A Realization That Rocked Me....•
Posted on June 02 2020
Hey there magic makers,
I’m writing to you with a really heavy heart today. I can’t unsee the videos, images, mean words and violent acts over the last few weeks. As an empath, I have the tendency to deeply absorb the emotions of those around me, and this weekend really hit me hard. My Little Magic Shop really does try to avoid political topics as much as possible. Not because we don’t care, but because my vision is for MLMS to be a place where anyone can come and feel safe, free from judgement of their beliefs, politics, background, past mistakes. I truly believe that we are all on our own individual journeys, growing as quickly or slowly as our souls need to grow. Those journeys should not be judged as they are sacred, unique and complicated. However, I feel compelled to speak now because honestly, I’m freaking out by what is and has been happening in America. For those of you that don’t know, I’m an African Jamaican American woman who has been very hesitant about even putting a photo out there next to the word Founder and I think I’ve just uncovered why.
Shortly after watching the video of Amy Cooper, I started to have flashbacks of the many times I’ve helplessly watched someone wield their influence, power and privilege over me. Sometimes it was conscious, sometimes it wasn’t, sometimes I couldn’t even tell if it was or wasn’t. I recalled the times when my only option was to play my role and take the other girl to coffee to mend a conflict I did not start. The time my roommate told me to stop dressing so black because it will make me look less intimidating. The time that I was accused of plagiarism when I was 16, my freshman year at NYU, because my professor couldn’t believe I could write the way I did. How I had to show up with proof to appease her and she still gave me a C-. The time my mom cried to me as she explained that wearing an afro to a job interview might discredit me. The many times I’ve been the only person of color in the room. The time my CEO said the n word twice while she sat next to me. The times I’ve felt that if I didn’t make myself smaller in some way, my life could become very difficult. To even last week when a new neighbor in my own fucking apartment building made me feel like I didn’t belong in the elevator of a condo I’ve lived in for almost 15 years. I understand only a fraction of what that gentle bird watcher felt that day. I have only feared being fired or expelled, but never for my actual life. But, oh how I know that feeling of disbelief and shock, the feeling of disempowerment, that knowing there was little I could say that wouldn’t be dismissed or called overly sensitive.
After Amy, a video of the CNN anchor getting arrested on live television happened. He said and did everything right, he was eloquent, he was calm and accommodating, and still, just like that, his hundreds of hours of air time, the journalism degree, the team of white folks around him, meant nothing. He wasn’t even given a reason for his arrest. My heart is so heavy, ya’ll. And, I haven’t yet brought myself to watch the video of George Flyod. I think I will break if I do. I don’t want to break. I want to be here bringing you guys as much magical stuff as I possibly can. I want to continue to work through my pain, insecurities, energetic blocks and stand in the same magic, just like I ask you guys to. I want to continue to accumulate skills and practices so I can share them all with you. But, I’m scared…
In my mind, I always felt like if I was nice enough, smart enough, educated enough, polite enough, kind enough, certified enough and all these other enoughs, then maybe my blackness would not matter. That maybe folks that didn’t look like me, would accept me or at the very least not sabotage or harm me. If I just worked harder, I would be promoted and could climb the corporate ladder or even build the company of my dreams. As I’m writing this letter, I’m having the realization that I have been hiding. I’ve created a company that I’m scared of showing my face too. I think because of my experiences in life as a black woman, especially in the corporate world, I’ve been secretly (or unconsciously?) worrying if the tribe I’ve worked so far to build will still shop, learn and grow with me when they realize the founder is a woman of color. Realizing this makes my heart hurt so badly. I wonder how many others out there, struggling with this same anxiety. I think of how long it took me to even unpack this fear, of all the crying I’ve done to get here today.
I’m grateful I am here now because I understand that the only way I can tackle this is with your support, all of you, white, black, brown, purple, fairy dust-covered, every one of you. Will you stand with me in supporting all the brave folks out there protesting for me and those that look like me? Will you pray for our safety? Will you be willing to look into your own shadows, fears and conditioning? Will you make an effort to seek to understand those different than you? Will you now try to be more conscious of the unconscious beliefs you might hold that perpetuate racism in our country? Will you ask yourself the tough questions? Are you truly ready to become the lightworkers the world is calling for? I sure hope so. Here are some of the ways you can answer yes.
Get to know more people of color
Reach out to the folks of color you already know, listen to what they have to say
Talk to your kids and/or family members about race
Mentor a person of color
Donate to Black Lives Matter or another organization that supports the black community
Support the protestors or get out there and protest yourself
Educate yourself about systemic biases and structures that contribute to inequality
Recognize when you are in a homogenous room and insist on more minority participation
Challenge your own stereotypical beliefs
Support and invest in minority-owned businesses, here’s one that sells BLM supportive gear.
If you see something, say something. Call inequality out.
If you feel stuck, please email me or comment below. I dream of an open and transparent community where we can support each other, have uncomfortable and vulnerable conversations. I want to really show up for you, as you grow, as much as I want you to show up for me, as I come out of my shadow. I pray that’s not too much to ask. Seems like a fitting start to eclipse season, right? Let’s heal together.
Stay safe out there, love you long time,
Shereen, Founder of My Little Magic Shop
PS. For those of you who already knew I was black and have made an effort to check in on me, I fucking love you. You are magical af. Thank you for the kind words and love sent my way. It means alot. You are part of the reason I feel empowered enough to even write this note.
PPS. For any of you that have intentions of trying to invalidate my experience or writing something really nasty to me including anything pertaining to all lives matter, please just click the unsubscribe button at the bottom of this email or the x button off my site. You are obvi not ready to acknowledge your shadows and you are no longer welcomed here. I can’t deal with any more bad vibes. I’m turning a new leaf and that once includes folks who want to muddle through their junk as I muddle through mine. You ain’t brave enough for this homie. xx