To the Wife of an Officer. From the Wife of a Black Man.

Editor’s disclosure: This piece was written prior to the events that took place on March 18 in which EBR Sheriff’s Deputy Sgt. Shawn Anderson was shot and killed by a suspect and is not a commentary on this or any specific incident in the news, rather a reflection from one mother to another. 

I wish I could sit down with you over coffee and a cupcake and express how much more alike we are than different. I wish I could tell you how much I appreciate you and your family’s sacrifice. Then I wish I could have a moment of your time to express my heart to you, and have you hear me — really hear me — without assuming I stand on an opposite end from you.

You see the terms “bad cop” and “thug” exist in our world for a reason. There are people who fit the definition of both. I do not wish my husband to be termed as a thug because of the color of his skin any more than you wish yours to be termed a bad cop based on the outfit he wears for work. Just like yours my children say prayers that their daddy would return home safely every day. My children pray that if Daddy is stopped by the police they will see he is a good man and let him go on his way. My sons have fears of the dangers in this world just like yours. Please understand my daughter trusts in the safety and strength of her father just like yours. My husband gets up and works hard and gives of himself tirelessly to provide a stable and good life for his family. Just like yours.

To you dear sister I would hope you could see my family and my life the same way I attempt to see yours. I wish you could look into my heart and know our experiences have some differences but at the core our concerns, our causes do not oppose each other. We both want our men and our families to be safe. I do not wish to see your husband’s life snuffed out by crime, nor do I want to see my husband’s life lived in fear that failure to signal could be a death a sentence.

Together in the unity of motherhood and wifehood we could do so much good. We could teach our families that there are people who have to deal with fears and situations that we don’t. We could be advocates for change. Squashing falsehoods and exposing the real enemies, and understanding that your fight for peace and mine go hand in hand. So when your babies say prayers for their daddy tonight won’t you please have them include one for my kid’s dad too. Have them pray that both men would do right in the world and by each other. Have them hope both of them would get home safe to the people that love them.

These are the things I would say to you over coffee, if only we could meet. Perhaps someday we will. 

Strong willed and determined since a little girl, this mom of three, wife, worship leader, writer, and career woman, believes dreams come true if you do the work. Nikyla hails from St. Louis, Mo, the “show me” state. She is a graduate of Louisiana State University and Southern University. She is a certified teacher and currently teaches at Louisiana Connections Academy. Her time out of the office is filled with family, friends and faith. She adores her three children Kyre, K’mya, and Kris and has been married to her childhood sweet heart Remiah Trask for fourteen years. Nikyla is currently a worship leader at Anchor Chapel in Baton Rouge. She has always been passionate about the things she sets her mind to. Her story of victory over severe anxiety disorder, after her third child, is truly one you must hear to believe. It will transform the way you view people with mental illness and even the way you view yourself. She is the founder of the mental health campaign entitled Be Brave. Writing has become a form of therapy for her, and the stories she shares are always honest, heartfelt, and transparent. Read more of Nikyla’s Brave Blogs here.

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