– Rachel Wright Junio, 2021 SAF Cosecha fellow
A treadmill under my desk. That's what my life had come to. Don't get me wrong – I love this treadmill, and I have found several benefits to moving more while at work. But this treadmill is a symbol. It's a symbol of overwork. It's a symbol of under-prioritizing myself and my health. It's a symbol of the life of a full-time working mom in the midst of a pandemic. No time for exercise? Stick a treadmill under your desk! No time to eat? Eat a meal replacement bar at your desk! YOU REALLY CAN HAVE IT ALL … NOT!
The way women, and especially women of color, are expected to show up in the workplace, in their homes, for their friends and extended family is unrealistic and unjust. It's unacceptable. The Cosecha fellowship clearly revealed this to me as I worked and learned alongside four other incredible women. We all struggled to take care of ourselves and do what renewed our soul and our spirit.
As a result of my time in the Cosecha fellowship, I was able to identify different aspects of white supremacy culture that are present and that I even perpetuate in both my home and in my workplace. After identifying many of these aspects, we learned about the antidotes – small steps we can take in our everyday lives and in our workplaces to push back and show up for ourselves and others. I also learned the power of taking time for myself. I still walk on my treadmill during work, but I have carved out time to exercise (for real) almost every day for the past two weeks and have started seeing a counselor. I know that doing these things will allow me to continue to show up as the leader, mother, and partner that I want to be.