The featured image here was done by a close friend of mine from my hometown. His name is Laurence McDuffie and he and I have stayed in touch since we were both teenagers growing up in Laurinburg, N.C. Through the years we lost touch but eventually,we always seem to reconnect…
Laurence follows my instagram and was inspired by some of my pictures–he then sketched this in CorelDRAW. I was intrigued when he sent it to me. He captured the broad contours of my form. I was flattered that I could inspire him in that way.
In looking at the idealized sketch I think of my actual reality.
Surviving the ever present threat that make living in a world jolted by a global pandemic of epic proportions is mentally exhausting. This coupled with the national tragedies rooted in police violence only make each day, repetitive as they are, even more difficult.
I have many commitments: I have my GIS contract work, my dissertation research, and my publications.
I spoke to my mother about the increasing rate of coronavirus in my home state of North Carolina (where my parents and some of my siblings still live) and my current residence of Nebraska. It all appears that business goes on despite the ever present threat. Granted, testing in my current city of Lincoln is widespread. And in N.C. Governor Roy Cooper acts with policy informed by science, not partisan intrigues.
My mother compared the need to continue physical distancing to pregnancy. “It is an imposed isolation” she says to me, “that no one but you observes because you want to protect yourself and your baby” except now this is for the safety of the self and the community as a whole.
I will remain socially/physical distant. It hurts to observe people in my neighborhood acting as if the virus is not still a threat, but I remain vigilant in protecting myself, my children and my community.