Lending your voice

Andrea Wright discusses the importance of being authentic and involved to promote visibility and collaboration

 Andrea Wright
Andrea Wright MSc is a MSK physiotherapist in private practice and Somatic educator working in London

At the time of writing, there’s been an unimaginable attack on democracy in Washington’s Capitol Hill.

Another ideological fracture after 2020’s pandemic, illuminating gaping health inequalities and racial tensions where society’s ills and individual fears reveal themselves. In the words of Maya Angelou, When someone shows you who they are, believe them the first time. People know themselves much better than you do.

In facing the shadowy aspects of ourselves, we have more opportunity to enact transformative change.

I was afraid for most of my life without language to understand what I was resisting in myself: that I am a queer woman. 

Now, I lend my voice unapologetically to disrupt the status quo and lead a conversation towards justice. It requires that we stand in all that we are and face the fear of being seen.

Being part of the LGBTQIA+ community involves calculating risks of disclosure; potential ostracisation, discrimination, abuse, increased work-related stress, and disproportionate discrimination for non-white identities (Stonewall, 2018). 

February’s theme, ‘body, mind, spirit’, compels me to embrace all of me and reflect on my own sense of wholeness and loving self-acceptance not for others but for me ‘seeing’ myself. 

Confronting my fears of being seen and the journey of ‘coming in’ rather than ‘coming out’ as a public declaration to my family and later to my professional colleagues was one of the most unnerving moments of my life. Yet exposure also brought degrees of relief, optimism and joy. 

Connecting with the CSP LGBTQIA+ community enables my voice to be heard. 2020 has shifted the CSP agenda towards greater equity.

My participation in reshaping the EDI strategy as a black, queer woman is an opportunity to ensure our collective vision and actions align across all our intersecting identities and experiences. 

As Audre Lorde reflects, ‘When I dare to be powerful in the service of my vision, it becomes less and less important whether I am afraid.’  

  • Andrea Wright MSc is a MSK physiotherapist in private practice and Somatic educator working in London

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