Can You Feel My Heart?
I have been trying to find the words for the last few days to properly express my emotions during this time of unrest in our country.
I am BLACK.
I am a BLACK WOMAN.
I am a BLACK EVENT PROFESSIONAL.
I am a BLACK BUSINESS OWNER.
I am tired. I am exhausted. I am angry. I am hurt. I am broken. I have prayed. I have cried. I have clenched my fist in anger. I have watched in despair the absence of love. I have listened to the silence of leadership. I have felt the overwhelming exhaustion of multitasking the trauma of life dealing with a pandemic, violence, chaos, running a business and still trying to live a personal life all at the same time.
Yes, we love to see the beautiful but how can I share it right now when there are actual people in this world who do not see the beauty in my skin color. There are people who can't see my heart or my passion for what I do because I don't look like them. I have walked in venues to do events where I was judged for being a black event designer and hearing the whispers and having my every move watched to see what kind of work I will do. Only to be met with shock that it is tasteful and elegant. One time, I even had an attendee of an event think I was stealing when I went to pick up my rentals after an event I designed. Can you imagine?? I was actually being accused of stealing MY own things even though I was clearly wearing my company logo on my shirt. ALL BECAUSE OF THE COLOR OF MY SKIN. These actually REALLY happened and are just a few instances. I have other stories to tell but now is not the time - better yet, I shouldn't even have these stories to tell.
So you see... I can't for the life of me post about the joy of celebrating events and choosing to find the joy right now without expressing what is really going on internally with me first. I know a lot of people say don't mix personal thoughts, politics or religion in your business but I NEED to do just that. I can't sit and hide what I look like externally. I can't take my skin off like an outfit, so why should I be silenced by the emotions of my heart internally. If you support me, then great but if you don't I understand that too. If I lose followers or potential and current clients then so be it. People who look like me are dying... they are being MURDERED!!! Their blood staining the streets and the hearts of this nation just for the color of their skin.
As a descendant of slaves, whose 4th great grandmother, a slave was just honored last year with a bridge named in her memory for her courage in turmoil - I must pick up the mantle of her spirit and shine the light of truth on injustices. I will use my platform to speak out about righting the wrongs done to the people who look just like me. Silence is not an option. This is centuries and generations of pent up pain and torment that we can no longer take anymore. ENOUGH IS ENOUGH. I don't have all the words to articulate my emotions right now nor do I have all the answers to solve the problem going forward but what I do know is...
▪︎Being black is not a crime
▪︎Being black does not make us less than
▪︎Being black does not mean we have no value
▪︎Being black does not mean that we can be hunted and targeted
▪︎We want to live.
▪︎We want to love.
▪︎We want to breathe.