Life, Death, and Privilege
As my blog has evolved over the past 10 years, for the most part, I’ve stopped sharing the personal stuff and tend to keep it to food. So I’m really not too sure how much to share here, but I also want to acknowledge that things aren’t normal right now. Not only because of the news and all of the heartache in the U.S. and around the world. But also because my Mom died in May.
I’m getting through, but I’m also heartbroken, and a little bit paralyzed at the moment, because my Mom was subscribed to my email list and I know this blog post is going to generate an email and that email is going to land in her inbox and she’s never, ever going to see it.
My Mom did not die of COVID-19, but she spent a couple of weeks in an extremely locked-down hospital with dozens of COVID patients. For most of the time she was there, we were not able to be there with her and hold her hand and help advocate for her. It was really, excruciatingly hard. But my family did get to see my Mom at the end, and we also got to be with her when she passed.
My heart is shattered for all of the families who have not been able to say the same.
My gut reaction when the news about Amy Cooper and George Floyd broke last week was that I just couldn’t take on more emotionally. I knew in my heart that I needed to step it up, but my brain was screaming, “Not now!” I knew that my natural aversion to confrontation, and my using that as a reason to often stay silent – even when I have strong beliefs about racism – was not acceptable. That anytime I chose silence, that made me complicit. And that even though I am feeling empty, the fact that I can choose now as a bad time to join in the fight is, in fact, a perfect, shining example of my white privilege. It’s a hard pill to swallow, but I understand a little better now.
Listen, I know I might lose you over getting “political” on a food blog, and I get it. I don’t like this stuff being thrown in my face when I don’t expect it either. It’s hard.
But it’s also a privilege for those of us who get to choose, isn’t it?
Right now it’s more important to me, personally, to work on speaking out. I know I need to do more than just this, but it’s a start. (I also believe this is more than a political issue. It’s life and death and things need to change, period.)
Going forward, in keeping with my tendency to separate business from private, I’ll probably keep the speaking out to my personal life and I’ll get back to just posting recipes here on Kitchen Treaty. But then again, maybe not – all bets are off right now, and as I do the work, maybe it will make sense for me to continue to speak out here. I don’t know.
But as far as today goes, it just didn’t feel right to share about my Mom without acknowleging everything else. And even though you won’t be reading this, Mom, I hope you’re proud of me for speaking up.
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