Proud Scholar Moments

Journal Entry by Eryn McCallum

Eryn Entries from my personal journal with edits for clarification/context and some omissions for privacy

July 23, 2020

Writing Activity with Dr. V <3


What is your current writing ritual?

I write daily out of a now 2-month-old habit.  Usually, I prefer to wait until I’ve learned something new to write.  Other times, I just write my feelings/thoughts and don’t force myself to write more or less than what naturally comes out.  I also make sure to date all my pages so I’ll have some context if I ever reread my entries.

What is my healing ritual?

  • Allow self to feel my feelings and sit with my emotions
  • Write about what I’m feeling
  • Take a hot shower
  • Watch Type 4 natural hair routine videos on YouTube
  • Pray about the situation(s) I need to heal from
  • Open my blinds to allow the sun into my room and dance to my favorite songs in the morning


An ancestor who inspires me is…

My paternal grandmother.  My dad always speaks highly of her in a way in which I could only dream my children will talk about me one day.  She’s always laughing a big, beautiful laugh that comes from her belly.  She is so considerate and smart.  Grandma reminds me of my dad, my brother, and myself and there’s so much power in seeing her beautiful spirit live on and be passed down in that way.  

Talk to your ancestor about why you write.

Hi Grandma.  I write because I am using this as a method to permanently instill in myself that my being is important.  It was about time for me to come to the realization that just by existing as a young Black woman, I am enough and I matter.  The same way you matter just by being you.  I want to make you proud and keep your loving, welcoming spirit as a huge part of me, passing it on to my own children and to everyone I come in contact with.



July 24, 2020

My work day ended early today.  We just finished our oral history interview with Mama Saru.  She was so sweet, calm, funny and easy going and was clearly trying to make things easier for us, which I think we all really appreciated.  She had some really amazing ideas and insight on the Civil Rights Movement and on Black Lives Matter that are going to be super valuable to the documentary.  I am so grateful to have gotten to meet her.  I love being in the presence of my elders, especially Black women elders.  

I also think Dr. V’s writing/meditation exercise yesterday not only flipped some sort of switch within me but also made me feel more ready and able to accept the gift that is Mama Saru.  I want to meditate more and see what else my heart and mind can open up to.  I think I’ll make that a goal of mine for the month of August.

-Eryn McCallum (AAPF Young Scholar)