Recommitment in the Evening of 2021

Today’s post was originally going to be about my part in the “great white awakening” of 2020. Then, pretty much by chance, I had a conversation last week about shifting our gaze from 2020 to recommitting and moving forward. I’m taking that conversation as a sign to look at how I will focus forward as we move towards 2022, rather than looking back at last year. I hope that some of what I have to say resonates with you.

When I think about what brings me back to this work every day, a few words come to mind. “Community” and “collective” are two of them. Understanding that I have an obligation to do this work for the physical, mental and spiritual wellbeing of others, especially BI+PoC, is key; on the other hand, I have a strong community of co-conspirators to help me when I’m struggling and to hold me accountable with love. I couldn’t agree more with Myisha T. Hill’s wisdom that we must be in community to do this work. It’s the support and the reminder I need to do my own little recommitment every day.

A line of people facing away from the viewer and wearing jackets. They are of medium skin tone and have their arms around each other to form a chain.

If I had to sum up in one phrase what the work has looked like for me in 2021, I would say “niching down”. I have learned to be far more mindful of the fact that when I push myself to consume and learn everything all at once, it inevitably leads to burnout and ghosting. I’ve thought about where I most pressingly need to grow in this work and focused my energy there. This has led to much more spaciousness within me that I can put to use in the internal, spiritual and ancestral work needed for collective liberation.

As the days grow shorter (and colder- sweater season has officially started!), I am beginning to look at how my work can evolve into the new year. Going into 2022, I want to continue my self-awareness and consideration for where I am spending my energy. I’d like to learn more about how to bring liberatory practice into my day-to-day life and relationships. I would also like to get stuck into the ancestral work; I have been able to learn a lot about this over the past year, mainly from Rachel Ricketts’ book Do Better, but I still have a long way to go to put it into practice.

Figures representing a mother, father, son and daughter stood on orange ground against a blue sky. Below the ground, roots spread from their feet.

CYP founder Myisha T. Hill talks about composting what we no longer need so that it can grow into something new. I would like to compost my self-doubt and self-hatred. Another thing I have learnt this year, especially from Myisha, is how our collective freedom is tied together; if I am oppressing myself, I am inherently oppressing others. I want to be able to love myself unconditionally, not just on the rare occasion when I decide I am good enough. That way, I can better show up for the collective.

Three saplings being held on a wooden tray by light-skinned hands. The saplings are in pots made out of soil.

I am so grateful for all that 2021 has offered me so far. I am especially thankful to Myisha T. Hill, Check Your Privilege and the community in the Co-Conspirators’ Lounge for completely turning my life around and teaching me so much about liberation, community and myself. I can’t wait to see what I learn in the future.

What about you? What have you learned in the work this year? What do you want to compost, and what do you want to grow? Who are the most important figures in your journey, and how are you giving back to them?

I hope you got something from this post! If you did, please consider donating to CYP or joining the Lounge. Thank you for taking the time to read my second offering; I’ll see you soon!

Ash 🙂