I’m an author of paranormal, fantasy, and contemporary romance novels. I’m also an educator and professional development specialist with a doctorate in community college leadership. Much of my recent work in the field of education focuses on the adult learner and cultural intelligence. In response to the pandemic and ongoing social injustice, I created online courses for a local Maryland public school system on the topics of cultivating resilience and increasing cultural intelligence. For six months, I read dozens of journals written by educators, mainly middle-class white women, on identity, stress, communication, and emotions. What I learned from these educators is that members of privileged groups grapple with a myriad of psychological and emotional life situations.
Moreover, many of the educators lack effective coping and resilience strategies. Intellectually, I already knew that privilege and entitlement are not barriers to life’s trials and hardships. However, reading people’s stories and struggles is a different level of knowledge. The experience brought into perspective the depth of resilience required to face systemic oppression--specifically racism and sexism. I thought about how even more critical resilience becomes for members of marginalized groups and the vital role self-care can play in cultivating their resilience. With this understanding, combined with health, education, and income statistics on the state of Black America, I wrote two nonfiction works—The Color of My Resilience: A Guided Self-Care Journal for Black Men and The Color of My Resilience: A Guided Self-Care Journal for Black Women.
These journals are both timely and needed. With the help of social media and the Black Lives Matter Movement, the global community is more aware and less tolerant of racism, particularly police violence against people of color. But police shootings of Black people still occur, as do everyday microaggressions, which means Black women, like others, must find healthy and effective means of coping. Building their resilience through self-care is one method of addressing this need.