As a little brown-skinned girl, I longed for a safe space. In school, I excelled academically. Imaginative yet shy, I developed my voice through creative writing and visual art. Then as a graduate student pursuing a PhD in English literature, I was brutalized – stalked and raped – failing to reach my goal.
But God made me a book author soon after, a lifelong dream come true. Now, my purpose is to teach students language and to write the truth in love. Looking ahead, I am grateful for every first responder, advocate, counselor, doctor, and nurse who believed me. I forgave the people who tried to silence me. My faith is strong, my scars lovely symbols of my resilience. African American leaders must address the sexual violence devastating our community. Our churches must step forward despite the taboo. Believe our Black sisters. Protect Black women!