When You Need a “Do Over”
Have you ever wanted a do over? That’s how I feel about January. Maybe there was some bad juju in the air, but I didn’t feel the rejuvenation that usually comes at the beginning of a new year.
Confession: I’m one of those people who loves starting over. I love Sunday’s because I can reset from the week. I circle the first day of every new month in my planner. I mark Spring as a time to cleanse, and I thrive on getting ready for the New Year. I plot and devise plans for a New Year like a bride and groom getting ready for their nuptials. New Years fill me with hope for what is to come.
But I’ll be honest with y’all: so far, I’ve experienced a lot of “I’ll do it tomorrow,” turning into yesterday’s. I’m tired, worn down, and can’t wait to climb into my king-sized bed every night praying and wishing for a new day so I can try again.
This is the unfortunate outcome of when planners meet roadblocks. Roadblocks that become so paralyzing they lead to feelings of doubt, physical stress, and an overwhelming sense of fear. Fear...of working hard for something or someone else other than oneself and falling into a spiral of doing for others before oneself.
And, I can’t help but think of black womyn, when I am faced with these roadblocks. That there are hundreds of thousands of black womyn and girls who face these roadblocks because of a system that marginalized us in a world that we built. The trauma associated with being black is generationally embedded in our DNA. From imperialism, colonialism, cultural appropriation, slavery, apartheid, Jim Crow, the imposition of religion to control us, institutionalized racism, the AIDS epidemic, the War on Drugs and the 13th amendment. Not to mention the lack of educational or healthcare access for womyn and girls around the world.
And even with all of that trauma, we are still carrying entire nations on our backs, and fighting in the streets for our right to even walk in our communities safely. Activist fatigue, anyone?
I’ve wanted a “do over” for black womyn—one that allows us to thrive in this world—for a long time. It’s an understatement to say that my desire for a New Year for us is long overdue. But then, I think about all of the brilliant, resilient and powerful black womyn I know and I’m encouraged to keep fighting. To keep resetting until I get what I want. To keep starting over at the beginning of the week to rid my body of doubt and fear and to fill every space I can and make room for other black womyn.
So, if you’re feeling overwhelmed, tired, and need a do over, I’m with you. Talk to someone, go to that yoga class, spend time doing something you love, take deep breaths. Tomorrow is a new day, and we will be victorious.