“Growth is the only guarantee that tomorrow will get better.”John C. Maxwell
Everyday you are presented with the option to either evolve or repeat, the same habits, actions, attitudes, and way of thinking. Everyday you must make a choice. If you really want to see change in your life and in the world, you have to start with yourself. To evolve means to develop gradually or to set free. To repeat means to do (something) again. “We’re not meant to stay the same. Change is good.” All of your life you will experience some type of change but you are in control of deciding whether the type of change is good or bad.
What’s going on in the world right now in regards to race relations is heartbreaking and devastating. It’s a pain that’s plagued our world for far too long. It’s been passed down generationally but its up to you individually to break the cycle and choose everyday to evolve or repeat. It’s a pain that I’ve experienced personally many times but it’s a pain I’m determined to overcome. I remember about two and a half years ago, I was celebrating my oldest daughter second birthday in New Orleans. We had just visited the aquarium and decided to walk down the river walk. My husband was pushing our oldest in the stroller and I was carrying my second born who was a baby at the time in a carrier. As we were walking this random man walks up to us and says, “I see you carrying the little monkey.” We were walking, so it happened so fast, and I instantly felt the hurt, pain, grief, anger and disappointment that has been talked about so long , through racial encounters. I could tell that he intended to bring pain, not only in what he said but in the way he said it and the look on his face. I didn’t respond, I just kept walking because I didn’t want to put my kids in harms way but I felt it.
From that moment I made up in my mind that I would heal from this and I won’t allow this moment to taint the way I see other people because everyone is not the same. But I also won’t allow this moment to dictate and destroy my life and how I see myself and the color of my skin. I make it my intention everyday to tell my kids how beautiful and loved they are, and to teach them how to love, be forgiving and to stand up for themselves and what they believe in. I want them to understand history and see what happened but also understand that change can happen. Look how far we’ve come, although we still have a ways to go.
As history continues to repeat itself time and time again, with the premature ending of black lives taken……Travon Martin, Philando Castile, Sandra Bland, Freddie Gray, Alton Sterling, George Floyd, Ahmaud Arbery and the list goes on. Lives taken over things and issues underserving of death. I often ask myself, “what could have been done differently?” How do we break the cycle? How do we overcome, so that next generations don’t have to repeat the same cycles?
This is such a hard topic to discuss because it’s painful and everyone has an opinion on what they feel is right, but in order to produce change you have to talk about the hard things and ask questions that will help bring about solutions. There is really no “one” solution to the problem and I don’t claim to know all the answers but I really want to share my heart in hopes that it will spark conversations and inspire you and me to take action.
“Evolving involves eliminating.”
When will the cycle of systematic racism and oppression to the black community and culture end? In order to answer that question you have to first see and understand that it does exist. For example, If someone is in pain and they are asked to show you exactly where it hurts, you can’t say, ” I don’t see the pain, so there’s no way you are hurting.” You have to trust and understand that for every action there is a reaction. They are in pain, therefore they are coming to you in hopes of finding a solution for their pain. What’s a different way to respond? How about, “Ok, you are in pain, show me where it hurts and let’s discover ways to heal and make it better.
If we truly want to break the cycle and create real change, it’s starts with us dealing with ourselves and reflecting on where we truly are mentally, spiritually and emotionally. When we truly reflect and deal with the deeper issues in our hearts and minds we are then able to empathize with those that are hurting, find common grounds, operate in love, keep each other accountable and bring about true change. We have to make the decision everyday on whether we will repeat the cycle or grow and evolve.
I’ve been challenging myself to grow spiritually because I recognize that what we are experiencing in our world is very spiritual. We have an enemy who’s purpose is to steal, kill and destroy and he will do it by any means necessary. So I’m challenged to pray more for what going on in our world but also what’s going on in my heart.
Secondly, I’ve been challenging myself to guard my thoughts and what I’m constantly feeding my mind. I need to meditate on the word and also read grow and continue to educate myself so that I can stay focused and keep growing. I’ve also have challenged myself to guard what I watch and what I spend met time doing, so that I can feed on this that will keep me strong mentally and emotionally. I want to keep my mind and spirit hopeful, that change will come.
Lastly, Ive been challenging myself to take time to reflect on exactly what I’m feeling and sort through my emotions. It’s ok to feel sad, angry, hurt and in pain, but what can I do to help overcome those feelings. What changes can I make? How can I make a difference and break the cycle.
I’m praying that a change will come and that justice will be served swiftly in our world. What are some ways you believe we can help bring healing to our world? How can we break the cycle? I would love to make this a conversation and hear from different view points. Comment below. Thanks for taking the time to read, you are appreciated.
4 thoughts on “Evolve Or Repeat”
Beautifully said Shandra!! Love how you tied everything together!!
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Thank you! This was really a hard post to write because the topic is so heavy, but I know that it’s important that we talk about and discuss the hard things so that we can find solutions and break the cycle.
What a powerful post! I’m sorry you had that experience and applaud you for keeping it together because I would have thrown a good left hook, lol! When I was 15 yrs. old, my dad took us to the flea market. My sister -who was about 10, went to a shop and was picking up the items because the prices were on the bottom. This lady kept following us everywhere we went. All of a sudden she starts yelling at us, telling us not to pick up stuff. So I told her, then how are we going to know how much an item is when the price tag’s at the bottom….so we get into this back and forth. We started to leave and she followed us outside and said ‘why don’t you go back to your country’ my first reaction was to turn around and knock her out, lol. Needless to say I was banned from that flea market. 😉
Anyway, you are 100% right that if we don’t evolve, history is only going to repeat itself and I certainly hope there is some serious change so that Mr. Floyd’s death would not have been in vain.
Thank you for reading! Lol, I would have loved to hit him with a left hook. It was so hard to keep things together in that moment, but I’m so glad I did. So sorry for the experience you had, it’s so sad how people can say such hateful things.
It’s so true, the change must really start in our hearts and we have to be careful that we don’t pass down the same hurts to the next generation. It definitely seems like things are really starting to change. People are beginning to listen and I’m optimistic that great things are coming.
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