This year, as chaotic as it’s been, has allowed me time for introspection. Today, 7/27, is my birthday; I have a lot to say to my younger self. They should be very proud.
I’ve been weird all my life, not fitting in and feeling pressured to do so. I have a new appreciation for weirdness and being a weird Black kid; this is my love note to all the others.
Permitting yourself to be authentic is beautiful, but it takes practice, trust, and safety. We hear over and over that we should be ourselves, without the warning that it needs to fit someone else’s design.
Black womxn are at the crossroads of all social issues; poverty, racism, sexism, homelessness, homophobia, reproductive rights, and classism are only a few examples. The experiences and stories of Black womxn are unacknowledged and erased, yet, they are expected to bear the emotional and physical labor of pushing these movements forward.
Our skin, as beautiful and as shimmering as it is, is ribboned with cautionary tales from our ancestors; intricately weaved to remind us that our history is not distant at all, we confront it each day.
Raise your hand if you do not like getting your picture taken ? If you raised your hand either physically or mentally, I am right there with you.
Don’t spend too much time behind or away from the camera that you forget to include yourself.
Our parents try to mold us into their image and society tries to ensure we stay in line. The framework you are born into is supposed to fit like a glove, but it doesn’t always. It doesn’t make sense but buried deep inside yourself is a truth that’s longing to break free and you can’t explain why.
This is how I feel about most aspects of my life, but today we’re going to focus on gender.
10 more unusual facts about yours truly.
Do you have trouble facing the mirror? My self-esteem and I haven’t always seen eye-to-eye. Sometimes, we’re in sync. I’ll high-five the mirror or give myself a well-deserved wink. Other days, I am sitting on the floor sulking about how hideous I look and how I never want to go outside again.
I hate to say it, but I am a party pooper. Not for your parties, my own. Social anxiety affects many facets of my life; it does not take a break on my birthday.