 people honored by the end of the month. Only I didn’t. My last post was on February 23 when I reflected on the murder of Ahmaud Arbery on that day one year ago.

I think there are a few responses to this. There’s the “February was a rough month – you did the best you can” response, or the “don’t be so hard on yourself – no one really reads this blog anyway” response. But to be honest, it’s not any phantom reader that I am really apologizing to. In a sense, I am apologizing to myself. I made a commitment that the only person holding me accountable for is me, and I failed to honor that commitment. Again. Self care practices suggest that you treat yourself as you would treat another person, and that includes honoring commitments. I am known for being reliable to other people and following through with things I agree to do, but when it comes to following through with things that require internal accountability – forget it. And so, I am sorry, self, for not honoring this commitment to you (me?), and I will work harder to do better next time.

I am also apologizing to any member of the Black community that does read my blog because Black History Month matters. It’s important for poeple of all races to acknowledge the contributions and sacrifices that have been made by people of color not only throughout history, but currently as well. It’s vital that we look back through the our history through a lens of diverse of experiences, and not just the whitewashed version that we have generally been exposed to.

As a farewell to February, I am listing all the resources that I did post about throughout the month as well as links to learn more. Today is the first of March, but let’s not stop honoring Black voices. Life is a cumulative test and it’s not enough to forget the content because the unit is finished. Listen to diverse voices, invest in Black-owned businesses, read authors outside your realm of experience, watch movies that feature customs and cultures that aren’t yours, and most importantly, believe the experiences these diverse voices tell you about. Resist the urge to pushback, argue, gaslight, or defend. If the conversation makes you uncomfortable, embrace it – it’s a sign of growth.

*Resources I posted about throughout February (a microscopic sample of amazing Black change makers)*
Marah Lidey
LaTasha Morrison
Rachel Cargle
Austin Channing Brown
Vivien T. Thomas
Amanda Gorman
Kizzmekia Corbett
Thurgood Marshall
John Lewis
Simone Biles
Cicely Tyson
Black Lives Matter
Toni Morrison
Luvvie Ajayi Jones
James Baldwin
Malcom X
Ibram X. Kendi
Nannie Helen Burroughs
Bayard Rustin
Pauli Murray
Ella Baker
Claudette Colvin

Ahmaud Arbery