I love you. I feel your love. For clarity, as well as solace, I turn to the words of the sage Lao Tzu, who gave the insight, “Being deeply loved by someone gives you strength, while loving someone deeply gives you courage.”
Your love gives me strength, and because I love you deeply, I am given courage. Thank you.
David Brooks wrote an op-ed column in the New York Times at the end of June outlining the challenges we are facing titled “America Is Facing 5 Epic Crises at Once.” In his words, “There are five gigantic changes happening in America right now. The first is that we are losing the fight against Covid-19. Our behavior doesn’t have anything to do with the reality around us. We just got tired so we’re giving up.
“Second, all Americans, but especially white Americans, are undergoing a rapid education on the burdens African-Americans carry every day.”
Brooks goes on to discuss the other three major crises, one being the reality that we could be on the verge of a prolonged economic depression. Poignantly, he reminds us, “This is our lives’ most important moment.”
Truly, I repeat, this is our lives’ most important moment.
In an earlier column, pre-Covid-19 and before all the challenges and changes we are facing now, Brooks wrote that we have reached a pivot point. Referring back to 1945, he noted that Americans had endured 16 years of hardship beginning with the Great Depression and ending at the end of World War II.
“What’s lost is the more balanced view, that we are splendidly endowed but also broken. And without that view, the whole logic of character-building falls apart.”
As we’re all living in the evolving, unknown stages of the worst health crisis the world has known in over a century, George Floyd’s killing hit such a powerful nerve that has awakened us to our core. We are experiencing a huge crisis, and it is hitting all at once. This is the backdrop for us to move forward to get this moment right.
We have to take personal responsibility for our own behavior as we admit our wrongdoings in the past that collectively have added to the problem of racial injustice. As we muster up all our inner resources and commit ourselves to become part of the solution, we have to give ourselves some grace as we address our deep pain and turmoil.
I am a human being. The whole of my life is who I am at my core. I am not a writer. I am someone who chooses to write because I feel I can best contribute, connect and participate with you in this way. My words will not be perfect. I’m struggling to best express what’s most urgently pressing on my mind and in my heart. I feel my awkwardness is an outward sign of my growing pains. Once we stretch ourselves to a deeper, more profound realization of just how far we’ve come in a little more than a month, think how exhilarating it will be to recognize that we will continue to evolve through the rest of our lives.