It goes without saying that the world is in deep mourning over the death of Nelson Mandela. Since I'm normally pretty locked away from the world when I'm at work, I didn't hear about his passing until I was grabbing something from a store and it was all over the news and every TV in that establishment. It made me think about back to earlier this year when he had supposedly passed but it was a false alarm. But now it's all too real. My Facebook had tons of posts. Twitter was on fire with it. I made one tweet about it myself but continued on with my evening. When I came into work this morning, I decided to read more and that's when sadness really hit me.
I can't pump fake like I know tons and tons about Mandela because I don't. If I remember correctly, my dad used to listen to him speak every week on a radio show when I was growing up but being a kid, I didn't wanna listen to that; "Put on my jams, Daddy". I was ignorant. He definitely wasn't taught much, if at all in school. I should've done more research on my own. Because we have truly lost one of the Earth's last good men.
Some people may think that Mandela was only influential in South Africa but that man reached the world. He fought for equal rights, for HUMANKIND, not just South Africans and Blacks. He knew that all people deserved the right to live and speak freely. He preached forgiveness and how to treat your fellow man with kindness even if they spat on you. He was the kindest of souls.
I never met him, never even thought about him at great lengths. But my heart is heavy today. Because it is thanks in part to him that we as Black women, Blacks as a whole, and ultimately as a human, that we have some of the venues and platforms available to us, much like this blog, to get our voices to the masses. I know that just the Twitter account has 11K followers and that's flooring considering that I'm sure a lot of us never thought we'd ever be able to connect with so many like-minded people; sharing our stories and letting someone out there know that they aren't alone even if they feel like it. One particular tweet sticks out in my head (I don't remember who it was so I totally apologize and I can't look it up either) that read, "I'm thankful for @BlackGirlNerds because they've been more like a family than my own damn family." It was something along those lines. Things like this make my heart happy. And I'm sure if he knew of the platforms we as humans have now to touch, inspire, motivate, and help one another, he'd be happy too. Despite all the evil in the world, there is still so much light, even if one has gone out in his passing.
So, Nelson Mandela, thank you for all you have sacrificed for the human race. A wonderful human being many of us have never met; a leader, a father to so many, and someone we all should aspire to be. Well done thy good and faithful solider. May you find comfort and solace in the afterlife.
Much love to you all!