Letter to Edna Dixon-Lawson:
Mom! Rest in the eternal ever after. This week's topic is a byproduct of choices you made before I was born. Your intention to not let our world's divisive history stain my thought patterns worked. You raised me to be a human being, and not a color of a human being, and it has paid off in ways that are compounding faster than interest. There are many emotional benefits: focusing on the internal aspects of my existence, such as self-reliance, determination, resilience, and faith, has always lowered the impact of the harmful intentions of other people, regardless of the shade of their skin. I've also realized that it has helped with my ability to shed all the extra weight that I carried for years. I did not fully appreciate your impact on my early development until I started reading about the lives of others. My addiction to reading is also because of your leadership. I remember you talking about reading Wayne Dyer when you were pregnant with me. When I first read, You Erroneous Zones, I understood why it aligned so well with my thought patterns at the time. Even though I did fall off in many areas of my life at certain points, my ability to bounce back was much easier because of your style of leadership. The weight of the world has not been merged into my psyche, which has allowed me to contribute to our humanity’s development in ways that I still cannot believe to this day, and I am really just beginning this journey.
There are a couple of groups of people who have not been happy about my frame of thought. One group feels that I think too highly of myself due to my choice of not attaching my essence to "the color I belong to.": the other group feels that I am a trader or sell out because I am not “embracing my roots.” What both of these groups of people fail to realize is that I feel equally connected to ALL PEOPLE due to how I was raised. The belief that I am more or less valuable than another person is not what you taught me Ma, so instead of getting angry at these two groups, I increase my empathy and compassion because they can only respond to the programs they were raised by.
It is not like you were never a victim of racism or gender discrimination either. As an adult, I remember when you told me about the caucasian police officer who stopped you in North Carolina when you were in your early twenties. He told you to get out of your car and sit in his so he could question you. When he started rubbing your leg, another car drove by and you believed that the “Lord sent the car to save you from harm.” That is just one of the many run ins you had over your years; I am so thankful that there was never a moment during my upbringing when you expressed any hate towards ALL of any type of people, because of the actions of a few.
Based on your example, I will continue to live with an inclusive state of mind. Regardless of how labels are used, I will remember that I am connected to ALL PEOPLE. I will respect what anyone chooses to call themselves; however, I will not allow their identities to limit what I perceive them as, which is a direct reflection of source power. Since we all grow through emotional states that block our connections at times, one of my many responsibilities will be to not let one’s actions permanently change how I view them.
Until the next time I write to you, I know that you are always with me Ma. I look at your picture every day before I hop on my elliptical and reflect on the sacrifices you made to ensure my continued development. I will never take your choices for granted and promise to represent the love that you poured into my existence for the remainder of my days. Love you!
From your only son, Kinja
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