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My Black is joyful, ever-present, and influential.

Monica Skipwith standing in front of a blue wall

By Monica Skipwith

February 15, 2023

I absolutely adore February. I mean great things happen in February. Some of my favorite people in the world have birthdays during this time; love is everywhere with Valentine’s day; and of course, it’s Black History/Future’s month. February is definitely joy and love encapsulated and I LOVE that.

Can we say celebration all month long?

My Black is joyful. For me, this month is a time to revel in my skin through celebrating my Blackness and community. The moments in community laughing uncontrollably, joking while playing spades, listening to the aunties and uncles tell stories, and running to the dance floor when Tamia’s song comes on— knowing I don’t know the moves—  does wonders for my soul. My people are laughing, smiling and being themselves. The camaraderie is beautiful. It’s safe here, and that brings me much joy.

My Black is ever-present. Our stamp is on everything. Name something we didn’t add our swagger to. Our Blackness is woven into the very fabric of this country, the music, the architecture, lingo, food and inventions. You name it, and blackness is there. Sometimes it’s incredibly hard living in America; especially when our experiences and contributions are gaslit. But, because our culture is so ingrained into everything we touch, regardless of what comes our way, there is no denying that our Blackness is everywhere. 

My Black is influential. Our culture is full of trendsetters and is the epitome of inspiration. We have our own fly that’s unmatched. It’s not just in what we wear, but how we talk and how we walk. We do things in a certain way; it’s just effortless. I feel so much pride when we show up unapologetically. I’m inspired to do the same.

Reflecting on the joyful, ever-present and influential nature that is Black culture, as we move through this month, I encourage you to explore what this time of celebration means for you. I hope this month brings you hope and inspiration as you celebrate the richness and vastness of your heritage. May you feel loved and affirmed while in community. Happy Black History/Futures Month.