The Anti-Speech, Speech
I have been thinking more and more about the panel I’m going to be speaking on in a few weeks.
I’ve been thinking about being a young woman and having high expectations for my life and no limits.
The older I become, the more limited I often feel.
I always use the example of teaching babies to swim or how to play an instrument or anything really, in comparison to adults. Kids have no fears, no hangups. Kids often don’t know what they can’t do, because they don’t have a proven record of failing. And even when they did fail at something, most kids often have a parent or loved one simply saying, it’s ok, try again.
As adults, we get prideful. We don’t want anyone to see when we make a mistake, especially if other people around us seem to be catching on, or sailing along.
Today, if I gave a speech, I’d say, some days you feel shitty.
Some days, you could have almost everything, but the one thing you don’t have haunts you and sits on your heart like an elephant on your chest.
I’m upset today, because I have no real reason to be upset.
There was a period of time, where if you read this blog, you know I was struggling.
The root of my depression was losing love, losing a man.
I don’t have one, and I’m unhappy because I haven’t found the right one yet. I feel time slipping away, and I want to share my life with someone.
Some days, I’m so angry being a black woman. I see inequality, or I see people who will never understand my life, or the barriers in my life, who will dislike me, or think I am inferior, simply because of how I’m packaged and it infuriates me.
I get angry at other black people, because I worked hard and I want them to do the same too. I don’t want to be embarrassed by people trying to live like characters in television or music, who seem not to care about community or respect.
I told a friend the other day that I refuse to believe the world is 90 percent ratchet and 10 percent rational.
Ratchet people just get all the attention, like the bad kids who disrupt class. They need more attention, and get it in bad ways because…they need more attention. Attention of any kind is and will forever still.be.something.
Women who sleep with a bunch of men.
Men who have to talk loudly.
People who are rude.
This is the world in which we live.
Sometimes there is no tangible, right now instant gratification for doing the right thing, or for soldiering on quietly when inside you are about to explode with rage or even deep sadness.
As I get older, I feel like I FEEL even more.
I’m too aware of my emotions. I know my emotions like they are my non-rent paying, food-eating roommates.
At least now, I tell people more often that I love them and I point out the things I like about them.
I think it makes them feel good. And that makes me feel good.
I cling, live and survive off of people, who I know will give me an encouraging word. Does that make me needy? Maybe.
But as I said before, I’m so aware of my needs and myself now that it’s scary. It’s like walking around naked all of the time. It’s like knowing you are vulnerable and there is nothing you can do about it.
I can’t even lie to myself anymore.
I want to have sex. I’ve been feeling that way all week, but I cannot bring myself to lay down with any of my old “friends” because they aren’t worth it, and I know what feeling I’ll have afterwards because it’s not real. It’s not the way I really want to “have sex.”
I’m in a weird place right now. Horribly aware.
But maybe I’m closer to where I’m supposed to be in some strange way. Even the being so aware in what I’m feeling is a massive improvement from just being depressed and totally unhappy and barely feeling at all.
I’ll get myself together by the panel. I’m always ready for showtime when it comes.
I will tell those girls that it’s ok not to have it together all the time. Your definition of success will change. And on those days you don’t feel good about yourself surround yourself with good things, good music, good food, good exercise.
Do not go on Facebook. Do not compare yourselves to the PR pages folks have made for themselves.
Rejoice with others in their success. Never, ever use energy to be angry about good fortune in a person’s life. Those things are so fleeting. Let them have their moment. You don’t know what came before it and you don’t know what’s coming after.
Praise other people. Lift them up. Expose their gifts and remind them of it. Don’t be the type of person who can’t give others compliments.
I sent a talented friend an email. We hadn’t spoken in ages. I told her how much I appreciated her talents and gifts and was so glad to have her in my life. I felt my heart open up and tears well in my eyes.
I was thankful to have the connection with that person, that despite not speaking in a while, having them in my heart could make me feel that way. I thanked her for that too.
You don’t realize how many walls can come down with a single compliment.
Look back at your own accomplishments. Take time to reflect on it.
I know I am always thinking, what’s next? How do I outdo myself? That’s all well and good, but never discount or forget the moments in your life that made you feel proud. You are still that same person, and you will do it again.
(I’m really telling myself this now. I’m going to repeat it to myself. “You are still that same person, you will do/feel it again.”)