I’ve been trying to write this blog post since I published my last post… Bear with me because I spent more time releasing my emotions rather than correcting my grammatical errors and sentence structures.
My last post (10 Ways to Make Reading Fun for Your Child) was posted on May 25, 2020. At that time, I had no idea that George Floyd had been murdered by four police officers that same day. We’d just learned about Ahmaud Arbery, and then soon after we’d learned about Breonna Taylor. Then came Rayshard Brooks…then came the news of Elijah McClain… all of the protests. Black men and women are being found hanging from trees and it’s being called suicide. For the record, history has proven that my people would never hang themselves from trees. So many of my Black brothers and sisters have been slain at the hands of white men and women. FOR GENERATIONS. My ancestors experienced this excruciating pain. My mother and uncles witnessed marches for freedom as young children. My father’s birth certificate identified him as “Colored.” I’m sure he witnessed a lot as well. There are too many to name who’ve had their lives snatched away from them by the very people who were sworn in to protect and serve our communities. Unfortunately, the pain doesn’t end there. My people are being neglected, mistreated, and killed in hospitals as well. Women are crying out and telling people about the pain they are experiencing only to be ignored and later die. Black men and women are being admitted into hospitals for treatments, but are treated poorly based on their insurance coverage or lack of insurance. Oh! And it doesn’t end there. Black women, men, and children can’t even sit in their homes or enjoy time with loved ones without being at risk of being murdered by people in their very own communities. The list goes on, but I’m exhausted.
I’m exhausted because I am not only a wife to a beautiful, strong, Black king who unfortunately has a target on his back, but I am also the mother of two beautiful Black princesses. I’ve seen so many women speak out about their fears of being mothers to Black boys, but it’s been heavy on my heart to share what it’s like to mother Black daughters. It is said that “Fear is not an attribute of the Lord,” but jeez! I’m telling you it’s very hard to not fear for my daughters these days.
Being the mother of Black daughters means praying that:
-Your daughter does not have to mourn or grieve the loss of her Black father due to violence or jail (wrongfully convicted because we know that has happened for generations).
-She doesn’t have to grow up without you due to medical professionals neglecting you before, during, or after your pregnancy with her or her sibling.
-She will never be mistreated or neglected by those very same medical professionals.
-Her virginity will never be stolen from her by a sick man or woman.
-She will not be subjected to sexual harassment or rape because she “shouldn’t have been alone,” or “should have dressed differently.”
-No one sexualizes your baby PERIOD.
-She won’t be kidnapped and put into human trafficking.
-She will live and have the ability to conceive and bear children.
-She will never be physically, verbally, mentally, or emotionally abused by an insecure, toxic man.
-She will never lose her voice because she doesn’t want to be perceived as angry, aggressive, or less than.
-She won’t be discriminated against because of the hue of her skin, or her natural curls.
-She will always find herself beautiful in a world that celebrates either being the size of a model or having a figure like a video vixen.
-She will love her hair regardless of the texture.
-She will be taken seriously, valued, and seen as an excellent contribution to any team, role, or business where a man normally finds his place easily.
-She will continue to love her name even though it’s not white enough for job application and interview sake.
-She won’t be a single mother because of violence brought upon her Black husband.
-She doesn’t have to deal with the pain of losing her Black child to the very same thing that your prayers kept her safe from.
-She will know her worth in a world that demeans and spits on Black women.
-She won’t encounter a racist child on the playground because of their hateful parents.
-She doesn’t hide her pain because she is supposed to be a strong Black woman.
-She celebrates her Blackness and womanhood ALWAYS.
-She doesn’t get murdered in her own home while sleeping, and the murderers still walk freely.
The list goes on and on…
Mothering Black children is one of the most beautiful and fulfilling things I’ve ever done, but it is also the most difficult thing I’ve ever done. I’ve had so many tough conversations with my child and she is only 8. Why she can’t walk too far ahead of me, and never to walk behind me. I’ve coached her on how to watch my back when I’m strapping her and her sister into the car. How a man should never put his hands on her. How all police officers are not bad, and there are still some good ones out there. I’m constantly comforting her through her fears when her father leaves to go back to work in his truck to drive across a country that hates him. Trying to teach her that kind white people do exist when I’m teaching her History, although she’s witnessing the same murders and protests happening this very day. I’m constantly spewing love and affirmations into my girls to teach them to speak life into and over themselves now and forever.
Black mothers have to teach our children that they may hear terrible things or be mistreated simply because they are Black. Black mothers are steadily raising their children to hold their heads high and to always stand up for themselves. We still teach our children to love and respect others. I’m a God-fearing and loving woman, but let me tell you that is very hard to do. It’s so hard to keep a soft heart in such a cold world. Teaching your children to still love others requires you to steer clear of the hardness that is trying to make its way to your heart to make sure you raise a good human being. Whew!
I’m praying over my daughters about things that I’m still praying about for myself, my sister, cousins, friends, and Black women across the world. I’m having conversations with my daughter about things that I’m still trying to digest and understand myself.
Sincerely, a Black mother.