Farewell 2020 & Everything You Need to Know About Kwanzaa 

Peace & Greetings! 

I wanted to ask you a favor, but I will get to that later. First and foremost, I am sitting down to write because I did not want to let 2020 get away from here without me reaching out to you. I want you to know that I appreciate your love and support. Thank you for reading my blog and thanks for giving positive feedback. I love writing this blog whenever I get around to it. However, for quite some time I have been feeling like these sporadic posts here and there just won’t do. So I have decided that beginning today, December 25, 2020, going forward, I will upload a blog post every Friday. Writing these blog posts represent Kuumba, which means creativity in the East African language of Swahili. Kuumba is the 6thPrinciple of Kwanzaa, (which for those of you who may not be familiar, is a Pan African cultural holiday that takes place each year between December 26th and January 1st.) So here we go. 

As 2020 comes to a close, I wanted to tell you about my creative pursuits during this era of the COVID-19 pandemic. Mainly I have been using the time in isolation to do a lot of reading, a lot of writing and a lot of walking. And while I am out walking, I have been taking a lot of landscape and nature photographs. These daily activities I have welcomed may not sound earthshattering, but this forced quarantine has made a huge difference in the quality of my life. For me, this has been a time to reflect and reset. I am naturally an introvert, so I welcome the solitude. Plus I am a creative, so I welcome this space to create. These past 8 or 9 months or so have been the first time in my adult life that I have had this kind of leeway to organize my days organically around my own biorhythms, passions, goals and objectives. For once, I am not obligated to constantly rip and run all over the place each and every day. So even with all the sadness around COVID-19 and all the social unrest, I do have a lot to be grateful for. I recognize that I am blessed and highly favored. I do not take any of these good fortunes for granted.

But keeping it real, I also wanted to take the time to write a little bit about diversity and equity because of this unparalleled year we have had. I want to take a moment and acknowledge how difficult the reality of racism is, how unfair and demonic it is that our society is dominated by systemic white supremacy. I also want to acknowledge how challenging it is to talk about the subject of inequality in mixed company. I am inspired by what so many activists and everyday heroes amongst us are doing to help move the needle forward in the right direction. I applaud your efforts. I applaud your ongoing advocacy, due diligence and hard work. So yeah, thanks guys. I am humbled. So proud.

And while I’m rambling, here’s a short (but true) story I wanted to share.

In addition to all the other stuff, I have become a freelance writer for a corporate blog during this era of COVID-19/social unrest. I accomplished this purely by default. 

My close friend and college classmate from Hampton is one of the few Black females in senior management at Rosetta Stone, an internationally renowned online language learning platform. Like so many organizations, Rosetta Stone found itself reeling as the social unrest unfolded following the murder of George Floyd. My friend and one of her colleagues, (a white male) found themselves involved in more than a few hard discussions that were taking place at Rosetta Stone. One of the outcomes of their dialogue, due to my friend’s advocacy, was to introduce me to her colleague (who plays an integral part in deciding what content appears on Rosetta Stone’s blog.)  Subsequently I pitched a story on Kwanzaawhich was approved and currently appears on the Rosetta Stone website. This is the first time in the company’s history that they have included Kwanzaa in their coverage of the winter holidays.

And, as far as I know, by contributing this post on Kwanzaa, I have become the first African American freelancer for Rosetta Stone’s blog. I feel so privileged. It would mean the world to me if you would read my article. Here’s the link: https://blog.rosettastone.com/what-is-kwanzaa-heres-what-you-need-to-know-and-what-to-say/. Please click on, scroll down to the bottom, and give it a thumbs up. A thumbs up encourages Rosetta Stone to continue to embrace the ideals of being good corporate citizens, continue to publish diverse articles, and continue to engage in the difficult yet necessary conversations. 

Thank you very much! “Asante Sana!” Peace, Love, Joy and Blessings!

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