YOU’RE MAD, AND IT’S OKAY/DEALING WITH RACIAL TRAUMA
We go to sleep trying to hope for the best for the next day. We say that nothing could possibly go wrong the next day. However, that wasn’t the case for me on Tuesday. I woke up at was bombarded with status updates, tweets, and text messages about the Terrence Crutcher case. He was shot by the same people whom he was asking for help from; the police.
Not even 12 hours later, I opened back up my social media and seen that another Black man, Eric Lamont Scott, had also suffered the same fate. But in this case, they had mistaken the book he was reading for a weapon. Not too long after, the Black community in Charlotte, North Carolina had finally had enough and their protest turned violent.
That night I was at work on my social media. I was chatting with other organizers and fellow Black people, I was watching live streams that I found on Twitter of the Charlotte protest, and I was updating my timelines on the social media quad (Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, & SnapChat) with whatever news and videos I could find so that I was bringing awareness to what was happening.
Usually, I’m very strong and resilient in situations like this. I thought I was immune to seeing the death of my people, because it’s something I felt like I seen one too many times. And while it’s true when they say “once you’ve seen one video, you’ve seen them all,” you feel the exact same way you felt when you’ve seen the first one. The agonizing feeling of pain that shoots from your head down your spine only intensifies with each video you fall witness to.
Seeing these videos and articles were only bearable (barely), until I started receiving ignorant remarks from White racist in my Twitter mentions. The statements were unbelievable. The words “nigger” and “monkey” came across countless times. I couldn’t believe it. Again, I’ve fell victim to these types of tweets before, but besides the fact that everything was happening so fast, I just couldn’t understand that even after getting the facts, people still could say that these men were responsible for their own deaths. It was disgusting. I got sick to my stomach and couldn’t even get to sleep until 3:30 AM even though I had to be up for class at 8 AM. When I got to sleep, I was restless. I didn’t know what was going on. But I was figuring it out.
@TheRasheedDavis this is so stupid,don’t y’all have jobs an families to look after? Oh wait, that’s what responsible Americans do..not y’all
— Lewis Baker (@lewisbaker626) September 21, 2016
I have a history of depression, and I suffer from bipolar disorder. They were both setting in. The emotional and mental trauma of it all were setting in, and my sanity was finally starting to crack, so I had to get back my mind, body, & soul in check before I completely checked out. I had to detox. So I stayed off social media for a day, and surrounded myself with positive things and people. My remedy worked almost instantly, and I felt way better than the head-space I was in two days prior.
I want to share some ways to deal with the trauma that can come from the race-related issues that can not only cause emotional and mental distress, but also physical. And what most people don’t know, is that these can be permanent and can effect you forever.
To release, disconnect, and detox, you should: