Saturday a student asked me how I was feeling about all that is going on.
I Inhaled and the word that I exhaled and spoke was brave.

Brave, not because I have things stored, coffers, a stash, or any one/institution/system to come to my rescue.

Brave, not as if there is not a single fear rattling me awake each night because there is. Like, what world have I brought my beloved son into?

Brave, not because somehow I know Sacred Chill {West} will still be standing after all of this. I don’t know that.

Brave because of what I have already lived through:
Food, clothes, and housing insecurity
Lack of access to equitable and safe education
Limited means of transportation
Rationing of everyday “essentials”: soap, toilet paper, tooth paste, hot water
Unreliable consistency in utilities

I could go on.This was part of my childhood reality despite my mama working two jobs and me working as early as 14 years old.

I come from a forgotten place.

In this historical moment, I have been looking back at that place in wonder and remembering.

I have been looking back through the pages of my memory in order to Gather courage.

That place that raised me demanded I learn to be brave, even when scared. If not, I would have been a prisoner of fear from my first breath.

And so perhaps it’s time for us all to look back.
And see where you have made it through in spite of fear, uncertainty, and hardship.
Look back and remember the bottom of the valleys that you’ve risen from.
Look back and honor the beasts you’ve fought. Perhaps you have the scars to remind you.
You are still here. And will be.

Look back and then look here.

Look here and see what resources you really truly need to see you through.

Decide to look and see a way through.

Image: Where I am from: Gainesville, Georgia