Reflections from Sara Roer

Sara bowls me over with her incredible ability to GET IT DONE. But that forward motion is founded on a deep kindness, which shows up in her reflections on our time in the park on Saturday. Here's what she has to say:

It’s 9:30am on a Saturday and I’m jogging through the rain in modified scrubs that show every. single. droplet. I’m rushing to set up a tent to shelter the materials we’ll be using for the next 3 hours while we (4 white performance artists) try to lure passers-by to talk to us about race and white culture in America. As I look for blue patches in the sky I half-hope I don’t find any because I half-hope the weather will keep anyone from coming to talk to us today. Because I’m terrified. Terrified I won’t do a “good job” (whatever that means), terrified I won’t have the right thing to say to light that elusive spark in someone else, terrified I’ll be yelled at, or worse completely dismissed. After all, what do I know anyway? I’m a thirtysomething artist who’s been to ONE undoing racism training and read only articles that come at me through my facebook feed or email. I listen to Melissa Harris-Perry. I AM NO EXPERT.

Then I feel it – this sweet voice piping up in the back of my head. It’s saying exactly some of the things I’ll be saying to people very very shortly. Things like “It really sounds like you’re suffering from some perfectionism driven by intellectualism right now. Consider how these can be framed as symptoms of Internalized Racial Superiority.” And I do. Because they are. And my recognizing my own suffering is one way in. And it’s the door I’ll hold open to anyone else who cares to enter today, and the next day, and the next.