"Ignorance is bliss."
How do we maintain our sanity when we’ve made a deliberate choice to acknowledge acts of oppression for what they are, instead of sweeping them under the rug? How do we continue to hope when our people are murdered without cause or chance of justice? How do we have a sense of peace when our humanity is called into question?
We’re not given the chance to be human like our white counterparts. We’re villainized and portrayed as violent and unworthy of acknowledgment or empathy. We are burdened with the responsibility of proving our innocence. When the weight of this responsibility falls upon our shoulders, our mental health suffers. We may not always recognize it but the reality is that we’re experiencing trauma.
Viewing the images and videos of Alton Sterling and Philandro Castile can easily be considered a secondary trauma. While this is true, it is much more significant when you’re mourning your Black brother and recognizing the reality that this could easily be you or a loved one. And as you share these videos in the sake of activism and solidarity, the traumatization continues.
How do we find balance with activism and soul sustainability? I’m not exactly sure...but I beg you to find a way to take care of yourself. For us to be well, we must have time to step back, grieve, mourn, process, and question. We need that moment. We need the moment to be human and hurt.
Do what you need to do to cope, your mental health depends on it. Your survival depends on it.
Redefine Enough will host Healing Spaces #Black Lives Matter this Friday, July 8th, 2016.
This will be a free space open to the public to grieve and mourn our losses and cope with our brothers and sisters. For more information, please visit our FB event.