I sit here with a blank page not knowing what to say or where to start. I’d fight for you, I’d take a literal and proverbial bullet for you…but that’s not what you want nor what you need. Rather my fight should be focused on disrupting a system that favors me over you.
The problem is, I don’t know how to fight that fight. But I’ll try. I can’t undo what I’ve already done. I can’t unlearn nearly 40 years of acculturation into a system that favors people who look like me. I can’t teach myself about thoughts, words, phrases, and actions that may be problematic if I don’t know that they are in the moment I display them.
However, I can make a promise.
I promise to unlearn as much as I can in the years I have left. Though, it will never be enough.
I promise to learn the truths and many perspectives of others. Though, it will never be enough.
I promise to read. Though, it will never be enough.
I promise to dedicate my time, talent and re$ource$ in order to try to pay back the harm my people have caused. Though, it will never be enough.
I promise to pay closer attention and call out symptoms and actions of systemic racism when I see, hear, feel, and read them. Though, it will never be enough.
I promise to decrease the time needed in reflection to notice the issues previously stated in order to responded closer to the moment at hand. Though, it will never be enough.
I promise to help educate my people. Though, it will never be enough.
I promise to raise a privileged son whose eyes are as open I can get them so that he may continue along this path of waking and disruption. Though, it will never be enough.
My promise will never be enough. I will get it wrong and mess it up way more than I will get it right. I will find grace and let go of perfection in the journey of becoming better today than I was yesterday.
It’s too late for our wilting friendship to blossom. The damage of my ignorance has been done. Today, I find peace in my heart and an abundance of gratitude for your impact on my journey. I promise to learn from this moment and do better tomorrow; even though it will never be enough.
photo credit: Cymone Wilder On Drible