I feel God is calling me to say what I’m about to say. It’s not perfectly written, but you’ll get the gist of what He wants me to say! He wants ALL of us: Our hearts completely surrendered to His will. He wants to strip us of our ego, our pride, our concern of what others think, and our agendas.
And He’ll take us through hell to make us completely surrender to him! He’ll allow the man that you cherish and love to sleep with your best friend so that you understand that HE is the only one you should give your heart to. He’ll send foreclosure notices for the house that you cherish so that you understand that His covering is all that you need. He’ll repossess the prized, shiney car sitting in your garage and put you in a old beat up car with a GPS programmed only to him. All roads on which you travel will lead only to him.
He’ll let you walk in a room of friends whispering about you! They’ll turn their backs to you , then over their back sides, you’ll only see His face. He’ll let you run to an organization and church for support and you’ll be met with a chill from the coldest Alaskan day. Phone calls and emails will be ignored. You’ll have to grab blankets, a warm fur, and start a fire to warm your body, although it’s 100 degrees outside.
He’ll strike down your white picket fence and visit horrors upon your children – death, disabilities, violence, and mental illness — so that you have to scream out His name to save them. He’ll visit negative darkness upon you wrapped as different people and circumstances
This year a speeding bullet struck my sweet cousin, an Atlanta area detective of 22 years. It struck him in the head. It was shot from a high powered rifle and although I wasn’t there when it happen, I knew the sound of the bullet. It sounded like the speeding car that ran a red light one night as it’s driver and her boyfriend fought.
It sounded like crashing glass, paramedics rushing to the scene, and people gathered trying to rescue the boyfriend who flew threw the windshield and was pinned under the car. It sounded like the screams of a woman who was 9 months pregnant in another car. She went into labor and the baby died.
I heard the car — nothing but negative energy — coming toward me and my sons, who were in the back seat, and my husband, who was driving. But there was nothing I could do as it hit us, turned our car upside down, and we flew into other cars and a pole.
I surrendered and felt God’s peace. That morning, with the change of a simple voice mail, I had re-dedicated my life and my family to God. I kid you not. I felt dizzy when I learned about the bullet hitting my cousin. I felt dizzy at the funeral. I heard the bullet’s sound ringing in my ear.
When darkness and negative energy visit me, my body reacts. Often times I feel dizzy!
When I learned my cousin had been killed in such a violent way I felt dizzy. It was the same kind of dizziness that I felt when the car was turning upside down with my family inside of it. It was the dizziness I felt when the doctors told me there was nothing more they could do for my mom, that we should enjoy each other. It was the dizziness that I felt when the doctors told my Bigmama was in her last days.
I know the dizziness and nausea comes when I have no control of things that are happening. I had a bigoted Principal at my neighborhood school, which happens to be next door to my home, look at me in my face and tell me that my teaching was substandard when God and I both know that teaching is in my DNA and I AM A great teacher!
I felt dizzy in my meeting with her. I felt my mother, a Ph.D., educator, former superintendent of schools, stomping around in heaven. Boy was she pissed with this lady. She and I know that kids love me! That I played school from the time I was 4 , and I was always the teacher. That if it hadn’t been for the creative urgings yanking me in another direction, I would have been a Ph.D educator myself. I strategized with my Mom constantly. I told her who to trust and who to watch over her shoulder. I wrote speeches and memos for her. I was her silent and invisible warrior! When it came to the welfare of kids, we didn’t mess around! I love kids.
I can spot a smart kindergartner a mile away. I inspire kids. They respond to my inspiration because kids know when you genuinely care for them and want the best for them! Even when I’m a tough disciplinarian, they know I care. Kids always do their best to show me their best, including my three sons!
This principal who made me feel dizzy would come into my room, unannounced, and stand in the corner with a clip board and take notes as I taught. She would frown. She was probably close to 6 feet, with a ring in her nose. She would not speak to the kindergartners. She would not acknowledge me . In fact, I never once heard a student at the school call out her name.
She came to visit me over 6 times in a two week period. I would feel dizzy when she came in, my throat would be become dry, and I would barely be able to speak. When I closed my eyes, I saw her ride up on a horse with a white sheet on her head or in a big truck with a confederate sign hanging in the back window.
On my first day at the school, I had racist and bigoted teachers rush to me to ask why I got the job instead of the “blue eyed blonde”!!! I had the blue eyed blonde rush to me and ask the same thing. I had the principal, riding a horse or driving the truck, greet another teacher and say how glad she was that that teacher was there. Then look deep in my eyes, and do a bout face, saying nothing at all to me.
My body felt warm and dizzy. I felt the humiliation of bigotry and racism float through my body. I thought about Martin Luther King, my Mother, my Aunt Sarah, and my Bigmama. What did they do when White folks spit in their faces and called them nigger? I heard the stories. My Aunt would always scream for them to stop speaking. At the time, I didn’t understand why.
But now I know. I would have always passed out from a dizzy spell. Injustice makes me dizzy and sick to my stomach! I had bigoted parents, volunteering in the class room, shiver at the sound of my voice and rush out of the room at the thought of an African American woman with a deep, husky voice like mine teach their precious blue eyed babies. One of the supportive parents referred to what I was undergoing as an educational lynching.
I endured while feeling dizzy all along. I witnessed little black boys in TK and Kindergarten being called the worst, most horrible child in the class, over and over again. I love little Black boys. I felt dizzy, but said nothing because I was trying to hold on to the teaching job next door to my house. I have two wonderful Shitzu/Pekineses and the hind legs of one is paralyzed. My husband loves his dogs and he and I agreed that it would be best if I taught next door so that I could check on Tip and Blue during my recess and lunch breaks. So I endured.
I witnessed a kindergartner, a black boy, get no services whatsoever although he was climbing the walls and out of control when little white boys and girls with far less problems had aids assigned to them and pull out services. The service received by this little kindergartner were an order by the Principal to sit in the office during all play times, unable to eat and play with the other kindergarteners. This kindergartner was ostracized by the entire school of Non-African American personnel. I felt dizzy.
God had told me over and over that my elementary teaching days were up but I did not want to let go. I tried to drown out his voice. I was like Gideon in the book of Judges. For 20 years I’ve asked over and over for God to provide proof to me, delaying destiny. When I got the letter that I had been awarded the Distinguished Dean’s Award, MFA Creative Writing and Creative Writing for the Performance Arts, University of California, where I’ll concentrate on creating writings to impact social change, I knew it was time to say a final good bye to LAUSD.
I start the program in September. There I’ll become equipped to take Our Voices Our Stories, http://www.ourvoicesourstories.com around the world. Yet, there was something deep in me trying to figure out a way to hold onto LAUSD and continue subbing next door. My plan for the 2015/2016 school year included subbing next door, even though I knew it was going to be close to impossible for me to do that. I’ve been awarded a Gluck Foundation Fellow, University of California, Riverside, to teach workshops in schools to help students find their voice and tell their story with the written word. I’ve applied for a TA job, teaching undergraduate writing courses. I’ll find out about that soon.
Good has came out of this horrible season. Like Job in the bible, I knew that it was He who was allowing all the negative things to visit me so that He could move me where He wanted. I held my head high, dressed professionally, and was kind to everyone at the bigoted school next door to my house. The students loved me and I could hear, “Mrs. Kelly” being screamed as I walked across the campus. Teachers asked that I tone down my chirpy spirit in the mornings.
It’s a shame that so much covert racism exist in this world and is still manifesting in horrific ways like it did for the Charleston Divine 9.
The Voices in America don’t have color! We’ve created magic. See here: https://vimeo.com/126547914 What the audience saw on Sunday, May 3, 2015 at 7 p.m. wasn’t rehearsed to perfection. There was no glitzy set. It was a 1/3 of the entire play, but it was creative energy shared on the stage with God standing by winking at me while He held my hand and whispered, “Don’t you dare give up, girl.” My writing journey has been long and hard! My sons wonder why I keep going. I have despite being visited by darkness and negativity over and over again.
Finally, I’ve directed, and I’ve always wanted to direct. Finally, I’ve acted, and I’ve always wanted to act. I was always too scared to do either. Stripped down, though, with out ego, holding on to God’s hands, I had the courage to do it all as he whispered every step of the way, “Never Give Up.”
I invited my aunt and uncle, my counsin’s parents, to visit me the week of the play, and we enjoyed each other in such a special way. I had a birthday celebration for my uncle.
The weather was in the 80s, beautiful, and perfect. They were happy and content, eating my hubby’s delicious home-made cooked meals, while sight seeing all over Los Angeles. They slept in each other’s arms on the beach. They said they hadn’t eaten and slept, really, since Terence’s death. God said, “Yes!” Their visit was part of His plan, although I was feeling dizzy from so many things. I kept going and, eventually, started singing: “I do not agree. This is not for me!”
I AM was in the picture. God was visiting with me. He knew that I would eventually sit down and write to you.
You, facing a move you don’t want to make.
You, having to give up something you love.
You, facing abandonment by friends and family.
You, letting go from the job you love.
You, facing a foreclosure or a repossession.
You who have just discovered that the man you cherish doesn’t love you back, again!
I know how much the physical things we go through hurt us. I know how it feels like someone has taken a sledge hammer to your heart and cracked it wide open.
I’m human and on May 4th after I had endured it all, I had chest pains and had to rush to emergency. Later that week, my blood pressure was 170 over… and I was a nervous wreck until… I stopped holding on to the way I wanted things to go: A nice and friendly neighborhood that welcomed me with open arms.
When I laid down Terence’s death and accepted that God was going to ease the burden, the physical pains went away. When I let go of LAUSD, retained a lawyer, and filed a claim against them for having a racist principal in my neighborhood school, for allowing a racist environment to exist among teachers, parents and school personnel the dizziness subsided.
When I was able to say and mean, “Your will be done, God.” Nothing:! Plays, teaching, friends, groups, and church are more important than my relationship with you! I want one thing, God. YOU. The great I AM!!! I trust you! And now with this note, I encourage you to do the same. Let Go. Grab the hand of the great I AM and walk into your future. Listen to only one Voice. The Voice of the great I AM. God! For He is your future! In the play, I played the role of Georgia Mae, a strong Black woman, who has been missing all day. She’s been praying and contemplating a big decision. You’ll have to come to the play to find out what she decides. But before Georgia enters, Yolanda Adams’ Open My Heart is played and danced to.
The lyrics are below:
talk to me Ohhh, ohhh, ohhh,
talk to me Alone in a room
It’s just me and you I feel so lost
‘Cause I don’t know what to do
Now what if I choose the wrong thing to do I’m so afraid,
afraid of disappointing you
So I need to talk to you
And ask you for your guidance
Especially today When my mind is so cloudy
Guide me until I’m sure I open up my heart (ooo yes)
My hopes and dreams Are fading fast
I’m all burned out
And I don’t think my strength’s gonna last
So I’m crying out
Crying out to you Lord,
I know that you’re the only one
Who is able to pull me through
So I know I need to talk to you
And ask you for your guidance
Especially today When my world seems so cloudy,
Lord Guide me until I’m sure
I open up my heart (oh yeah, yes I do)
So show me how
P.S. TRUST GOD and ALLOW HIS WILL TO BE DONE IN YOUR LIFE! HIS IS THE ONLY VOICE THAT REALLY MATTERS!