There was once a boy who waited for his father to call.
Nine years old, he’d wait hot, on a sticky couch, by a shell-colored phone, next to a screen door that had a habit of slamming shut with an urgency he didn’t understand.
The boy waited with the diligence of an owl.
Finally, his father called. Finally.
With the two of them on the line, the boy was eager with a battery of questions. Vulnerable questions that slipped from his mouth before he could lock them under his tongue. Nine years of questions seeped out. “Where have you been?” “Why didn’t you want me?”
And his father paused for a breath.
Father and son sat for a moment, connected by silence. And then, without saying a single word, the father hung up on his son.
The click of the phone stabbed, digging unreachable into the boy like a shard of glass. He felt a shame so heavy he fell through the floor of it. At nine, there are feelings we don’t have names for: “abandonment”, “erasure”, “disrespect”.
To this day, our young hero, now a man, has a visceral anger to being hung up on. There is an erasure in such an abrupt silence that feels like a small, disrespectful death. How is there so much thunder in a click?
And yet, the small boy who waited for his father to find him has become a warrior. Not just any warrior, but a warrior with kind eyes, who leads with his heart. And when asked how he learned to balance his power, the warrior always points to his weapon.
“I write,” he says.
“I write to not hang up on my own questions. I write because I am willing to answer my own pain, my own anxiety.
Poetry, rap & songwriting have unlocked creative depths I never knew I had. I write to show up & say, ‘we’ll find language for this together’.
And this allows me the power to do that with others. Writing returned my humanity, my ability to reach for the humanity in others—regardless of pain. To identify other people, whole communities, who’ve been “hung up” on. Regularly. So many questions. There are so many of us who are now strong enough to pick up the phone for ourselves.”
Some of our most important warrior work is channeled through the heart. Ain’t that how it goes? Oppression keeps hanging up on us. The ‘click’ is devastating. But, that ‘click’ is also the spark that sets us on a path to answer our own call.
We become what we deserve.
The catalyst to us becoming our own heroes is often rooted in a moment when someone that we depended on did not show up. Sometimes this is a system, a government, or a family member.
Today, take a moment to explore your ‘click’.
What inspired you onto your Warrior’s Path? What person or system “hung up” on you so much that you Warrior’ed up?
What power have you been finding in yourself to answer your inner-child’s call?
With all this power that you are amassing, how are you choosing to answer your own call? How are you answering the calls of the community around you?