Black love has never failed us. It’s forever tested and forever undermined by the society we live in — yet continues to uplift and sustain us. Black love reminds us each and every time we have been failed, that we carry a divine love for each other. We just saw an incredible win for our community foreshadow the end of a catastrophic administration. An incredible win led largely by Black women that calls us to build on this momentum to create permanent change.
Take a deep breath. We just saw (and won’t forget) our country fight to reclaim inclusive values that value more than straight, white men. We’ve opened a new chapter filled with potential for where our community can go from here. Possibly getting the chance to transform our country. If there was ever a time for us to rejoice in and refill the love we share, it’s now as we create the path forward for our nation and our community. That love is what will continue to pull us forward in the coming years.
Over the past four years especially, Black Love has been one of the places I come to refill my spirit. To see us not only sharing the stories of our love, but also how that love has been tested and used to bring us out of some of our darkest moments. I bring those conversations to my friends and family to talk about how that love has strengthened them. Now I can bring those conversations straight to them. This year, the annual Black Love Summit is transformed into the virtual event we deeply need right now. As a docuseries, Black Love is known for its ability to bring powerful stories of marriage to the forefront, allowing couples to celebrate one another and delve into shared experiences. As an online platform, BlackLove.com creates content on everything from self care to sex to maternal health. This year’s Black Love Summit brings the fullness of our love and life to reality in a two-day virtual experience exploring love, partnership, and community together.
This past weekend, I felt a weight lift off of my chest as the election results were called from swing states, not realizing the full weight of the political stress I’ve been carrying for this country. Going into this month unsure of whether we’d move forward or take yet another huge step backward. I spent the weekend basking in the memes, the honking horns, celebration, and sheer joy that the world is feeling right now, and I don’t want that to end. I want to spend as much time as possible steeped in the joy and magic that has once again propped this country up. What better way to do that than spending two days jamming, drinking, loving, and healing with Black people?
The Black Love Summit takes place for two days, November 14-15th, and kicks off with Jemele Hill and Ian Wallace with a discussion about how critical Black Love is to our liberation — a necessary conversation for our community if we hope to continue building the momentum we just witnessed. Then we delve into conversations about building together within partnerships, developing and sustaining self love, and breaking down the myths that surround marriage with some real talk and cocktails. Continuing on day two, the Summit brings us back together to talk sustaining our love and ourselves as Black people in America with Reginald and Brittany Packnett Cunningham — a Black couple who knows a thing or two about life and love on the frontlines of change. From there, talks about intimacy, the differing experiences of men and women, and wives and husbands happen in between dance breaks. This Summit and its virtual venue are gearing up to give me exactly what I need right now.
Whereas the election of President Obama was and will forever be monumental, this win feels different. In 2016, I watched people who look like me mourn while more than half of our country rejoiced. We reassured one another and went to work on ensuring we protected ourselves while our white counterparts went about their lives as usual. Over the next four years we would see children placed in cells reminiscent of Japanese internment camps, that same president impeached, and our country brought to the brink of war through bullish, ignorant, and unqualified attempts at diplomacy. The voices of domestic terrorists are louder than I’ve ever known them to be, and “us vs. them” narratives have oppressors believing the oppressed are keeping them down. Make it make sense.
No, this win feels different. This win feels like communities of people who believe in inclusion being fed up with ignorance. It feels different for no other reason than Black communities, Black women, and communities of color being acknowledged for showing up and showing out. For the first time in what feels like forever, I have hope in where we can go as a country, but more importantly as a community. I have hope that the way we just made our voices heard will continue into city council, school board, and midterm elections. We just demonstrated what happens when Black people come together and decide together what will move us forward – we change the world.
I’m finding opportunities today, tomorrow, and every day after to celebrate us and our love, and this virtual Black Love Summit is next on my list.
Get tickets for the Black Love Summit here.