“By speaking my story I am adding to the erasure of that silence”
~ Jasmine Schlafke on the systematic silencing of marginalized groups
I am a woman, and Black, and diagnosed with clinical depression… and yet… I don’t feel like I have a story. I was a childhood witness to addiction and physical abuse and yet I don’t feel like that witness is enough. I survived date rape but feel like it is not something anyone would want to hear about.
I wonder sometimes how to get past all these blocks in my speech. I don’t know most days how to tell my story or if I try, it comes out so distant from myself that I feel like it is ineffective. I flip flop between wanting to just get it out and into the air, and wanting it to actually be a meaningful help to someone who has also been silent.
Perhaps the inability to tell my past is why I focus on writing my now and my future. Why I create adventure after adventure. I am fire barely controlled. I am a circus act of moderate proportions. I dance to release and sometimes control my feelings. I am a poet and painter and picture taker. I have become a Jill of all trades and a master of none. I become a slave to my own sense of being interesting to the world.
As I write this I am realizing how much I have to tell. I am nearly native to Arizona which is a state nationally notorious for it’s super right winged closed mindedness. How did I grow to be a hetero-flexible person in spite of my self chosen Christianity in a place where the conservative hierarchy makes the rules?
Maybe there is too much to tell. Will I even be able to think about all the things I could tell from before as I am preparing for the future? Once I am on my amazing journey, will I have space in my brain for organizing my many tales into something worth sharing? I honestly don’t know. I just know I have to acknowledge that I actually DO have something to say.
All I really know at this point is that I have to remember who I am at my core. I have to thank every immortal cell in my body and thank all the energy in the universe for all that I had, all I have, and all I will have. For now, that is what I do to survive this magical carpet ride of life.