Serenity Sunday: How I Became A Butterfly

By being in service to others I have learned a lot about myself and that of community advocacy.

Intangible things an advocate can offer his/ her community that go a long way– time, talent, and shared knowledge, experiences, or resources.

In the past, sharing knowledge was a no-no because the striver’s goal was to be ahead of the curve.

We’ve all heard of the crab in a bucket mentality, a popular metaphor that implies, “If I can’t have it, neither can you.”

Equally real is what I call the moth mentality… “Now that I got it, I won’t dare tell you how.” While moths are known for eating clothes, most moths actually do not have mouths. The luna moth, for example, has beautiful green silk wings that glow in the dark… and no mouth. These insects tend to have a life span of 7-10 days.

Moth-minded people have a glamorous exterior and an impact that reaches only an exclusive group or a specific kind of people. Moth-minds can easily become crabs when paranoia toward others becoming more significant settles in.

As I continue to evolve, I find myself becoming the moth’s antagonist…

Google defines knowledge sharing as:

“An activity through which knowledge is exchanged among people, friends, families, communities, or organizations.

Shared knowledge is positive in that it 1) is deliberate, 2) ensures growth and success in those who want to receive/ utilize the information and re-invest, 3) becomes an act of kindness and/or social responsibility, and 4) has the potential to reach and impact the masses.

We must advocate for equal knowledge the way we advocate for equal opportunity. Why else is so much information becoming available to us on the internet? Unfortuntely, not everything that is freely available will be taken advantage of. Not all recipients of knowledge will put in the required effort to experience accomplishment or freedom.

…But going back to being in service to others, you never give up on community. You never get tired of sharing. Of giving. You essentially become a butterfly, forever flying and fighting for the potential of others.

This weekend, my non-profit organization kicked off Black History Month by celebrating 6 prolific black women writers.

These women have authored fervent, heartfelt narratives that are diverse in style and genre. Each book is unique in its own right.

While SMMEIIS’ ultimate goal is to promote literacy, one thing we endeavor to uphold with our annual literary festival and book fair is the act of knowledge sharing.

In a panel discussion with the authors, we learn about the opportunities and obstacles literary artists experience on their publication journeys. Audience members also receive resources and information that encourage them to write their stories and produce their own manuscripts. Knowledge and resources shared by this year’s 6:

1. Just write. Even if it means the material comes out random and all over the place. Get a journal. Write everthing down immediately because you will forget things.

2. Don’t worry about what other people think. It could be that the very people you are worried about won’t even take time to read your book.

3. Invest in a good editor and if you can’t afford one, self- edit using a website like grammarly.com or find an English major/ English teacher who can assist you.

4. Build your own book using free (upgradable) programs such as Kindle Direct Publishing, Fiverr, or Canva.

5. Get a writing coach or accountability partner… someone who will constantly ask you how the writing is coming along. Join a collective of writers or surround yourself with people who genuinely support your dream.

For more on SMMEIIS’ programs, visit our website and sign up to receive our newsletter. Also, like or follow our page on Facebook and catch the latest footage from our book fair. Photos by Surbrina Cameron.

Alexa, play “Black Butterfly” by Sounds of Blackness. đź–¤

Clinnesha is a writer, wife, mom, meta-artist, and social entrepreneur who feels most accountable to southern, black citizen-artists, elders, children, and families. Her work is at the intersection of arts, culture, innovation, and community.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s