Okay, first and foremost, this was my first ever trip abroad and I was well aware of the major cultural differences between America and Asian countries before embarking on this one. Having said that, I still don’t know if I was completely prepared for it all.
Being a black girl at my high school was a very strange experience for many different reasons. For the first couple of years I barely had any other black friends and therefore spent most of my time feeling like I couldn’t express my blackness. The remainder of my time there was weird in a different kind of way. I no longer felt out-of-place expressing my blackness, but I couldn’t stand up to those that disrespected it. Either way I felt like I was compromising on something too important to just give up on.
You can be beautiful, but make sure to never boast
and if you aren’t, do not vocalize the pain; do not cry, do not post.
If you wish to live a life that will be rejected by those you love most;
recede into yourself. Become shapeless, lifeless. A shell or a ghost.
If conformity is a dagger that your heart surrounds and bleeds onto
and eradication means certain death or a life of obscurity you cannot undo,
then remain. Content and in excruciating pain with every breath that comes into you.
There is nothing left. A pseudo life; not nearly enough. But will suffice until death is due.
So I’m on that kind of college-student, who supports herself with a low paying part-time job kind of budget. The little money I receive from family helps out with food and toilet paper and things like that. But that doesn’t leave a lot of money for the most important thing! CLOTHES!!
I woke up today and, against my better judgement, started scrolling down social media sites on my phone. I have a ton of photos and videos from my China trip that I have never posted and decided to post one. After doing that, I spent another half hour looking at each photo and video and reminiscing on the experience. I learned two things; the first being that I absolutely loved being there and would do just about anything to go back to China right now and that travelling is probably the most important thing to me.
Sometimes it can be so difficult to remain present. To remain alert and actively involved. For most people in my generation, the current status of the country (and the world) is probably the most difficult thing we’ve had to deal with. So far anyway. We learned about the depressing years from the past and how our grandparents and great-grandparents eventually rose from them. But no one ever talked about the mental toll that these things take. The history books never told us how to deal with these issues on a personal level.
Time spent foreseeing
the future is time wasted.
Is there a future?
Oh this world, this hell.
Bleak and Black and Weary and White
Too pure for this world.
Because the universe is so expansive and our minds are so vast, we’ve found a multitude of ways to express the ever changing range of emotions that is every human being.
I’ve found that sometimes writing a long essay to express something doesn’t always work for me, that maybe a short poem or a Haiku is a better way to articulate my feelings. I’ve never been able to sing, but certain musicians have the ability to relay my feelings into song in a way I’d never be able to. And that’s a real tragedy, because I think I’d make an excellent song writer.
But there are people who can pick up a variety of tools to express their feelings. Actors who can also paint. Singers who write poetry ( which is basically song writing depending on the artist). Dancers who double as photographers. And so on and so forth.
My point is, intersections exist and should be celebrated. Not solely in the arts but in every aspect of life. Creatives should be encouraged to draw upon inspiration from any and everything and transfer their response to whichever medium they find most appropriate.
The world is so large and so diverse; why shouldn’t we allow our minds and our work to be just as interesting.
Remember to be
kind, they said. Especially
to yourself. But how?