An Ode to Self

You slept yesterday curious about the American results.

I slept yesterday shaken by the country I am forced to call home for the next four years.

You woke up today to news of a Trump win and for many of you what followed was numerous memes of what that meant.

I  woke up to frightened bodies, afraid of what this result means for their black, Latina, Muslim, female, LGBTQ, migrant identities.

I don’t think that now is a time to talk politics so I will not. Instead I am here preaching self love and preservation.

Often, when depressed I have formed the habit of shutting out but today I want to come out in bravery to be there for anyone who needs tender love and care. I want to face the pain, feel it and sleep next to it until it is ready to disappear.

The pain of being a black female body in a world so harsh to navigate.

Indeed, it would be wrong of me not to acknowledge my privilege. I am lucky to dwell in a very liberal college in a very blue state. As a result, my sadness is acknowledged and shared. When many of my peers and I have the luxury of stopping our lives to digest this news, many people are forced to work whilst licking their wounds in so many places in the US. People who are afraid whether their medical insurance will still exist. Others who may be separated from their families. Others whose existence is now challenged by a president who calls police brutality,  “law and order”.

I don’t know if you, not being American, care about this but I hope that YAWA creates a community of women who are thoughtful and aware of the intersectionality of all these problems.

Being Kenyan, the last time I was probably excited about an election outcome was 2002 so maybe such sadness should be familiar. But somehow I had felt a certain kind of optimism before this American election in the supposed land of the free. I guess we aren’t that different after all.

Right now, I am questioning everything. I am skeptical of democracy and free speech. I am cautious of the spaces I inhibit, wary of the people I commune with given the fact that apparently, majority of them think it is okay that such a man become the Commander in Chief.

But I know I will be okay, and if you are also affected I promise that you too will.

So, where do we go from here?

More than ever now is the time to engage in creative protest. If you care about something don’t just think it, say it, do something about it. This world is filled with evil and we can’t let it drown us. In the words of Frank Ocean,

And I believe you when you say that you’ve lost all faith
But you must believe in something, something, something
You gotta believe in something, something, something

Hopefully we can get some time to process all this together and if anyone wants someone to talk to please reach out to me.

I love you even though on a day like this I know love may not feel like enough.

We shall overcome.


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