I Can’t Breathe

My heart breaks for George Floyd, his family, his community.
For Christian Cooper, bird watching in Central Park.
For Breonna Taylor, a 26-year-old emergency room technician, killed in her home by the Louisville police.
For 25-year-old Ahmaud Arbery killed while jogging in Brunswick, Georgia.
For Philadelphia, Minneapolis, Atlanta, New York City, Miami, Detroit, Washington, San Francisco, all the cities across this country where there have been protests.
My heart breaks for all black bodied people who live with racial trauma and injustice every single day.
Black mothers who are seeing their children shot down in the streets.
Black children who are scared to walk down the street.
“I can’t breathe” speaks from the grave. Black people in our country are being choked by white supremacy, police brutality, and systemic racism.

It is time for sisterhood. Activated sisterhood.

It is time for me, as a white woman, a business leader, to mobilize and hold space with and for our brothers and sisters of color. In a larger way than I have stood before.
I have had the privilege of impacting the lives of tens of thousands of women. Creating powerful communities of support.
And I looked deep inside to find what is mine to give.
In what way can I serve, right now?
I want to offer the technology of the work that we do, to my community and to their wider communities.

I have no solutions to offer. But I can hold a space to feel.

I know that when we are navigating trauma, it is so easy to disconnect from our feelings and go numb, which completely disempowers us from taking action.
When we gather in sisterhood, we can use a practice called swamping, where we create a safe container to feel every drop of our feelings – the grief, terror, heartbreak, rage, and anger.
In community.

And what we feel, we can heal.

When we have the safe space to experience the depth and breadth of our emotions, in community, we can come back to center and use our feelings as fuel to go out into our world and take action for social justice. Sisterhood does not stop in the swamp – it starts in the swamp.
I want to hold space for our community, and their communities to connect to their emotions, so we can begin to take relevant steps to undo racism within and without.

For the next four weeks, we will be hosting free weekly sessions to swamp our emotions in the safe space of our community, learn from activists, and share steps that each of us can take to stand in solidarity and action with our brothers and sisters of color. We will gather together on Zoom. We had originally planned to announce a new course tomorrow called GPS*, but my inner GPS told me that with all of the injustices that have resurfaced this week, we needed to prioritize showing up in response and action here first.

Some resources that may be helpful to you are:

“Undoing Racism” by The People’s Institute for Survival and Beyond
“Race Demystified” by Milagros Phillips: giving a workshop today, Monday 12pm – 1:30 ET. Register here.

White Fragility: Why It’s So Hard for White People to Talk About Racism by Robin DiAngelo
Pleasure Activism by Adrienne Maree Brown
Me and White Supremacy by Layla F Sayad
How To Be An Antiracist by Ibram X. Kendi
What If I Say the Wrong Thing? 25 Habits For Culturally Effective People by Verna A. Myers
Racing to Justice by John A. Powell
Sister Outsider by Audre Lorde


George Floyd Memorial Fund:
Minnesota Freedom Fund:
Black Visions Collective:

With so much love,

Regena is a feminist icon, a teacher, a speaker, a mother, a best-selling author, and creatrix and CEO of The School of Womanly Arts.

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