White Spaces: A Mother’s Reckoning

The parade in our town today clarified what I have done as a white woman with bi-racial children…

To all the times I brought my children to white spaces, moved to white neighborhoods, enrolled them in white schools- I am sorry and deeply ashamed of my ignorance.

I feel it now, more than ever- these words: “white supremacy is not a shark; it is the water. “ Guante

I get a small taste of the terror and discomfort, the trauma of being a brown body in this water. I am angry, which is a privilege of white skin, at the levels of energy it takes to accommodate and appease this white nonsense- to play nice in white work places- and can only imagine their exhaustion.

I feel this whiteness in a way I never have and I’m horrified. As though I’ve fully awakened from a spell that made me live as if this water was made for everyone. It’s not.

This awakening was and is a process that I want ALL white people to be responsible for. To believe in white superiority, to attach to whiteness is one of the biggest lies ever believed. It will crush those who don’t realize this. And so be it because the water is changing.

To my children, I wish I had understood sooner. It was thoughtlessly out of touch of me to be blind to this part of you. I fell in love with a black man. I wanted a family. I believe in the divine within us and most of your upbringing I ignored your experience as also a human being in brown skin, barely swimming in this water, but mostly isolated and struggling not to drown in it.

No apology can erase the impact of this. And I’m not here to give false hopes and promises in a nation still deeply young and divided, struggling to know itself. But I do see you and hold the space for all of you and all of your experiences more than I ever have, and it is my deepest desire that this water nourishes, supports and allows for splashing, deep dives and takes you to wherever you want to go.

~Mom

The Soul Reporter

Balance Shmalance

Sweatshirt. Sweatpants. Hair gray and uncut for several months. No exercise. Eating carbs. Daughter spending too much time in her room.

Signs my life is completely out of balance. But I’m not concerned. When I wore Missoni and Ralph Lauren, never going beyond 8 weeks for a fresh cut and color, worked out at the Y or with a trainer and every meal was gluten-free- there was one necessary agenda item missing- work.

But now, I’m working. Writing, actually. Looking for agents. Contacting published authors. Writing pitches. Gathering material for an outline and a proposal. All this in preparation for finally putting all my pieces together to form a book. I’ve never taken the time to do this, but I have taken the time for many other things, most of which did not satisfy for long.

It occurred to me today, as I looked at the dishes piling up in the sink that- at this point in my journey to work is paramount. Yes, my children, especially the 11-year old may feel I am not available even though I am two steps away in my bedroom, but for 19 years, I’ve been available full time to them. And if I want to spoil my grandbabies someday, and if I want that life I’ve imagined I must work. If I want to answer the only call calling right now, I must work.

On the surface, my life may look out of balance, and even if it is, I am willing to be off kilter for awhile because I know once I am established in my work, my other great mission here on the planet, these other pieces like new hair and clothes and fun times with the kids will fall into place.

So, here I go.  More, here I am. In a new space. Absorbed. Willing to wear my sweatpants and look like a grub for just a while longer.

I look forward to sharing more of this new journey with you.

Namaste,

The Soul Reporter