There is a soul crushing price of being a Black American Mother in the United States. The racism eats away and endangers you enjoying your youth as a young Black girl. Lack of resources and generational wealth hinders you providing all you want for your children, a parent. Then the weathering of stress, racism, poverty and violence just erodes your spirits and soul like the grains of sands washed away by the tide, over time. This is how it is to be a Black American Mother in America. It’s a push and pull between trying to just live, trying to do better in your life, trying to survive, trying to raise your children and then having to make yourself and your child keenly aware of the danger and the perilous cost of being Black in America.
And you still have to be a good mother, a loving mother and an engage Mom. Even though, just looking at your Twitter feed, Facebook news feed, nightly news, or picking up a paper for the commute can bring you to tears and rip open your soul.
You still have to muster all your love and wrap your children in that love and prayerful spirit. You, the mother, acting as a brave sentinel protecting your children from the horrific state of hate, inequality and bias in America.
You find yourself trying to cleverly carve out ways to be happy and enjoy humanity, even though as a collective your ethnicity in America is treated like anything but a human being. You try and get your children to enjoy their childhood while warning them about death by cop, death by drugs, death by gangs and death by lack of good judgment. The juxtaposition of giving hope, teaching optimism in the midst of social despair and the news constantly showing, then celebrating aggression against Black bodies… this is the weary road for a Black Mother in America.
There are no allies. There is just us. Just your darling children and you. This is Black Motherhood in America.
There is a bright side. There are many women like us, scores upon scores of us who band together and help encourage one another, maintain our spirits and who help us emotionally sift through the rubbish heaped upon our souls. I am deeply grateful for the other Black American mothers in my life.