SELF-CARE DURING A NATIONAL PANDEMIC-RACISM

I had these emotions come over me for like a week straight, and I didn’t know what to do. I was crying one minute, debating another, engaging on social media, and then sad the next. But I felt like we all deserve to have those emotions, especially with the ongoing battle of racism in our country. It’s exhausting! I’ve been extremely scared for my boyfriend to be out of my presence with fear that I will never see him. I’m fearful for my dad’s life (especially being that he works in people’s homes). I’m fearful for my brother(s) life and the kids that they will eventually bring into this world. I’m fearful for us all. 

The horrific deaths of Ahmuad Arbery, Breonna Taylor, and George Flyod should not have happened. We are all terrified of going out and being involved. Should it be like that? NOPE! But we are dealing with it. We as Black People have been living with the country’s brand of racism since we arrived here in 1619. We have endured so much from bondage, livelihoods that are destroyed before and after Reconstruction, and fighting our way through a segregated society. Clearly, we are some tough and strong people right? 

WRONG. We have to give ourselves a break at one point. Nobody is to assume that we can push through, smile, and be okay. We are humans and we have emotions. If you don’t understand what we are actually going through: and if you want to show empathy to them, say this: “While I can’t understand what you are going through, I know that this right here that you are going through is real, and I stand with you!” And make sure to inform them about how you are supporting issues of injustice and ask them how you can support them as well. 

Of course, if you hear us understanding the rage behind the destruction, don’t for one second think that we condone it at all. But, one thing for sure: Black people don’t have to apologize for being angry. 

Even through some of these tough times, we have to take responsibility for our mental health and put our feelings first in these trying times, here are some ways to do that: 

  1. Take some time to understand the rage that is happening in you right now. We all know that we are constantly tolerating being uncomfortable which means swallowing our anger for our own survival. 
  2. Respect the sadness that you may be encountering. Sit in your emotions. Take some days to think. Be with your pain. And of course, don’t tell yourself that you need to get over it, or don’t allow someone else to tell you too. And don’t let white people off the hook. You want them to do the work of trying to understand and knowing right from wrong. 
  3. Take some time and get off of ALL SOCIAL MEDIA! Oh, and don’t look at the news! Literally watching both videos of Ahmuad Arbery, and George Flyod are just smeared in our minds. It’s truly hard to come back from that and be fine with everything. When we continuously watch things over and over again, of course it becomes a trauma that is implanted so deeply to the victim. So take the time that you do have from not being tied to the media, and give yourself some time to work and laugh (and don’t feel guilty about it all). 
  4. Let go of the narrative of not getting help from anyone, and take your mental health serious. Seek out to a therapist. Not sure if you have seen the text to seek help floating around on the stories of everyone, but if you come across it, don’t be afraid to text that number. 

We’re all in this together. We won’t stop fighting, until we see the change that needs to happen in this nation. ✊🏽✊🏾✊🏿 #blacklivesmatter #unitedwestand

Never forget: I’M PROUD TO BE BLACK! 👏🏽👏🏽

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