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Black Lives Matter

Updated: Jun 11

There are so many emotions in the air right now. The world is purging years of fear, anger, confusion, sadness, and further complicated combinations. Some people are scared to say the wrong thing while others can’t contain themselves, screaming what they’ve known was right for so many years. That Black Lives Matter. 


People are figuring out what’s in their power to do... 

Protest!

Donate! 

Educate themselves!

Have difficult conversations!

Serve others in meaningful ways!


The COVID-19 pandemic complicates things. Some people have or live with people with health concerns. Some people are counting pennies with their unemployment support (or lack thereof) and can’t donate or decline work. But we still must do something. 


We’re all still processing. Some are motivated to jump into action and others feel numb. Some are quick to join certain aspects of the movement while others are in deep reflection of themselves and their environment. There’s also an element of performance that many feel they must prove that they’re supportive of the movement. Yet that’s not all that genuine, is it? 


I’m trying to remind myself that never is there only one way to solve something. Revealing the systemic malfunction built into our nation will take more than just protesting or just donating or just Facebook posts. This foundation needs to full-on crumble. Only then can we heal the generations of fear that caused this ongoing abuse of power. We can then rebuild a new one that serves everyone with the appropriate priorities. 


Beyonce’s song, “Freedom,” spoke to me as I researched artistic expression around the Black Lives Matter movement and police brutality. I hope it may speak to you as it did for me. There are so many modes of expression that need to be heard right now. Healing is needed not just in policy, but in our hearts. 


Tryna rain, tryna rain on the thunder

Tell the storm I'm new

I'm a wall, come and march on the regular

Painting white flags blue


Lord forgive me, I've been running

Running blind in truth

I'ma rain, I'ma rain on this bitter love

Tell the sweet I'm new


I'm telling these tears, go and fall away, fall away

May the last one burn into flames


Freedom! Freedom!

I can't move

Freedom, cut me loose

Singin', freedom! Freedom!

Where are you?

'Cause I need freedom, too

I break chains all by myself

Won't let my freedom rot in hell

Hey! I'ma keep running

'Cause a winner don't quit on themselves


I'ma wade, I'ma wave through the waters

Tell the tide, "Don't move"

I'ma riot, I'ma riot through your borders

Call me bulletproof


Lord forgive me, I've been runnin'

Runnin' blind in truth

I'ma wade, I'ma wave through your shallow love

Tell the deep I'm new


I'm telling these tears, go and fall away, fall away

May the last one burn into flames


Freedom! Freedom!

I can't move

Freedom, cut me loose

Singin', freedom! Freedom!

Where are you?

'Cause I need freedom, too

I break chains all by myself

Won't let my freedom rot in hell

Hey! I'ma keep running

'Cause a winner don't quit on themselves


Ten Hail Marys, I meditate for practice

Channel nine news tell me I'm movin' backwards

Eight blocks left, death is around the corner

Seven misleadin' statements 'bout my persona

Six headlights wavin' in my direction

Five-o askin' me what's in my possession

Yeah I keep runnin', jump in the aqueducts

Fire hydrants and hazardous

Smoke alarms on the back of us

But mama don't cry for me, ride for me

Try for me, live for me

Breathe for me, sing for me

Honestly guidin' me

I could be more than I gotta be

Stole from me, lied to me, nation hypocrisy

Code on me, drive on me

Wicked, my spirit inspired me

Like yeah, open correctional gates in higher desert

Yeah, open our mind as we cast away oppression

Yeah, open the streets and watch our beliefs

And when they carve my name inside the concrete

I pray it forever reads


Freedom! Freedom!

I can't move

Freedom, cut me loose

Singin', freedom! Freedom!

Where are you?

'Cause I need freedom, too

I break chains all by myself

Won't let my freedom rot in hell

Hey! I'ma keep running

'Cause a winner don't quit on themselves


What you want from me?

Is it truth you seek? 

Oh, Father, can you hear me?

What you want from me?

Is it truth you seek? 

Oh, Father, can you hear me?

Hear me out


"I had my ups and downs

But I always find the inner strength to pull myself up

I was served lemons, but I made lemonade"


The BlackLivesMatter website provides a number of resources and helpful tips regarding the movement. I found their Healing in Action toolkit to be particularly helpful. It provides productive self-care recommendations and reflective prompts for both individual and collective healing. Look further through the site to find resources addressing safety, trauma, and grief.


This is a time for conversation. Please e-mail me at abigail@empathingsblog.com if you’d like to discuss anything with me publicly or privately. I’d love to hear any insight or questions. 


Keep marching on,


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Insta:@empathingsblog

Facebook.com/EmpathingsBlog

#blacklivesmatter #blm #toughconversations #freedom #beyonce #covid19 #healing #foundation


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