“Are you sitting down?” and thus began the wind against my face of a page turn in the book of life. My husband had been given his walking papers. Surprisingly, I didn’t have the reaction I thought and had planned to have if this were to ever come to pass. We know in our community, we treat these things a little different off the back (no jumping off bridges etc.), but we also tend to take a moment, even if we know we have to get right back out there, to revel in the bit of ‘freedom’ these types of things bring forth. We even joke about waving from the plantation gate as that person gets their brown paper bag and high tails it in the wind. This morning after spending several hours contemplating internally and reviewing and planning externally, I came to the realization that this right here was really a case of someone being handed their EMANCIPATION PAPERS and that I am a bit……..jealous.
Now that the concept of slavery and freedom are no longer physical playing pieces, there is this notion that we all are free. Honestly in my 44 years of life, I have known very very few ‘free’ individuals. I used to walk around very proud of this feeling of freedom that I was told I had, I was raised to believe I had, but now (and I can only speak for me and the truth I have discovered for me) all of that is proverbial lip service, because I am very much a slave. How can you be ‘free’ when you are raised under constraint? The basic concept of slavery was to introduce and maintain FEAR, thus my realization that it is me and I am it.. How can that be you ask? You were raised XYZ – your family is ABC. Well you ever saw the movie “The Village” (look it up on your netflix) – the premise was there were people living, working, thriving with a special religion, a special place in Gods eyes and plenty of ‘freedom’ – IN A BUBBLE. The whole world was moving and shaking, right outside their doors and they didn’t even know it. That’s sometimes how I feel in retrospect looking at my life. This is not an accusation, but just a revelation for me. I have always colored in the lines, I have always went more towards yes mam, I have always had my voice come from my fingers moreso than my mouth. I position myself with strength (whether it be good or bad) to plug in and get my energy. It’s taken ALOT of Baby steps to get a firm trot going and at 44 I still crawl…more than I’d like to admit.
My husband is abuzz with light and energy. From the day I met him, he has been a free black man. Maybe it’s his melanin or something but he’s one generation away from the original slaves. He just seems to KNOW freedom of space, place and thought. My yellow ass is like 100 generations deep, lol I was born a slave, lol (the irony of that does not slip past me, lol) He’s the first free man I’ve ever been with. I watch him move about in this world, I listen to his thoughts and ideas and just revel in what that must feel like. There is a saying ‘Do You’ well honey let me tell you – that’s all up and through this man. You know sometimes the worst kind of slavery is when you are shackled up in your mind – what a battle to be able to move your arms and legs, yet …be… paralyzed.
There was absolutely no tension in my household last evening, as a matter of fact, I can’t not acknowledge the look of sheer joy on that man’s face. It was as if was walking around just to bask in how far he could go now. Some of us are just not meant to be caged. As the resident worrier, I’m sure I’ll be on some kinda roller coaster as we navigate these waters which are not necessarily uncharted (shall I bring up the negro I dated who spent our entire relationship while I was busting my ass on my couch playing Mortal Kombat) but that was another ship/another cruise and has no place on this route.
What I know is that I’ve tried very hard not to ever be the ‘master’ that enslaves a man. My role is to be the one who goes out in disguise to the big house making sure that as I make the cornbread, I drop a few slices in my apron for him later. I’m the one who is transporting in my chocha back and forth across the border. Sure there are alot of layers he has to peel through sometimes – but in the end it’s that thing that had us joking and singing songs that pertained to work. You have to be somewhere real special in your relationship to dance on the line we have in the last 12 hours or so, lol
As I stated before, I don’t know a whole bunch of free men. Interestingly enough, I was raised by up to this point the only one I’ve ever known and that’s my Daddy. Then in my adult life much to my fascination, I met another one…My biological Father. Now I’ve married one. You can’t tell me I’m not blessed.
So because having to be a slave was keeping him from the potential that freedom provides – God released him from his shackles. Some of us (myself included) would soon falter and return to the plantation because Freedom is much harder than Slavery – which was the purpose and goal, but some of us……we will shine! Look off in the distance – you see those vibrant colors rising from the East…That’s just my husband…Letting the world know he’s FREE.