Here we are again.. watching history repeat itself again. Watching racism rear it’s ugly head again. Watching police brutality get minimized by the people it doesn’t seem to affect as much, again. Watching people protest for change, justice, and equality AGAIN!!!!
As I mentioned in my last post: I. AM. TIRED!
I’ve been sitting in physical silence a lot lately, but my thoughts have been loud! I am an empath so I’ve honestly just been drained. In all of my pondering, I asked myself: If I am this tired as a woman of color, I can’t begin to imagine how my black brothers are feeling.
So, I asked some of them. I asked three amazing black men that I know, love, and value: How did you feel waking up this morning as a black man in America?
I asked them on a Sunday and all three men took between 16 and 48 hours to get back to me. I knew they would need time to answer, but I honestly didn’t think they would take as much time as they did. That alone told me so much before even reading their responses. The longer they took, the more hurt and frustrated I knew they felt. Here’s what they said —
The third response was sent in a voice message. His response was, “Couldn’t type it up. I really, honestly don’t have energy to type emotions at this moment… At this point I’m fatigued. I’m extremely fatigued phyiscally, mentally, emotionally.. just overall fatigued. I feel a sense of being conditioned and not in a light of being to conditioned not to do something but to be more dangerous. Being whoever I have to be at any given moment is starting to be more than just a saying but a lifestyle. Not in a sense of me disliking someone just because, but in a sense of me just having to protect myself to make it home. So… as that black man, to keep that balance on a daily basis always just takes me back to the fact that I am just tired. Tired of seeing what I’m seeing. I’m tired of the issue not being addressed properly. I’m tired of the situation getting ignited more and more in a negative light. That’s not helping anyone. Just frustrated as a dad knowing that I may not be here to see my kids grow up or my kid may not be here. It’s just extremely frustrating. I wish I had more words. I wish I had a better dialogue but I’m just extremely tired and I don’t see a finish-line right now.“
Did your heart break as much as mine did? Reading their words, hearing the pain in his voice… The emotions that I feel are beginning to be indescribable.
Two of these men participated in local protests recently and I’ll admit, I was scared for them. I prayed for them until I knew they had made it home safely. My nerves were on edge the entire time. I knew that they needed to participate though. They needed to get out and physically makes their voices heard. While I was frightened, I was also very proud.
Their responses to my question and watching them in action brought out a heightened sense of protection in me. I feel that almost all black women were born with the instinct to protect the black man at all cost and it burns even brighter now. We have to help them. We have to care for them. We have love on them.
So I asked a follow-up question to some: As a black man, what do you need your woman to do in order to help you during this time, if there’s even anything she can do.
This was the general consensus:
So I asked myself: Have I created a safe space for the black men that I know and love? Am I a safe space for the beautiful black man that I lay beside every night? I think you should ask yourself the same questions. (This applies to all people but I’m primarily talking to my fellow WOC right now.)
Yes, all POC need to be uplifted right now. Yes, we all need help to bring a change. Yes, we all need your love and solidarity. But, think about how most men are already conditioned to hold in emotions. Now imagine that being tenfold as a black man. These men need us.
I wrote a poem originally after Trayvon Martin was murdered and I wrote a post back dedicated to my black brothers back in February. My feelings remain the same but I’m hoping that the tide is changing.
I came across a post that summed up my feelings towards black men almost perfectly:
To all the black men I know, and even those I don’t, I can promise that you will always have a safe space within the black woman’s arms.
Also..To all the non-poc’s who are allies that I know and don’t know, thank you for helping to carry the torch of change with us (figuratively and literally).
To the three black men who chose to be open and honest with me about their feelings, thank you. I see you. I hear you. I am here for you. I love you.
Black men, YOU MATTER!
Black women, YOU MATTER!
Black children, YOU MATTER!
BLACK LIVES MATTER!
BLACK. LIVES. MATTER!!!!! ✊🏻✊🏼✊🏽✊🏾✊🏿
Until next time; Be YOU. Do YOU. LOVE YOU💜