As a child, I could always feel the energy and emotions of others. I could feel and sense lower energies as well as higher energies or “spirits” as the church would call it. My grandmother would take me to people’s homes who were sick (mostly elderly) and I would “lay hands” on them and pray for them. One of my grandmother’s friends had breast cancer. When I was around the age of 7, my grandmother took me to her home and I gave her a gift (a picture I colored) and I laid my hands on her and prayed for her healing. Her cancer went into remission and she’s lived cancer free. My grandmother’s friend and her husband would always visit my grandmother and remind her of how they appreciated me praying for her and how my prayers ushered healing into her body and soul. She still has that picture I colored for her over 20+ years later.
As a child, I used to write short stories about healing too. I was called the “prayer warrior” of my family. When someone needed: clarity, hope, or a word from God, my family would call on me to pray. I’ve always considered it an honor to be a conduit of God’s love. I grew into a young woman that dedicated my life to healing in various ways including professionally. I earned a BA degree in Psychology, worked in child welfare services, and currently work as a family engagement specialist for underserved communities. I’ve always loved to spreading joy and hope.
However, this doesn’t always feel good. Oftentimes, I can feel the weight of the world on my shoulders. I can feel the pain of others around the world in addition to my own and I feel like my prayers, financial, and social efforts can only go so far. I cry for the unprotected children, the degradation of women and womanhood, and those oppressed and exploited by racism and greed. I weep for all that human depravity has destroyed. Many people would call me an empath and that church would call me an intercessor. However, I admit that learning to enforce my energetic boundaries is truly necessary and it is a work in progress.
I have always wondered and been inquisitive about humanity, divinity, and the Christian faith I was raised in. I couldn’t understand how there existed such a loving God, a depraved creation, and inevitable painful life experiences. Growing up within my faith communities, we were taught not to question God. I often wondered how could I get understanding without seeking truth? It bothered me that there seemed not to be a safe place for people to grieve without being told to “be strong.” Nevertheless, I kept on questioning and still to this day, I question and muse without shame.
This year has been so debilitating for the world and particularly, black people in America. I’ve also endured both a miscarriage and a stillbirth this year. This pain has induced so much spiritual unrest within me. Still, I seek higher truth and inner peace. In an effort to help this grief move through me, I created this blog series. I may not find all of the answers about the external world, but I can learn more about myself. I can learn how to feel more at home within my own soul.
I set out with the intention to use this blog as a safe space for lamenting. People weep, people grieve, and people deserve a safe space where they do not have to appear positive, jolly, or “well put together” all of the time. This blog was not only birthed through pain, but it was birthed through courage, hope, and authenticity. As I write each word, I exercise a great measure of vulnerability and transparency. I show up in this space very human. This space is not my highlight reel, but a diary when my soul feels weary from grief. This space moves stuck energy through introspection. This is an exercise of radical and unconditional self-love. Researcher and storyteller Dr. Brene Brown stated, “loving ourselves through the process of owning our story is the bravest thing we will ever do. Every time we choose courage, we make everyone around us a little better and the world a little braver.”
This blog does not center pessimism, but authenticity, bravery, and hope. I’m encouraging both myself and others to show up, authentically. It’s perfectly healthy to lament. There is an entire book of the bible dedicated to it. I hope that someone other than myself can feel seen and connected while experiencing a debilitating emotion, such as grief. Let’s virtually hold hands, inhale and exhale together as we ponder, process, and release. This is a safe space.