Strong Black Woman

This one may be less informative, less powerful, less valuable to you, and to the cause. But this is what is on my heart. And this is what I want to share.

I cannot speak for the whole of the black community but I can speak for myself. I am a black woman, and like many other black women (and men too), I have endured both overt and covert racism. I won’t get into every single incident, it’s painful to repeat, we’ll be here all day, and I don’t think I need to relive it all to make a point on my blog. It happened, to a lot of us, full stop.

It’s not something that’s “over there”, far away, unreachable to you. It’s something very real to the people around you in this world, and to the person who is writing this. I’m not an “aNgRy BLack wOmAN”, I’m hurting, I’m hurting for the black community. Every time I think about it, I want to cry, but I can’t, because we (black women) are told to hold our head up high, and not let things bother us. I’m meant to be a “strong black woman”.

We don’t have to fake it. I don’t have to fake it. It’s okay to cry, it’s okay to be angry and it’s okay to acknowledge the pain that you feel. Did you know that the current Black Lives Matter movement is the largest civil rights movement in the history of forever?! It’s okay if this is the first time you’ve sat and actually allowed yourself to feel anything in forever. Everything you’re feeling is valid, whether that be pain from trauma you have been through or empathy for those who have experienced it.

Let’s continue to work together, support each other and keep pushing forward.

Love Always,

Shadz xo

Introducing Black

Black is not a personality type.

Black is not a music genre.

Black is not food.

Black is not a shooting target.

Black is not a threat.

Black is not an enemy.

Black is just like you.

Black is beautiful.

Black is capable.

Black wants to achieve.

Black wants to flourish.

Black want to live.

Black Lives Matter.

You’ve posted a black square…. now what?

Tuesday 2nd June saw thousands of Instagram users posting a black square. Thousands of people standing up for Black Lives Matter, refraining from posting personal pictures, videos and stories, hashtags reading “#blackouttuesday” and “#theshowmustbepaused”. If you didn’t have a feed filled with loads of black squares, I’m convinced you’re living under a rock!

Although this was a powerful gesture, it is still not enough. You can’t just post a black square and say “yep my jobs done”, because it’s not. The fight for black rights must go beyond a singular day of posting a black square and a few quotes on your story. It has to be something you live out every single day.

I am flooded with joy when I see the amount of people supporting the movement, big companies and businesses, churches, schools, individuals all coming together to fight for equality.

Don’t be a person who posts something to jump on the trend – this movement is not a tiktok dance challenge, it’s people’s lives. Don’t remain silent when it’s time for you to speak up.

Keep posting, keep spreading awareness, keep defending, keep moving forward!

Love Always,

Shadz xo

For the next generation

I’m sure most of you have seen the news recently with the racial injustice that is happening in this world that we all live in. If you haven’t, and have somehow managed to miss it, I suggest you remove your blindfold, get on the internet and do a bit of research on it.

Although we may have progressed from the time of slavery and forced segregation, it is so obvious that the fundamental ideologies of certain individuals have not changed. This is causing the loss of lives. It is no longer enough to say “I have black friends” or to say “I’m not a racist”. Don’t get me wrong, I believe them, I believe that a lot of this generation are not racist, and that’s great, but we need to raise an anti-racist generation. People who will be proactive in speaking out and rebuking racial injustice rather than sitting and allowing it to happen because “it doesn’t affect them”. This goes for all races, not just white people, not just black people, this is not a black versus white issue, this is a social issue and we are all a part of society.

It hurts me to see that things like this happen and as a result, black people get labelled as being “angry” or just having “a chip on their shoulder” for protesting against it. No, it’s not just anger, it’s not just a cold heart, it’s living with the knowledge that this blatant brutality against black men could be against a brother, a cousin, a father, an uncle, a fellow black friend, our future children. If we don’t care enough to sort this out for ourselves, at least let’s sort it out for our children, and their children, and their children. We should not be fighting the same battles as the generation before us, nor should our babies be fighting the battles that were meant to be ours.

I’m not saying that we should use violence against anybody in a form of protest, we can’t fight hate with hate, or else it just becomes an endless cycle. I’m not even saying we all need to participate in mass marches or protests – I understand that that’s not everyone’s calling, and that’s okay. Sometimes it’s just speaking out and saying “no, that’s not okay” instead of remaining silent to avoid confrontation. Sometimes it’s challenging your family members and friends when they say something stereotypical. Sometimes it’s standing up for the stranger on the street when they are too tired to stand up for themselves. Use your position in life to make a difference!! Whether that be one that has been subject to racism or one who has been of privilege, whether you have a huge platform to speak on or simply just your mouth – use it. When EVERYONE as a society begin to work together to break down the walls of racism, bit by bit, then, and only then will we see the change that our great-grandparents, grandparents and our parents have been striving to see.

I’ll leave you with this. The apostle Peter says in the New Testament,

“Above ALL things, be EARNEST in your LOVE among yourselves, for LOVE covers a MULTITUDE of sins.” – 1 Peter 4:8.

This truth remains today & forevermore.

Love Always,

Shadz xo