I FEEL OUT OF CONTROL by Sara
George Floyd was killed in Minneapolis. A police officer knelt on his neck until he died. George Floyd was black. The police officer is white. People are marching to demand that it does not happen again. They are marching against police cruelty, and against racism. I feel out of control: I'm so angry and sad. When I feel like this I like to draw pictures. I find that it helps me to feel better. But today- today was different. I took my bucket of chalk and headed outside to start drawing on the sidewalk. I began writing George Floyd's name in big yellow letters when my neighbour Mohammed walked by. "I'm angry, too," he said. He picked up a piece of chalk and started drawing figures of the protesters inside my bubble letters. While Mohammed drew, he shared his own stories of racism. My classmate Ping walked by. "I can't believe this happened" he said and, grabbing a piece of chalk, started drawing. Ping explained how the discrimination he and his family face has gotten worse with COVID-19. "I'm not a virus, you know," he said as he drew a large sunflower onto the sidewalk. Mohammed and I nodded. "We know." My neighbour Ana came by. Ana arrived in the UK some 20 years ago from Poland. "This world has become very scary," she said as she bent down and made a summer sky with sweeps of blue and white chalk. "Some people broke all the windows at my son's grocery shop because of Brexit and wrote 'Go Home' across the door," she finally whispered. Mohammed patted her hand. Kwame, my best friend from next door, came over carrying a list of people's names who also faced police unkindness. He took a piece of chalk and began writing their names inside Ping's sunflower. Terrence Crutcher was killed by police, even though he had no gun and was no threat, Kwame explained as he signed his name to the sidewalk. "Mr Crutcher's death led to protests in Tulsa." Eric Garner died after being placed in a strangling hold by a police officer. "He died because he couldn't breathe-just like George Floyd," Kwame said quietly. "Breonna Taylor was shot by police while standing in her own apartment," Kwame wrote her name. "Freddie Gray died in the back of a police van. He broke his neck!" Kwame carefully added Gray's name. Together, Mohammed, Ping, Ana, Kwame and I drew at the centre of our drawing a picture of George Floyd. I drew the head, while Ping drew the eyes and nose. Kwame drew the ears and mouth, Ana the hair and Mohammed the upper body. I proudly looked at the drawing we made. I knew that tonight's rain would likely wash away our drawing, and I knew that tomorrow morning I would likely wake up feeling again out of control and needing to draw. But for today, I said softly, to myself, "I can breathe now."