…Isn’t going to happen this time. The final vestige of a long road has dissipated into the wind. A chapter is closed. It’s unfortunate and jarring but not wholly unexpected. But, this is life and there is no cinematic Hollywood ending.
For the most part everything has happened easily. Yes, I’m 6’2”. Yes, I ended up in private school with a bunch of people I didn’t really know and barely had any close friends in high school. But that being said, the last harrowing chapter of my life ended in 2000. Sure, there have been some minor set-backs (see below if you’re curious). But for the most part my adult life had been smooth sailing. I’d worked my butt off in school and all other areas of my life. In return for my hard work I was rewarded with: an athletic scholarship to USC, two back-to-back well-paying prestigious law firm jobs, the opportunity to live in cities all over the country, fun and diverse friendships, two back-to-back stable, healthy and loving multi-year relationships with two very different men. It was a good story. It was a stable story. It was a safe story. My current reality, in early 2014 and staring my 32nd birthday in the face, is nowhere near good, stable or safe.
In talking to my mother about my blog, she suggested I take a stab at a mixture of lifestyle content in addition to “overly-emotional-journaling”. I have to agree with her. I have been so overwhelmed by the response to the blog but I also have a suspicion that people are worried about my mental health. The content of the blog thus far has been very heavy but not by design. Frankly, I had a good number of personal stories piled up and if read in succession my life sounds miserable. But don’t despair. Despite all the professional and personal upheaval of the past year, my life isn’t all bad. Trust me. Continue reading
Throughout my life, I’ve had the normal female body issues. Nothing too obsessive. I’ve lamented my thighs. I’ve counted calories. I complained about empire dresses not fitting my body type. Being 6’2”, I’ve often whined about the lack of pants options. But, I’ve never particularly obsessed or even been acutely aware of my body as a black female. Personally, I find this an amazing feat since I went to college in Los Angeles and was surrounded on campus and in the city by petite, skinny, and pretty blondes every day. However, I never felt intimidated. Admittedly, I felt awkward when I first arrived on campus but mostly due to a bad wardrobe and the unruly un-arched eyebrows. Once I waxed my eyebrows and found the mall, I wandered through the streets of the City of Angels with confidence and happiness.
I’ve dated guys outside my race before and never thought much about how they perceived my Black body. I had never feared that they were exoticizing my body or our relationship. I’ve realized that all my past non-black boyfriends came from middle class families and I had knowledge that they had either dated or at least hooked up with women outside their race before. For these guys I wasn’t a test case. I wasn’t a line item on a bucket list. I was simply a normal human girl who they wanted to date. I was never self-conscious about my body as a black female until I dated my last boyfriend. Continue reading
In an article in yesterday’s Wall Street Journal, James Taranto explored what he calls a “balanced look at college sex offenses”. Without outlining the entire article, the main point of Taranto’s op-ed is that women should be held equally accountable for sexual assaults involving intoxication. The consistent undertone of this article is the fear of false accusations and the ruining of young men’s lives. Taranto’s main thesis is that if a man and woman are both intoxicated and the man sexually assaults the woman that they are both, in fact, equally at fault. Taranto explained that:
“If two drunk drivers are in a collision, one doesn’t determine fault on the basis of demographic details such as each driver’s sex. But when two drunken college students “collide,” the male one is almost always presumed to be at fault.”
Last time I checked women do not possess the biological parts to collide into a man but that’s beside the point. Shitty analogy aside, Taranto’s main point is clear.
I decided to share the blog and the response has been very positive. I’ve been doing a lot of thinking about sharing the following story because it’s a large part of my journey and feels like the missing puzzle piece. I think the story explains my emotional journey over the past five years. I had contemplated sharing the story anonymously or publishing it on a different website. I’ve thought about sharing this story for years but I’ve held back due to shame and fear of judgment. I’ve reached a point in my life where I feel that sharing the story will help me move through the trauma and lift a weight from my life. I feel compelled to share the story now more than ever. With all that has happened in the past year, I feel more destabilized than ever and, oddly, I feel more in control of my life, my feelings, and my emotions when I write and share my story. I wrote the following a few months ago and have sat on it for a while. I’m ready to finally put it out there and move on:
They say “write what you know”. So what DO I know? I know about failed relationships and being tall. There is only so much you can say about being tall. Each day someone asks me if I play basketball and it’s hard to find pants that are long enough. There is only so much I can say about my height but there is plenty to say about my relationship epic fails. Continue reading