Dear 12 year old me,
I saw you a few months back. I saw you in a little brown boy with energy, style and charisma. He’s older than you, more assured than you, but he reminded me of you nonetheless. He found his home in the theater, a place you eventually made your refuge. While his idols are different than yours (he hopes to follow in the footsteps of Kim Kardashian), his spirit is akin to your own.
Unfortunately, it’s not the energy, light, or joy that reminds me of you, it’s the longing for belonging that reminds me of your trials and tribulations. When I asked him why he looked so upset in a group of assumed friends, he said he had no friends there, unable to relate his experiences to theirs. In this moment I saw you; well your future. At 12, you’re just beginning to break through the veil; beginning to pierce a fog of insecurity and morality that would have you repress what you’ve known all along, with some assurance at age 5. Continue reading A Letter to Me in Adolescence
While most people are appalled at the thought of a new years’ resolution, I have tasked myself with the same goal for the past two years. I have told myself every year since 2015 that I will be the most me in the coming year. What this task means is that I take the time at the end of the year to really check in with myself: was I as true to myself as I could be? Each year the answer is honestly no, so why do I keep tasking myself with this impossible goal? In reality, the idea of being the most me is a moving target, which makes it the perfect goal. Being the most me at any given moment can mean a myriad of things. One year being the most me was all about conquering grad school, finding a deeper self-confidence and being kinder to myself. Since I’ve graduated grad school, I’ll have to find a new set of rulers to measure myself against.
The artificial end of a year, a man made closing of the chapter is a great time look at yourself and check in. Are you actually being honest with your wants, needs and desires? I did a lot of growing this year, and it’s that growth that inspires me to continue working toward a greater version of myself. I see the potential within myself to do more, strive to be better and be shine brighter than ever before. There have been times in the last few months where I couldn’t leave the bed. There were times in the last few months were I doubted the development I’ve gone through this year. However, I have to remind myself of my personal accomplishments as a guide into greater achievement.
This year I discovered so much unnecessary insecurity as it relates to my abilities as an artist, my body and my intelligence. This isn’t an indictment of my self worth, but more of an acknowledgment of the room for improvement. I also made room to discover how much my own thoughts and actions have kept me from successful dating. While it is true there are many factors out of my control, a recent change in desire, attitude and approach has yielded interesting results (I’m sure I’ll write more about this in the future). Although all the time spent with myself at the end of the year has brought up a lot of my repressed fears and insecurities, it’s allowed me time to get real with myself about the work I’ve yet to do.
In recent years, we’re extremely hopeful for the coming year due to the increasingly terrible state of the world. I’m not sure we are as hopeful going into 2018, but I would encourage us all to find our center. I’m personally tired of being bombarded by people and things that do not bring me joy. In 2018 I want to actually be more selfish about my space and my time. I want to reclaim my body in 2018, which includes taking up space, wearing clothes that do not minimize or hide me. I want to be bold in my size and queerness. Being the most me means maximizing the kindnesses I owe myself and speaking softly to the voice in my head that would prevent me from walking into my greatness and presenting my truth to the world.
In 2018, I challenge all of you to take up the mantle so set before you, decide that you will be the most true to yourself in 2018. This can be as small as making time for more reading, or picking up an art practice. Whatever you do in 2018 to better yourself can only help you toward your overall goals.
I have to be honest with myself: I have been using the Internet and social media as a crutch. The world is scary. No, I’m not talking about the impending nuclear assault, or the men finally being held accountable for their actions after years of inaction. No, I’m talking about interpersonal relationships. I’ve been avoiding connections with people in real life; preferring the distance facebook and instagram put between us. What I’m talking about the V word we try so hard to avoid: “vulnerability”. I have been trying to write this blog post for at leas two weeks now; every time I sit down to write I am scared about the truth I know inside my soul. I’m not walking the walk, and quite frankly, if I talk the talk, I’ll force myself to be accountable. Continue reading Be open. Be soft. Be squishy.
When you’re diagnosed with clinical depression and generalized anxiety, your mental health intersects with all of your identities in complex ways. I’m excited to dive into the intersection of my mental health with one of my most important life roles. My hope is that other mothers who struggle with mental illness will experience the same catharsis reading this that I feel writing it. I am sure that like myself, their womanhood and the expectations placed upon it by society informs much of the anxiety they experience as mothers. Continue reading I’m a young mom living with a mental illness
I think as a culture we have a problem with autonomy; we cherish the charisma and machismo of the lone ranger, the white cishet man to save us all, or provide the standalone archetype for each of us to ascend to. However, in terms of letting people make decisions for themselves, decisions that often have little to no impact on other people, we are often hard pressed to “let people live” or “let them be great”. While most of the conversation about personal choice has be surrounding women’s reproductive rights, my reference to the phrase “my body, my choice” extends beyond the basic rights women should have when making decisions about their bodies. Quite obviously, people’s bodies are their own; the choices they make with them should be their own as well. Continue reading My Body, My Choice
Just like your friends, I’m going through a quarter life crisis. I’m sad to say that it’s not as dramatic or exciting a life crisis as I’d like it to be. I’m not finding myself by traveling the world or going back to school for my 4th degree or suddenly jumping into a minimalist lifestyle. Those cool endeavors are being taken on by friends who are near and dear to my heart, but myself- I can’t even quarter life crisis right.
My quarter life crisis looks like spending just a little too long deciding if I’m going to “like” someone else’s good news post because jealousy says no but karma says yes. Continue reading JLYF- I’m Going Through A Quarter Life Crisis…