I cried at my desk on Wednesday. I didn’t mean to cry. I tried to fight back the tears and repress the sniffles. I lost.
I cried at my desk on Wednesday. As my lips quivered, I bit down to steady them. I reached for a tissue to dry my tearducts. I squeezed my fists in a tight ball to will myself to stop. I couldn’t.
I cried at my desk on Wednesday. The last time I cried was when we buried one of my many earthly mothers. I realized that I’d never get to hear her voice again. I felt lumps in my throat and let out sounds that I didn’t even know my vocal chords could produce. I tried to remain strong for her. I wasn’t.
I cried at my desk on Wednesday. I watched a woman be threatened by someone who had sworn to “Protect and Serve”. I saw her refuse to bend to his will, defiantly unyielding to his arrogance. I heard her vocalise her rights. I witnessed her being pulled from her car and shoved around. I felt the break in the voice as fear crept in while she was face down. I should have turned away. I didn’t.
I cried at my desk on Wednesday. I picked myself up. I carried on at work as if nothing had happened. I pretended that this visceral pain and tightening feeling in my chest were phantom pain. I recognized that those around me didn’t share the same burden. And those who did, were also buckling under its weight. I was furious, sad, distraught, helpless, hopeless etc… I still am.
white supremacy/police brutality/institutionalized racism are trying to force us to live in fear and witness an attempt at our systematic extinction. Then we consume images of the violence perpetuated against Black and Brown bodies and experience secondary post-traumatic stress symptoms. We’re defiantly clamoring in the streets to say that we matter, while privately hoping that someone will be there to hold on to us when we need to crumble.
The violence that we experience doesn’t end at the hands of law enforcement.
There’s violence in the mass consumption of images that remind us why we have to proclaim that “Black lives matter!” There’s violence in being surrounded by people who are oblivious to your pain. There’s violence in having to carry around this anger and hurt in order to be reminded that there’s still so much work to be done. There’s violence in having to smile and pretend when Black bodies are being gunned down. There’s violence beyond the physical wounds inflected to our brothers and sisters.
I cried at my desk on Wednesday. I also cried at my desk on Thursday. I can’t seem to stop crying…