I have always been enamored with the sky. Each morning I look up and the sky reminds me that everyday is a new day, subject to change without notice. One day last week, the sky was filled with smoky clouds trying to contain a sun whose breakthrough would not be denied. Yesterday the sky was a vibrant hue of blues combined with a dynamic expression of colorful movement by the clouds and this morning the sky was like a blank canvas waiting for the artist to be inspired. My life is like the sky, constantly changing.
During this pandemic, my work has accelerated but my life has slowed down. I've been challenged to rethink my priorities. What I thought was important isn't as important as I once believed. During this time, I've recognized this intersectionality between privilege, pain and purpose. I've been afforded the privilege of being able to do meaningful work remotely and never leaving the comforts of my home, unless I choose to do so. At the same time, I struggle because many family members and others do not have that same choice, as they risk their lives every day to survive or to serve on the frontlines to help save others. With privilege comes responsibility to be a part of an integrated solution that takes into account health, the economy, environment, policies, and just as importantly, spirituality. Yes. I believe that faith and spirituality are a required part of the solution, unless we include faith into the conversation, history shows us that we'll find ourselves repeating mistakes of the past.
This pandemic has amplified, exposed and accelerated generations of pre-existing issues in our community, especially for people of color. Personally, I've experienced the pain and the uncertainties of this pandemic and at the same time a reminder that Black lives are always at risk and with that comes an ongoing trauma that only those who live in our skin can understand.
By slowing down, simple pleasures like drinking a hot cup of tea with fresh lemon, ginger and honey, or just chilling on my patio listening to the birds freestyle in song and daily check-ins with my parents to hear about their day, have become priceless gifts that I cherish like a breath of fresh air. These moments have provided much needed perspective and sanctuary as I wrestle with these questions:
- What really matters?
- If I have only 30 days left how would spend those days?
- What is my personal responsibility and how do I leverage my privilege to serve others?
- What will my legacy be?