By Jourdan Lobban •
February 2nd was Groundhog Day, although one little critter can’t possibly change the swirling halo of frigid cold we must all endure (insert sad face). It’s also one of the few precious days making up Black History Month. For 28 days (29 in leap years) the United States sets aside mandated time for celebrating the trials, triumphs, and rich flavor which comes with being a person of African descent. It goes beyond the “I Have A Dream” speech famously given by Martin Luther King Jr. (Rest in Power) and the terrifying missions Harriet Tubman went through in order to send the enslaved to freedom. There are more stories like theirs. In fact, there’s so many that it will take more than a month to even touch the surface. And that’s absolutely beautiful, because it shows just how amazing we are.
Remembering that gets super difficult at times. Between having a president that disregards our own people, politicians caught in scandals where they make Blackface en vogue, and being in a culture designed to break you down as a person, the phrase “being Black is hard” is an understatement. To my Black girls and femmes, I am telling you one thing: I see you. You know the talks we had growing up, from hair to acting “right” in school to dealing with men along with everything else. The burdens of being a Black girl come from our history of being exploited, taken advantage of, and left behind. The media, white supremacy culture, and toxic elements of the Black community contribute to feeding this narrative all the time. We only have two options: claim the narration, or change it.
For a lot of my short life, I thought I had to ask permission in order to step into my power. Going through some tough situations and experiencing plenty of pain taught me different. No one will give you that permission. You have to that yourself. Loving yourself, healing yourself, and claiming your joy back is always within your grasp. And when you can’t see it, it doesn’t change how true it is. You, Black girl, are incredibly real and really incredible. The world belongs to you. The world comes from you! People fear you because your goddess aura intimidates them. No person has ever been comfortable in the sight of a royal unless they were a royal themselves. You’re not just magic, my Black queen. You are the force which determines reality. Don’t just remember it. Live in it.
Jourdan Lobban aims to live life in all of its rising tides and calm waters, with some books, and writing journals. This article was republished on Afroféminas.