by: Minda Harts, Founder, The Memo
I am trying to do a better job of having more of a balance with the media and messages I consume (I mean, one must learn to find balance outside of catching up on Game of Thrones). I found this new five-day devotional by Tauren Wells, called “Known”.
He said two things that resonated with me:
- We often create superficial selves and relegate every relationship to the shallow end of the relational experience.
- The foundation of intimacy is vulnerability.
These two statements might not mean too much to you, but vulnerability has been something I have been struggling with over the last year. The more I speak on matters that concern women of color in the workplace, the more I realize that I must be that much more vulnerable about some of my workplace experiences. Experiences that resulted in my feeling isolated and alone, I now have to bring to the surface. I now have to address those moments in my career when I wanted to run into the bathroom and cry. The hard work and dedication it took to rise to what I thought was closer to the top--just to be overlooked for a promotion because he was a “good guy with a nice wife.”
I am learning that it’s okay to allow myself to connect with other women of color who might be experiencing similar things in their workplaces, so that through our shared experiences we can begin to take on the entire system. I am always the first to say: I don’t have all the answers, and my experience is not the experience of every black woman at work. What I will say, however, is that part of changing a systemic culture is allowing ourselves to be vulnerable and speak out about our ugly truths. No matter how ugly they are, they are our truths. The intimacy that we share through this community may allow others to stand up and say me too.
As we have seen with other growing movements, our speaking up can cause a domino effect. This is the day we allow vulnerability to no longer be a dirty or shameful word. This is the day we acknowledge that the careers of black and brown women matter! In the words of author Kiese Laymon “It’s still that black abundance.”
May we continue speaking our truths and walking in our abundance as women of color--even if they don’t see it yet.