So I have been working on a community for women of color for years y'all! YEARS! I thought I finally have the perfect concept with Women of Color in Sport or WOCIS until a few months ago. I was speaking to colleagues of mine that are also minority women and I made, what I thought was a motivational and community inspired statement. I said "us minority women have to have each others back." My statement was met by a confused look. My co-worker was quiet and left my office in a hurry. For hours, avoiding me and not making contact, by the end of the day I finally asked what the problem was. She was offended by my statement of calling her a minority. She said that I am one of the only people that look at her that way. I was shocked. But, it put everything I was doing with my group into perspective. I am a Black woman. And I am proud of that and I am 100% sure that when people see me or meet me for the first time, they are sure that I am Black. I have never doubted that fact for my entire life. I may not have been as aware of that being a snap judgment, but through the years I have grown to know that it is one of huge part of who I am. For me, perception is reality. Whether I agree with it or not. So I try to be more intentional with what I am doing and that my experiences are different than others. I know that I have always wanted more of a community with other Black women in my field. In my office. Good grief, in all areas of my life! I honestly am tired of it and so this is my way of doing something about it. I totally agree that if you are not majority then we should all just check the "other" box. That doesn't feel good. It may be selfish, but the fire in my belly to create a community that looks like me is for me. It is something that I want and professionally I believe its something that I need. We all need. So we don't feel alone. And even if its a different perspective or different experiences, if you identify as a black woman, then that perception, that snap judgement, is the same place it all starts.
I am so excited to meet you and build this community together. Heading into 2019 as Black Women in Sport!