BIPOC Parenting Series: Jalyssa's Story
As a community-focused company, Kabrita USA strives to be inclusive and to continuously celebrate diversity. In honor of Black History Month, Kabrita USA is featuring a BIPOC Parenting Series, for the entire month of February. The BIPOC Parenting Series centres BIPOC (Black, Indigenous, and People of Color) parents’ experiences. Our goal is to enhance greater representation of BIPOC parents in the media, as well as to amplify BIPOC voices and stories.
Today, we are sharing Jalyssa’s story about her young children encountering racism, and how she fills her home and heart with hope.
I remember the first time my oldest son had an encounter with racism, he was 2. Barely old enough to try and form a sentence yet was called a “dirty” person and rejected from the group of kids he was trying to play with. When my husband came home and told me the story I felt a sense of rage that was unfamiliar to me. It was in that moment my blissful ignorance was stripped from me and the reality of mothering little black boys hit me like a wrecking ball.
At that time I had 2 sons and had no idea that God was going to give me 2 more. Four little kings to raise in a country that removed their crown before they were even born. The moment I beheld the beauty that is my boys, something awakened in me & I was never the same.
Mothering Black children comes with an immeasurable amount of intentionality. We have to create an environment filled with peace and joy yet arm them to face the battles awaiting them outside of our home. What a unique challenge we face a challenge that can often leave us hopeless and weary.
Everyday their plight is on my mind. Every birthday is a reminder that to some, they are closer to being scary not adorable. So I will use every breath to remind them of their glory, prepare them for what is to come, spur them on to be the kings that they are, all the while ensuring a joy filled life and an atmosphere of peace.
Each morning I have my boys recite affirmations. “I am strong. I am brave. I am bold. I am courageous. I am the head and not the tail. I am above and not beneath. I am an Heir of glory. I am called. I am chosen. I have a purpose. I am loved. I am a child of God.” As their little voices shout these big words my home and heart fill up with hope. A hope that saturates my sons and I can see their confidence in everything they do.
That is what I love the most about being a mother to BIPOC children... having the strength to hope even still. My oldest son is now 7 and has already encountered racism again, I know it won't be the last. But I know with the intentions of me and my husband they will rise, even still.
Our ancestors showed us that the vigorous labor of BIPOC parents is not in vain. Our children will reap the glory of the seeds we sow now. We do this together, we are communal. In my fellow BIPOC moms I find strength. When I open my phone to another story of black breath stripped away too soon and feel hope leaving my heart, I can look to other mamas that stand in the same boat of fear as I do and we can push one another along to hope again.
I pray that as parents to these queens and kings, we always live with hope and cling to joy.
“We must accept finite disappointment, but never lose infinite hope.” - Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.
Kabrita USA BIPOC Parenting Series shares genuine stories written by parents from the BIPOC community. Each story offers a different perspective from their personal parenting experience. To read more stories, please visit our Nourish Blog.