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Let Freedom Ring! From Juneteenth to July 4th...

Black women have long been celebrated for the strength, resilience, and sparkle they bring to the world. Yet, the journey toward true freedom involves recognizing and embracing these qualities while shedding the societal expectations that often weigh us down. Synthesizing the Strength, Resilience, and Sparkle!  framework provides Black women with tactics to navigate their paths to freedom.

Strength

The concept of strength in Black women has been both empowering and burdensome. While strength is often necessary for overcoming adversity, redefining it in ways that allow for vulnerability and self-care is crucial. True strength is not just about enduring hardship but also about seeking help and support when needed. Encouraging Black women to release the "burden of strength" can foster healthier, more balanced lives [1]. Whether Black women are considering financial, emotional, or economic freedom, exploring alternative forms of strengthening is vital, i.e., joining topic-focused groups to provide information, mentorship, and networking opportunities. I have found great relations in groups such as the Junior League and education-focused groups in my local area. While working on my dissertation, my association with professionally focused groups supported my journey with networking and even guidance on research resources. 

Resilience

Resilience, the ability to bounce back from stress and adversity, is a hallmark of Black women's experiences. This quality has been essential for navigating systemic inequalities and personal challenges. Stories of resilience highlight the flexibility and perseverance of Black women, showcasing their ability to thrive despite obstacles. Promoting resilience involves celebrating these stories and ensuring access to resources and support systems that reinforce this resilience [2]. As a Black woman, I will vouch for an effective and qualified mental health professional as a part of your self-care routine. Journaling, sister-friend groups, and other social activities are good to have on deck, but nothing can replace a mental health professional to provide a therapeutic and safe environment for us to discuss our hurts or traumas and process them appropriately for healing and better living. 

Sparkle!

Sparkle represents the unique joy, creativity, and vibrancy that Black women bring to the world. It is about embracing individuality and celebrating their positive impact on their communities. Cultivating sparkle involves fostering environments where Black women can express themselves fully and authentically. This can be through storytelling, artistic expression, or community leadership, each contributing to a sense of freedom and fulfillment. In this age of technology, Black women are utilizing social media mediums like GroupMe and Facebook Messenger groups to exhibit their talents, accomplishments, goals, and even obstacles. In these spaces, I have witnessed women giving applause, acceptance, and acknowledgment of other Black women's Sparkle! 

Conclusion

The Nacr3's Strength, Resilience, and Sparkle! method offers a holistic approach to understanding and celebrating Black women’s freedom this summer. By redefining strength, supporting resilience, and nurturing sparkle, we can create spaces where Black women are free to be their authentic selves, thriving and shining in all their brilliance. Get out this summer and let the sunshine on your accomplishments in the first 6 months of 2024. Didn't you know you were a Big Deal?! Celebrate yourself and keep working on that life of freedom that you want. 


Yours Truly, 

Dori



    Sources:
  1. pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov - Modifiable Resources and Resilience in Racially ...
  2. scholars.org - How the Expectation of Strength Harms Black Girls and ...

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