After the New Year, I spent a lot of time self-reflecting. As the first month of the year comes to a close, I spent a lot of time looking past myself at what the rest of the world is up to. What makes me glow is the amount of Black women I see flourishing every day in every way. It is fact that 2017 was the year of the Black woman (debate your mama, but she probably on my side) and I can feel in my gut that 2018 will be no different.
The Black women around me are living, creating, taking chances, and spearheading projects to make visions reality. I could not be more proud and humbled to be alive to see this tangible shift in Black women claiming their things. It does however leave me to wonder what the trigger may have been. I could say time, persistence, consistent excellence, and all of those things would be true. But the aspect that I find most interesting is in my opinion the most important: Black women have collectively decided to start putting themselves first.
It’s no secret that Black women have a history of sacrificing the best of themselves for others. I have seen the women I love grin and bear it in ways they do not deserve for as long as I can remember. Whether it is in relationships, in family dynamics, in the work-place, in friendships, Black women have all had to develop the ability to shrink themselves to fit into the small spaces left for us in any setting. This is what I have seen start to disappear in the most recent years. Black women have shook the feet off their backs and stood up for their own excellence.
I myself have recently discovered the benefits of devoting myself to myself. I find that it gives me more time, more joy, and more energy to pursue the things I love. It took me a long time to make a change in this direction because I thought to focus on me meant to be selfish. Now I see that it is in fact necessary. I’d like to believe that this recent Black woman renaissance is the work of some cosmic force finally repaying us all the things we deserve. But realistically, and more beautifully, I believe that we’ve been working our way in this direction for as long as we have existed, and the world can’t pretend to ignore our brilliance anymore.
Cheers to us, may the glow never be ignored again.