For My Fallen Sisters in Atlanta’s Spa Shootings, One Year Later
Yesterday was quite a day. I found myself without the words to say. It took me a day to collect some thoughts. It will indeed take me longer to further digest the impact of these events as we continue to move forward. Thankful for the community of support and care.
From Chicago to Atlanta to Minneapolis to Seoul. Coast to coast and around the world. To my sisters here and fallen. Our allies beyond our population.
We are one family, one community. One year later I found myself still without the words to say, without the strength to say what I still feel within. Shock at what norms we continue to face as Korean American immigrant women.
This moment last year came at a strange transitionary point in my own life. Out from the shadows of years of poverty, single parenthood, under the table jobs, brushes with trafficking, abuse, structural invisibility, and a struggle to be valued, to be seen. And by the gift and precarious fight for my education and for my child to see his mother thrive, into the light of equity and community-based servant leadership I began to step.
So when this happened in Atlanta. When our sisters’ lives were so callously, egregiously snuffed out, it caught me off guard. For the world of danger and of dangerous men, I thought surely I had been distancing myself from. Surely I was safer now. Surely we all were as Korean women. The world was changing. I was changing; I had survived. How, I asked myself, could this be?
This took my breath away all over again, cut deep into my soul.
To escape the clutches of racism and misogyny, only to bear witness to my own falling to it as I set foot on the hallowed grounds of liberation myself? There is no real way to memorialize the lives lost, nor the unnerving imprint of grief it left on my soul forever.
Rest in power.
We live on to fight for you, and for us all.