I attended a protest this past Saturday at the direction of my field education supervisor. Although I was more than happy to attend a protest previously, Spirit directed me against it.
In all wisdom, I needed to spiritually distance myself from the happenings.
I have wrestled through experiencing my emotions during this state of unrest. I have equally wrestled with what my embodied participation looks like. I cannot say that I have found an answer to the questions that have come up, yet I am sure that my participation in the protest provided an opportunity for me to exhale just a little more.
Background is warranted before I proceed….
Immediately upon hearing news of George Floyd’s murder, I felt myself holding my breath. It wasn’t until a week or so later–when I read the Medium article of a Duke Divinity School colleague–that I was able to exhale (just a little) for the first time.
During that first encounter with holding my breath, I felt that language was taken from me; without my words, I had no way to express my thoughts or feelings even though I am an extremely expressive person in my own opinion. Since this time, I have wrestled with how to respond, yet my desire to respond in “appropriate” ways has seemingly removed my ability to state my position in both verbal and physical ways.
I’m not one for sharing empty words and I do not believe that sharing words during this time would be without fruit. However, I realize that my influence warrants responsible participation with my mouth and/or with my body.
I suppose there are persons around me who are speaking without the same considerations. I am not them, and I cannot afford to be them, so the result is…
I don’t say much of anything at all.
That doesn’t make me proud.