I was meeting with a Shining Light father in the last few days. His son who has crossed over was his only son. When he looks at other fathers, he sometimes feels jealous that they still have their sons. Then, he feels guilty for feeling jealous. We’ve all been there. Whether it’s our only child or one of a dozen, they’re all irreplaceable. They’re all one of a kind. Seeing others with their kids still running around doing the things kids do, with their promise for a bright future can sting.

Then, he went on to say something that caused me to do a double take and led to an insight that I want to share with you. He said that he had seen his son as his legacy. Not only did he “lose” a son, but he also lost his legacy. Coincidentally, in the coaching course I’m taking, the instructor just talked about the four phases of life, the last being the legacy stage. We all want to leave an imprint on the world. Some consciously want this, some subconsciously. But, we seek significance, and we seek permanence. Once we realize we’re not going to be here forever, a realization which doesn’t hit many of until our thirties or forties, we turn our attention to building a legacy. What can we do that will last beyond our mortal bodies? If we have children, we often try to make them our legacy. I tried to talk the girls into taking over Treasured Locks when I reached my old age. They both flatly rejected me, each choosing to make their way in the world.

Our kids can be our legacies, but there are many other ways to leave a legacy. We can build a business. We can build a building. We can start a scholarship fund. These are different traditional ways to think of legacies. But, there is a more important legacy we can leave. That is how we impact other people. This type of legacy may be an invisible legacy, but it’s a legacy none-the-less. I’d like to believe that some of my words have impacted others in a way that has changed their lives. I want to think that they have in turn influenced others. I think of people like Mark Ireland, the co-founder of Helping Parents Heal, who took the time to correspond with me after someone told me to email him out of the blue. Mark sent copies of his books to me and introduced me to Helping Parents Heal. I think of the work of Dr. Gary Schwartz who wrote the first book on mediumship I ever read. That was the book that set me on the path to knowing the afterlife is real. Who knew that almost twenty years later I would meet Gary and be working with him? Every person I touch from here on is part of each of the legacies of Mark, Gary, and others. Our kids can pass before us. Buildings will crumble. Businesses fail. But, the things we do in life that touch other people echo throughout eternity living long after this mortal body has turned to dust.

It’s not supposed to be like this. We expect our kids to mourn us. I’ve prepared myself for mourning my parents. Kayla and Shayna were supposed to be the ones to have to deal with my departure. I was old when they were born. The thought of outliving them never crossed my mind. They were supposed to be my legacies. But, things turned upside down. As it turns out, I am Shayna’s legacy. This is what struck me as that father’s words sank into my soul. Her too-short fifteen years in my life has had an impact beyond what I could have ever dreamed it would have. And, it’s because of her premature passing that I dedicate every single day now to making her proud by making sure her legacy is what it was intended to be.

Today I meet a friend for brunch. On this post-material (nod to Gary Schwartz) Shayna journey, Bill has been there every step. He led Shayna’s memorial service and he and I have taken long walks regularly where he’s helped me process this. I’ve said things to Bill I wouldn’t say to many other people. As a former pastor and current divorce counselor, he’s got the active listening skills and techniques to make me feel comfortable sharing with him.

As I’ve gone along the journey, he’s been looking for signs of progress. I can sense that, as a counselor, he wants to see me making progress. I don’t know about progress. In those first several days, weeks, and months progress seemed impossible. It wasn’t even something to be sought. All I wanted to do was to be with Shayna. I just wanted the pain to end. If someone mentioned a future beyond tomorrow, it was beyond my comprehension. I didn’t want to think about the immediate future- only the long term future when I would finally leave this realm.

It’s interesting checking in with Bill. It’s typically once or twice a month that we’ll get together. During this entire time, the business has been a struggle. As my financial planner, Bill has intimate knowledge of my finances. He always asks about the business as well as about my mental and emotional state and as someone who cannot tolerate people who do nothing but complain, I get tired of hearing myself report the same thing week after week, into months, and years. I tell him I’m working on patience. But, I have to report the truth. If you don’t want to hear it, don’t ask. But, Bill has been patient listening to me say that not much has changed.

Today, at brunch, Bill asks the same questions. There have been some changes recently. Expenses are way down as I’ve stopped pouring money into things that weren’t working. Advertising is working since trying a new scheme with Google ads. The part-time job with Thomas helps. Tywana has a full-time job. The distribution deal is back in the realm of possibility. And, there’s more. Bill is excited for me saying this is the most positive he has heard me. I guess that’s true. But, I’m just reporting the facts.

Then, he says something to me he has said before. I can’t recall his exact phrasing. But, it’s part of his Divorce and Beyond ministry lexicon. The goal is to move people past the point where the divorce is no longer “life-defining”. He’s been counseling me using his divorce counseling skills. As he’s phrasing what he wants to say very carefully, I’m thinking about how I’m going to respond. I greatly appreciate all that he’s done and is doing for me. But, I’ve got to correct him on this point. Shayna’s passing is life-defining for me. It always will be. It can be no other way, and I wouldn’t have it any other way. He clarifies. “What I mean is no longer defining your life as before Shayna passed and after Shayna passed.” I take this to mean like a B.C. / A.D. thing. Man, I want to agree with you Bill. But, no.

Yes, my life is split into two halves (well not halves exactly). I label my blog posts with the number of days it’s been since Shayna’s passing. I’m counting up the days until we are reunited. He asks me if I reflect on how things have changed on milestone dates since Shayna’s passing, her birthday, her angel date, etc. When you’re divorced, I guess you do that, for a while. At this point, with my divorce over three decades in the rearview mirror, I struggle to remember our anniversary date. I don’t recall Mary’s birthday. I think of her and it a couple of times a year, only when something triggers it. I tell Bill I think of Shayna every single day. My day starts and ends with her on my mind, and she’s on my mind all during the day. Shayna motivates most of what I do now. It’s Sunday morning, and I’m sitting here making an entry into the blog named after her. After this, I’ll work on the life-coaching class I’m taking that I would not be taking had I not been placed on this path by her passing. I think I can safely say there will never be an event in my life that is more life-defining than Shayna’s passing. There certainly has not been.

Then, Bill says that what he means is he sees me moving on. The phrase moving on is like nails on a chalkboard to me. Technically, I don’t know that there is any difference between the two, but for me when I picture moving on, I see leaving Shayna in the past. To move on means to leave behind. I will never move on. I’ve moved on from my divorce. It’s in my past. I’ve taken lessons from it. I rarely think about it. And I certainly don’t want to reflect on it daily. I explain to Bill what he sees is me moving forward. Moving forward is very different from moving on. I carry Shayna with me as I move forward. While I’ve always looked forward to my reunion with Shayna, I am seeing that some good can happen between now and then as she is still with me, inspiring me, pushing me. She connects with me through signs, synchronicities, drop-ins with mediums, and in dreams. I’m looking forward to seeing what we can accomplish together, and I see so many ways the Universe is conspiring to make that happen.

I think the change Bill sees in me is immediately after Shayna passed all I could think about was the past. All of my happiness was in the past. I wanted to go back to the past. I either wanted to clock to fast forward to the end or turn back to before she left. Anything to be out of the present. What I’ve come to is a place where I feel Shayna still with me and where I am focused on where we are going.

With Shining Lights Parents, language can be a trigger that can send us spiraling. Language matters. “Committed suicide” is a phrase that has connotations of suicide being a crime. We commit murder, we commit a bank robbery. We search for new language that is more sensitive and honors the person who has passed and the family. Completed suicide is a phrase that has less judgemental implications.

hayna’s passing will always be a life-defining event for me, as we planned it. It’s supposed to be. I want it to be. If a day goes by and I don’t think of Shayna, something has gone very wrong. It means dementia has set in. I will never move on. I will move forward, together with Shayna. I will continue moving toward Shayna and the completion of my journey. And with that, Day 1340 is underway. It’s time for me to study my life coaching course.

I have a tendency to minimize the good things and emphasize the bad. Losses I remember. Victories, I take in stride. I am turning that around. It’s mid-February, we are already a month and a half in. I am acknowledging several beginnings this year. Tywana’s got a new job. Kayla will be graduating in a few weeks. My car loan is paid off in June. I am educating myself in preparation for some new business ventures.

Last year, I decided I was going to publish a book. I gathered up some materials that I had written for Treasured Locks and put them into a Kindle book. I researched how to create and publish on the Kindle platform and I put it out there. A couple of days ago, Amazon sent my 1099 for the royalties. It was $16.32.

I could look at this and say $16.32 won’t even buy me a meal out. When I think about the hours I put into putting the book together, making the cover, learning the Amazon platform, it comes out to pennies an hour. Or, I could look at this and say “I am a published author.” I have my first book out and I’ve gotten paid. This is a stepping stone to my next book and my next book. The fact that I made any royalties at all on a book I spent absolutely nothing to promote, swimming in the sea of what seems to be billions of books on Amazon, is pretty cool.

The goal for this year is to publish at least one more book. And, then another, and another.

I’ve been getting more signs and synchonicities than, I can keep up with. I try to journal the big ones. Today, after Tywana had done the dishes and left the house, I was doing something in the kitchen near the sink. At the bottom of the sink was a dime. In the picture, you can see the dishwater had just drained out.

My inclination is to try to find a logical, physical answer first. Finding a dime in the washing machine or the dryer is common. We leave them in our pockets, they end up in the machine, no great mystery. We typically don’t handle money around the sink though and dimes don’t fly through the air. I have no natural, physical explanation for why I found this dime there. A few weeks ago, after Tywana had gone down to her office, I was coming down the stairs and there was a dime on the landing. When Shayna passed, I heard about people finding pennies. Pennies are too common. I asked for dimes. And, we get dimes. I’ll never forget the first one. Are these apports?I report, you decide.

Tywana’s alarm goes off. I turn to her and say “Wakey, wakey, eggs & bakey.” Why I do this, I have no idea. It’s something I would say to the girls every once in a while. I hardly ever say it to Tywana. She’s not exactly a morning people and I know my “I’m ready to get this day started.” attitude drives her nuts.

On the way to meet my friend for brunch, I note the time is 11:11. We’re meeting at 11:15. I screenshot it on my phone.

When my meal is brought, out, I reach for my silverware and there’s one of those bands around it that holds the napkin and silverware together. Printed on the band is the image above.

I’m in a mentoring/coaching group to help me develop my business(es). It’s a peer group led by a coach. As part of the group, we each pitch our business to the group to hone our pitch and to get feedback on our offerings. Today, it’s Anne Marie’s turn and she’s talking about her service of helping people connect to their Akashic Business Council, a group of spiritual advisors we each have. I’ve never heard of the Akashic Business Council. So, I’m intrigued.

Cue tonight’s dream. In my dream, I am meeting with business advisors/consultants. They keep asking me the same question over and over. It’s something to do with an email that I had sent out. They’re asking me if I included an element as a variable or as a constant. I keep telling them I can’t remember. I’ll have to check when we get out of the meeting. They continue to give me nonsensical advice. I end up getting so frustrated I tell them that if they don’t move on or start making sense, I’m going to have to fire them.

That’s when I realize they are Michael Scott and Dwight Schrute from the TV show The Office.

I sure hope this wasn’t my Business Council. A buncha clowns.

p.s.- Anne Marie tells me it’s not uncommon to get that connected right away and maybe instead of them being clowns they are trying to get me to look at things from a different perspective.

It was called positive thinking decades ago. Now it’s called visualization or manifestation. Many teach that we can manifest whatever we want in our lives, wealth, health, fame, it’s all limitless. Life is but a dream and if we can become lucid in the dream, we set. Oprah has said it for years. It’s worked for her. It could work for any of us. We can all be Oprah, if we just believe.

Who wouldn’t want to believe in us living in a magical world where thinking the right thoughts makes it all easy? Who wouldn’t want life to be an endless series of accomplishments? I don’t want setbacks. I don’t want challenges. I want life on my terms. If manifestation works, teach me how to do it.

I look around. All around me people are facing challenges. As I type this, I know three people going through life-threatening challenges. Did they not think the right things? I watched a documentary a few days ago “Heal.” A friend in one of my spiritual communities recommended it. It’s about how we can heal ourselves, and there are examples of some miraculous healings. I couldn’t help but notice that one of the women featured in the film was a vegan, mostly raw, organic yoga freak. Yet, she got stage 4 cancer. Through various healing modalities (maybe) she beat the disease. But, if she was so careful with her temple before and so spiritual, why did she get sick in the first place? I think of Anita Moorjani who says it was her fear of getting sick, her obsession with perfect health that caused her cancer. What are we to do to ensure health and wealth?

The last several years have been full of challenges for me. Every time the phone rings, I wonder what will go wrong next. When Tywana yells my name from the other end of the house, my PTSD kicks in. I’m immediately back to June 24, 2015 when she yelled at me from Shayna’s room. The world was OK one second, the next second everything had changed forever. When Kayla texts, I hold my breath until I hear “I’m OK”. These life-changing moments, these times when life turns on a dime, why do they seem to be “negative”? The phone doesn’t ring in the middle of the night with an announcement that you’ve won the lottery. Things don’t fix themselves. The washing machine breaks. The mechanic calls and says the car needs a new transmission. Entropy seems to reign.

I’ve been working on affirmations, positive thinking, manifestation all of that stuff. My friend who is trying to help me will tell me things like this blog post will block the flow. If I don’t manifest these things, it’s my fault. I just didn’t believe enough. Just believe more and it’ll all be unicorns and lollipops.

I’m running in a thousand different directions right now and I’m mentally exhausted. I’ve got to focus. Just yesterday, I was writing something to my business coach telling him that I’m de-emphasizing Treasured Locks. Tywana’s got a full time job. I’m working a couple of part-time jobs. Maybe Treasured Locks will fade into the sunset. I put thousands of dollars into it last year that didn’t move the needle at all. It’s been a grind for at least five years. So, instead of pushing on that, I’m pushing on other things. Then, I opened an email about an opportunity for Treasured Locks I’ve been pursuing for nearly a year. I have emailed, made calls, sent samples, filled out paper work, filled out paper work again, sent samples again, created presentations, and sent more emails pursuing this opportunity. About four months ago I gave up and emailed them thanking them for their consideration but saying I couldn’t jump through any more hoops. They said maybe we could work together without doing all the things they had previously demanded. (In sales, this is called the “take away” close, but that wasn’t my intention.)

The emailed I opened yesterday said we are in the final stages of consideration and that I could get an affirmative answer. They just need to approve the final paperwork I submitted and look over the proposal I put together a couple of weeks ago. As I type this, I’m listening to a new artist for me. I’ve never heard the album before and the song that is on at this moment is “(Don’t Get Your) Hopes Up.” I hope that’s not a sign. I’m not taking it as a sign.

So, what do I do at this moment? I’d like to manifest this deal. It could be the biggest thing to happen to our company in the seventeen years of its existence. I’ve hardly dared dream of what it could mean. Only in the last couple of weeks have I began to visualize how it could change things for the better.

I’ve asked my friends to visualize for me. As the man said to Jesus “I believe, help my unbelief.” I’ve got faith the size of a mustard seed. I’m holding onto a sliver of hope. As my friend Irene closes her podcast “To be continued”.

It’s a fair question to ask why mediums charge when they’re serving Spirit. Shouldn’t spiritual work be free? Hint: if you attend church, ask your pastor.

The mediums I’m aware of charge anywhere from $0-1,600 an hour. Maybe some charge more. I do work for a guy who charges $800-$1,275 per hour depending on whether you want to wait a year or only a few months to see him. Why? Because there is only one of him and he’s in demand worldwide. He has a television program, he does readings for Hollywood stars. He has to travel. He has to employ staff. He is bi-coastal with homes in New York and Los Angeles. Someone has to pay for all of that overhead. And he has to travel because it’s what people want. He simply could not afford to do readings for $150 an hour even if he worked 24 hours a day.

If a person cannot afford a particular medium, It’s unfair to blame the medium. I often hear people say “I can’t afford this person. It’s not fair.” I’ve rarely heard anyone say that about a plumber, or an electrician, or even a physician. In this world, we all need money. Unless a medium is independently wealthy, if they’re going to spend all day doing readings, they will have to charge money for it. Time spent doing readings is time not spent earning money in other ways. It’s unrealistic to expect people doing readings full time to not charge.

We all have to make decisions on what we can afford and not afford. Of course, some of us can’t afford even $10, or $20 and we still might really need that connection. If you feel like you really need a reading and absolutely cannot afford anything, it’s very likely you can find someone who will be willing and able to give it to you. Keep seeking. Keep in mind you do not necessarily have to go to a professional medium. I’ve had Shayna come through other parents, and through acquaintances I’ve met on Facebook. Visit a spiritualist church. Our local spiritualist church gives platform readings every Sunday. Once a month, you can get a reading for $10 from one of the congregation members.

One of the side effects of my journey over the last 3-1/2 years is I have gotten to know many professional mediums. I’ve become friends with a few. They all are in this to serve. They all give back in various ways- free readings, discounted readings, speaking to groups for free, offering tickets to their events, and many more. Because of various circumstances in terms of wealth they may have had before, working spouses, demands on their time, how they share their gifts (if they travel or not), they charge rates that vary greatly.

Alan Hugenot, a medium who has been tested and shown to be the real deal, an NDE survivor, Naval architect, author, and professor, wrote a great article about why he had to start charging for readings even after saying he never would. Alan has also written two books that I recommend. People kept asking him for readings. He finally gave in and started giving public readings. But, he has to charge. He explains why in a paragraph I have taken from his article:

Just that one week a year costs me over $5,000, and it is not a vacation… So, just to pay for that trip uses up the income from the first 40 mediumship clients. Then I am also taking time away from my career as a Naval Architect to travel to England, losing another $6,640 which uses up the income from an additional 53 mediumship clients. Finally, each of those 93 half hour clients takes away at least an hour of my time from my career as a Naval Architect, which is another $7,719 of lost income, which uses up the fees from yet an additional 62 readings. So, I will finally begin to “break even” (be where I was if I simply worked as a Naval Architect and forgot about mediumship) after the first 155 paid readings, which requires me to book and do three readings a week all year long, before I make the first nickel as a medium. So “free readings” aren’t at all free.

Alan Hugenot-

Tywana and I watched Standoff with Laurence Fishburne last night. I’m a huge fan of Laurence. In this movie though, he plays the role of the villain, and one of the worst villains ever. He’s a contract killer after a little girl who witnessed one of his murders. A man that the girl has never met before takes on the responsibility of protecting the girl from Laurence’s character, thus the standoff.

Every time I see a movie with little girls it reminds me of my girls. I deeply identified with the role of the guy playing her protector. At one point in the movie, this is just hours after they had met, she gives him a big bear hug and I remembered what those were like.

Maybe that’s the trigger for the dream I had. Tywana and I were working in a nursery taking care of babies from infants up until about the age of two. Tywana works the church nursery once a month. In fact, today is her day to work in the nursery. Tywana kept giving the wrong children back to parents. She would see a parent come to pick up a child, just grab a child and hand it to the parent without matching the parent to the child. Why the parents didn’t realize they had the wrong kids, I do not know. At one point in the dream, a little girl around the age of two, hugged me around my neck and said “I love you.”

We got the kids all sorted out and it was time to go. We were in a huge building and I guess were parked on the other side. It was a nice day out so we took the nearest exit and walked around the building. As we walked, we talked about finances, what we had been through, and how things were slowly getting better. People were passing in all directions. Just then, I spotted Shayna walking with another little girl going into the building. Their path took them across our path. Shayna was about eight or nine years old. Her hair was in ponytails the way Tywana used to style it. She had on a blue denim dress. I know it had a scoop neck because, as she passed us, I saw from behind she had her name tattooed vertically on her back.

I turned to Tywana and I said “There’s Shayna. This is the first time we’ve seen her together.” I knew were in a dream and Shayna was “dead.” As she passed Shayna looked at us, smile and said two words. “Thanks again.” And the dream ended.

I stay away from political topics on this blog even though I find it very difficult, to separate politics from faith from spirituality. For me, your faith or spirituality should have sway over your politics. And, politics are how we collectively exercise our values. Given that disclaimer, this post isn’t exactly political. But, it’s a sensitive subject- race. In honor of Black history month, I created a series of memes that I post on Treasured Locks and on my personal Facebook page. Often people ask why we need Black history month. When I see the response to my memes, I’m reminded of why we do. I’ve been sharing them on my personal Facebook page and many of my friends have responded positively. I’m taking a leap by making this post. I wrote it yesterday and have been contemplating whether I should post it or not. This morning, I was going over it in my head and I heard Shayna tell me I need to publish it. Just then, one of the Shayna Six, her group of friends, who I haven’t seen in about a year, came out of her house going for a run. Shayna spent a lot of time educating these girls on race in America. That was my sign.

Saturday night Tywana and I were at a friend’s house. We were sitting around the kitchen table making having homemade pizza and a few beverages. We’ve been friends with these people for a very long time. But, we are divided politically, we know it, and we tend to avoid talking about politics. Race is always the elephant in the room. They are all of European descent. I am about 33% of European descent. None of my friends know that. In America, if you’re Black, you’re “just Black”.

They were talking about their trips to Europe, visiting their countries of origin, talking about whether they are German, or Italian, or Irish. How they thought they were Italian but, it turns out they’re German (It was like a 23 and Me ad). Typically, when my caucasian friends get into these conversations, I just sit quietly until the conversation is over. I’ve got nothing to say. As an African-American, I don’t know my country of origin. Being of certain skin color and being descended from slaves, I presume somewhere on the continent of Africa. People in American tend to think of Africa as a country. Africa is three times the land mass of the United States or Europe. So, when you say you’re from Africa, you’re not being very specific. It’s interesting the pride they’ll take in their background. When I was younger, I wondered why I didn’t have any interest in this. Our family didn’t tell stories about where we came from. We didn’t have an original language that we knew of from our ancestors who first arrived here.

It wasn’t until I was a teenager and I saw the mini-series Roots that I realized what African-Americans had been robbed of. The reason our families don’t tell stories of the old countries or have traditions, or language, or even religions, is all of that was robbed from our ancestors. They were forced to speak the language of their masters and forbidden to speak in their native tongues. They were forced to worship the god of their captors. I use lower case for god in this instance because this is not the tru God. God didn’t design one race to be dominated by the other. God would never tell people to remain in slavery. This was a god of their making who excused their inhuman behavior. The captives were given this new religion they were told would save them from the fiery pits of hell. Ironic, for people who thought they were sub-human to think they had souls to save. The real motivation for giving them this religion was to keep them docile. They were taught this religion to impose upon them the natural order “Slaves obey your masters”. They were raped, separated from their families, beaten, and murdered with impunity. Any pride they had from their native lands, culture, religions, traditions, tongues was thoroughly destroyed.

We then ventured into the opioid epidemic. Tywana and I have often made the observation that now that the epidemic has hit the “burbs”, the socioeconomic middle class, and frankly white people, it’s an “epidemic”. When Black people were smoking crack a few decades ago, they were criminals. They were derided as “crack heads”. Tougher laws were the answer. Declare them criminals and lock them up. If they won’t stop smoking crack, keep them in prison until they do. No one cared about why they might be tempted to smoke crack. No one asked what they were trying to escape from. They were criminals, plain and simple. Now, however, the opioid epidemic is hitting close to home. It’s coming to “good neighborhoods”. We were discussing a book my wife is reading with her book club. As the book my wife is reading likes to point out, the Mexicans are targeting the white kids. The book even claims the Mexicans are scared of Black kids. So, they’re not targeting them. Suddenly, it’s a problem because white people are victims. The book goes so far to say that the white kids don’t even have to go to the “bad neighborhoods” to get the drugs. The drugs are being delivered to them right there in suburbia.

The middle class is succumbing. They need treatment. We need walls to protect us from these bad Mexicans who are corrupting us. It hurts to hear that a drug problem that impacted people who looked like you was a criminal problem and needed to be solved by locking up the criminals doing drugs; but, a drug problem that impacts white people is an epidemic. It’s another reminder of the fact that people who look like me are worth less. (Full disclosure: I’ve never known anyone who smoked crack. I grew up in a middle-class neighborhood. I’ve never lived in “the hood”. But, people who look like me do). Tywana and I came home and just shook our heads. I was trying to make the point it’s all the same- crack, opioids, heroin. People in pain will seek escape. We need to figure out why we’re vulnerable to crack and opioids. We need to stop trying to stop the supply and stop the demand. All people, regardless of skin color, or drug of choice, deserve to be treated with dignity when they have a problem. No one is worth more or less consideration when it comes to being a victim.

This morning, when I was on my walk, I began thinking about the meme I’ve created to be the featured image of this post. I felt the pain of my ancestors. Instead of thinking about them as “slaves”, I tried to picture them in their homelands, speaking their native languages, practicing their religions, raising their families, then having all of that ripped away. For maybe the first time in my life I sat with that, and I wept. It’s unimaginable what was taken from them and the ripples continue to spiral out through time, impacting me right here, 400 years later. Today, a Black life in America is still worth less than a white life. The chasm created between us and our ancestors can never be filled. We and our children, will continue to feel this loss.

This is some heavy shit. That’s why usually when my European friends are carrying on about their ancestry, I sit quietly, politely, and let them finish. Every once in a while, as Tywana and I did the other night, I might remind them that I’m “just Black”. You see, even though I’m about a third European, the “one drop rule” applies in America. If you have even one “Black” ancestor, you’re just Black. It’s why Obama is “Black”. It’s why Tiger Woods is “Black”. We reminded them that we’re “just Black”. We educated them on the one drop rule. But, we left it there. We didn’t go into how much our people were robbed of and how conversations about visiting our “home countries” and learning about our ancestors are things we can’t relate to because they are things we can never do. Since it’s Black history month, I thought you might indulge me a bit.