Through social media I discovered Ei Jane - a dope artist, sound creator, image maker, and human. She has shared publicly this ALIVE photo background and encouraged other black women to use it and post our presence online. This is such a beautiful, simple but powerful, and accessible reminder that We are still here. I am still here.
I've been so grateful over the past several months for the virtual community of support and love and encouragement that arose through social media in response to all of the publicized violence and aggression towards others who share my complexion. I'm not stretching the truth by any means when I say that there were days when the words and images others posted gave me strength to get out of bed and be hopeful. There are numerous people out there I follow that don't even know me, have never met me, or interacted with me at all, yet they have touched my life just by sharing words of encouragement at moments when encouragement was needed on a mass scale. For any other brown girls or boys out there who feel isolated in a rural community, or silenced in an academic institution, or undervalued in your position, or misunderstood by your peers, let's support each other in this virtual world. Reach out, search for reflections of yourself online if you can't find them in your immediate physical world. Share each others' words. Make yourself visible. Appreciate others who do the same. It can matter.