So I just took a walk around Haverford’s campus, and while it was cold and my fingers/toes are a still a little numb, I needed that 45min to a hour to think and be real with myself. My initial reasoning for taking my walk was self care. I rarely decide to walk by myself at 12:30 in the morning but I every thing else was failing me.
First let me say, I needed my walk. Being a black girl at Haverford and dealing with so many different pressures, many of which come from my own high expectations of myself, is hard, exhausting, and draining. I often find myself asking for it all to stop, but life doesn’t work that way. So I allowed myself to keep walking and I found myself contemplating why exactly I am actively choosing to be here at Haverford and what it is I’m dealing with.
While I’m not going to go into details of these pressures, I will say that at the end of my walk I randomly ended up at the steps of Founders. I stood there and immediately began thinking about MarShawn McCarrel, the Black Lives Matter Activist who has just killed himself. I felt sad, pissed, and motivated all in the same breath. This man dedicated his life to the movement. He put his love for people and desires of change before himself. I admire that, but I need people to realize how heavy that actually is. MarShawn McCarrel decided to end his life on the steps of the Ohio Statehouse and told the world, “My demons won today. I’m sorry.”
When I first read that line, I want to admit that I understood. I am not saying that I have done half the work this man has done. But as a young black woman who is consciously thinking about this work, trying to do it at Haverford, and trying to be revolutionary, I just want to say that (and excuse my language Ma and all my family on Facebook) this shit really does affect you.
Now, I did not intend to write this post to say that I can or plan to do what MarShawn McCarrel did. I respect his decision as someone who deals with the same challenges of depression/anxiety (sorry but we need to let the stigma that depression in the black community isn’t real or worthy of discussing go). I am also hurting because we have lost another beautiful black soul and body to institutionalized racism, bureaucracy, and hate. I send my love to his family and loved ones.
Finally, I am planning to have a Vigil and Moment of Silence on the steps of Founders for MarShawn McCarrel and all of the other warriors and activists who have lost their lives in the struggle to find and spread love, equality, and peace for all. I will be emailing my Haverford and Bryn Mawr Communities within the next few days about logistics. I am not planning this as only just a Co-Head for BSL or member of the Diversity Task Force or member of Womxn of Color, ALAS, and every other group I stand with. I am planning this as both of combination of all of those titles and simply as a young black female revolutionary trying to spark a little change.
With that said, thank you for taking the time to read my incredibly long post and I hope to see many faces at this Vigil. AND LOOK OUT FOR MY EMAIL AND FLYERS!
Now, good night my homies.