Wow. What a wild time this is! I want to sincerely thank all of you for the shout outs, orders, calls, messages, and emails. I’ve been mostly avoiding social media for my mental health, so if I haven't responded yet, please forgive me. I’m experiencing so many difficult and confusing emotions right now and am using space to experience and process everything.
I’m a multi-racial black person. The past couple of weeks have been full of conflicting feelings and emotionally charged conversations with my own family and friends. And I’ll be honest– even I’m not sure how to adequately talk about these incredibly intense issues. There’s a lot to unpack. Maybe you’ve seen many in the BIPOC* community talking about being exhausted. The emotional burden is real and I am tired. All. The. Time.
I’d be lying if I said I’m expecting long-term meaningful change from this moment. History and experience have taught me that too many people are invested in the status quo and most of us have short attention spans. There’s a performative aspect to this whole situation that is difficult to stomach. But, I’m trying to be optimistic. I'm cautiously hopeful. I see people having the conversations we need to have. This is NECESSARY discomfort and pain. For all of us. It’s a reckoning about racial injustice that’s long overdue and it’s horrifically tragic that George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, Ahmaud Arbery, and many, many, MANY other black and brown folks were killed to get us here.
I’m sitting in that discomfort. Feeling it. I know many of you are probably scared or unsure of what to say or do, so you are being reflexive and doing things because you are afraid of a call out. I'm not saying this to be accusatory. I've been in your shoes. I get it. But I ask you to also sit in your discomfort and fear, because how will we ever learn and become better if we aren’t willing to address that first? And then take action. Educate yourself. EDUCATE YOUR CHILDREN. Have conversations with your friends and family. Many of us BIPOC folks are waiting to see who’s still with us when the dust settles. So if it's truly important to you, please do the work.
I wish I wasn’t writing this. My default state of being is happy and smiley, so I agonized about what to say and how to say it. But in the end, I just chose to be honest and say what’s on my mind. Graphic Anthology helps people connect with each other through kind words. I don’t care if we look different or have completely different political or religious views. I believe respect, kindness, and empathy belong to everyone. Connection with each other is important. It deeply matters to me and I truly believe if everyone felt that way, we wouldn’t be in this mess right now.
Look, maybe you are sitting there thinking "I just want greeting card news, not Black Lives Matter stuff!" and maybe you will unfollow and unsubscribe. If that’s you, carry on. May you be happy, healthy, and at peace. But for those of you who stay, who see me, who support me, who watch out for me and my brothers and sisters of color, thank you. I see you too.
Stay well, friends.
* Black Indigenous People of Color. You can read more about the term here.