GOOD-BYE 2020! HELLO STEPPING INTO MY PURPOSE!
I haven't posted a blog in over a year, and my apologies for this. 2020 was the year, right? Things happened that none of us were expecting. One of the most devastating was COVID-19. It changed what we knew to be our "norm" into a distant memory. I was in a state of constant fear and worry. My life has changed to guarding myself from getting this deadly virus that had taken the lives of so many. My heart goes out to their families, and I take a moment of silence in memory of those lives taken.---
During my yearlong hiatus, I couldn't write. I couldn't put my thoughts, my feelings, into words, on paper or vocal. Every day I watched the news and things kept seeming bleaker. My anger, my pain, and the injustices consumed me. Have you ever felt like that? If so, what do you do? How do we make sense out of the senseless? We speak up and speak out. Use our words, use our voices. You are stronger than you know. Our nation will try to tell you that you are nothing; that you have no voice; and that no matter how hard you try, you will never be equal to some. DON'T LISTEN!
Black Lives Matter!! There have been those who have said and will say, "Blue Lives Matter and All Lives Matter". First of all, there are no blue people. Choosing the profession of being a law enforcement officer is not the same as being black or a person of color. For black law enforcement officers when they take off their uniform, their color doesn't come off with it. They are still black. A dear friend of mine, who is a black man and who lost his wife in the line of duty, was pulled over and his experience was the usual one that black men and women receive. Later, after they ran his information, they asked him, "why didn't you say you were one of us?" Why would he have to say that? Why should he have told them that his wife was in law enforcement and was killed in the line of duty? Because according to law enforcement, they protect their own; but what about protecting and serving ALL, not just their own.
For those who say, "All Lives Matter", well, yes, all lives do matter. However, for centuries, black people have been told that their lives didn't and doesn't matter. We have been beaten, tortured, and killed. For centuries, we have had everything stripped from us, our homes, our families, our dignity. Yet, still we are not considered "EQUAL". My father fought in WWII, for this country, this great nation of equality. When he got out, there was a GI Bill that was established to help veterans with their education, start a small business, or purchase a home. According to the G.I. Bill - Definition, Forever GI Bill & Benefits - HISTORY website, from 1944 to 1949, nearly 9 million veterans received close to $4 billion from the bill’s unemployment compensation program. This benefit was primarily afforded to white veterans. My father didn't receive any of these benefits. By this, he and other black men were again told their lives didn't matter. This type of behavior has continued and is prevalent still today. We are continuously being shown how society and law enforcement sees black lives and people of color. My heart, thoughts and prayers go out to the families of those who have had a terrible, homicidal loss; To say the names a few, Rayshard Brooks, George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, Atatiana Jefferson, Quawan Charles...; I take moments of silence just in saying their names.
2020 tried to break me. It put words of doubt, discouragement and less than in my mind and the minds of many of us, but we've taken and are getting our voices back. The nation has heard our voices through protests and through voting. Are we where we should be? NO! But when we decide we are no longer going to let others speak our truth, tell our stories, then we are on going in the right direction.
As I enter 2021, I will not make any resolutions. But, I will make a conscious decision to be the BEST me I can be; to not allow others to define my value; and to ALWAYS speak my truth. In every place I have worked, I have been the only person of color, the only black person, in the office. I have always had the fear that anyone could say I did something, by simply saying, "it was that black lady..." and that would be all the description they would need. No longer will I allow this to stop me from striving, growing. I have made the decision to live with and for a purpose. I was not created to be the footstool of those who want to oppress me. I was created for GREATNESS!
Please join me in my decision! If you no longer want to just exist through life, but live your life, join me. Use this year to find your purpose and STEP INTO IT!