We Have So Much Room to Grow

ERIN WAINWRIGHT

What have I done so far today? My fiancé went and got me Waffle House. I watched two episodes of The Parkers, and I went to Sephora to get a new lipstick.

 

I’m a teacher, Semple Elementary, second grade. I plan to start my doctorate in education next fall. I’ve always wanted to be a change agent in the district, whatever capacity that’s at, whether that’s student curriculum, being a counselor, being a principal or an assistant principal — I’m open to anything. I definitely want to make sure that whatever I’m doing leaves an impact somewhere. And I just want to be happy. Kids? Maybe. I know we want to have kids, don’t know if we can afford to have kids.

 

I only participated in the protests four or five times. Not a lot. I wish I was down there every day. It is exhausting. You see police officers on top of the buildings with guns pointed. And you see good things — you see the sense of community, you see people from all walks of life.

 

I thank God that I’m an educator right now. I don’t think there’s anywhere else I’m supposed to be. What gives me hope are my babies, my kids, my Black girls, my Black boys, the joy that they have, the eyes wide open. They’re little sponges. When you pour into them, they accept that. We do positive affirmations every day. Every single day, before we do anything, we do five. Just knowing that I’m putting them on the right path, hopefully, and that one day they might be able to be leaders in the system, whatever system this is. That’s what gives me hope — our children to come.

 

I’m stronger than I think that I am. I am more resilient than I’ve ever been. I’m hella resilient. You go through a lot of things as a Black woman. I don’t think I’d rather be anybody but a Black woman still. For that, I’m just grateful. I’m glad that I’m here.”

This is one of 26 interviews with Black women that ran in our 2020 No. 6 print issue.
Photos by Charlee Black.

 

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