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  • Najah Amatullah

#ThisIs30


Mk. Soooo, if we’re being honest, everything after I left school on my birthday/first day of school has been kind of trash. I try to tell it like it is, but I also have to look for silver linings. If you’re my mom or you’re among my bests, you know what’s been happening and you’re holding me down. I appreciate y’all. 

Here are the silver linings:

✊🏾 Birthday night, despite being stood up and arguing with a mansplainer, I got to connect with the ever-wise culture-pusher Marc Flemon at Dope Poetry.

✊🏾Despite being way too tired, I saw a former student at Ice. He (smart, driven, black male scholar and athlete, with a great insight, sense of humor and sense of respect) told me, “I’ve been thinking about you, hoping I would see you so I could tell you ‘I GET IT NOW!’ Systemic racism is a real thing. I know we used to argue about it. But for real. (He explains the cycle of oppression to me) I’m woke as f*ck now!” This was, like, four years in the making. This was the same boy who told me he’d only marry someone with lighter skin than him. The same boy who wrote me an apology letter after his group of friends said “Miss Hylton’s uptight ‘cause she ain’t had no SAUSAGE!” Growth is amazing! It just takes time. This is why I sort of never want to move away. I wouldn’t have been at Ice to see him and hear this story. My cup runneth over. 

✊🏾 I spent time Thursday night calling potential cheer parents and I didn’t hate it. Parent contact is my weakest point. Some of y’all really try me. But that night was good.

✊🏾I turned a situation with students who weren’t listening into a reasonable and thought-provoking moment. “Those of us who are having a hard time listening and following instructions need to spend some time this weekend thinking about what kind of school year you want to have: pleasant or unnecessarily difficult, learning or always in trouble.” Etc. After which a 12-year-old boy said “I’m sorry. I’ll do better” unprompted. 

✊🏾When giving the same lecture to a different class, a student exclaimed, “how are you so calm while you say all of that?” I just shrugged and said “Practice.” 


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