Basking in all things Black
The leaky tub faucet dripped water in sync to my six year old, Liam’s toothbrush strokes. The sounds were a current playlist of our morning routine. I reminded my son to brush both the roof of his mouth and his tongue before he put his toothbrush away. His baby sister, Zora, an arm’s length away stood on a black stepstool in front of their bathroom sink. I brushed my daughter’s hair. She asked for space buns. Though tender headed and only two, I obliged Zora’s request and found myself seriously concentrating on perfecting the swoop directions of her baby hairs.
Mornings in our home are always busy, but the moments we spend gathered together in the bathroom feel like needed communion. Some of the deepest conversations happen at 8am in my kid’s bathroom.
“Guess what, guys?” I asked my kiddos. “Do you know what this month is about?” I continued.
“It’s about Jesus!” Liam said confidently.
I laughed out loud and explained, that while yes, every month is about Jesus, today commences the first day of Black History Month! Confused yet intrigued, Liam asked what that meant. While answering his question, I felt these words bounce off my tongue, like hands dancing on an African drum skin.
Well, Liam and Zora, “Black History Month was founded by Carter G. Woodson, an America historian, journalist, author, and founder of the Association for the Study of African American Life and History. What was once known as Negro History week, manifested to what we know today as Black History Month. During this month, Black history is celebrated and taught all around. For Black people, it’s a month of pride–empowerment.”
As I loaded my tiny humans with this rich history lesson, I realized my responsibility as a mother–a Black mother. I couldn’t rely on their school or the media to enrich my children with Black pride or knowledge. It was up to me. Continuing on with my history lesson, I watched my children’s posture change. I could see Black pride filling their little bodies like seeing an empty glass fill with liquid. In this moment, by babies were being filled–fulfilled.
As our conversation concluded, Liam eventually put his toothbrush away and I perfected Zora’s hair. We left their bathroom where profound discourse resided and I dropped my babies off to school. As Liam shut the car door behind him to head into school I heard him ask his teacher, “Do you know why February is important?”
I drove off with the biggest smile. This is what Black History Month is all about, knowledge, and pride.
Hi, it’s your good sis, Christian! Since birth, I’ve known the power of words and how perfectly crafted sentences have either the power to break or build a person–a situation. Just call me an architect of literature. Beautiful stories live here.
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