It's been a rough few months and March and April usually are for me. From the birthday and the death of my grandmother, who I loved dearly and respected as a mentor to the driving death of my cousin 13 years ago to finally the acidic bitter pill of justice denied in the 10th year of my brother's murder going unsolved. I am indeed starting out this blog in a bad place. Every time I have sat down to write I have stopped after only a few words because there was just no positivity coming through these fingers. Now, after running from the darkness desperately for the last three months I am finally beaten, exhausted, and willing to accept that I need to express myself regardless of whether there is sunshine and smiles or tears and rage. It just needs to come out and if I don't have a release then I am going t slip away.
I straightened my hair for the first time in about three years. At first I thought it was great and I enjoyed the positive reaction I got but at the end of two weeks I started remembering the reason I went natural in the first damn place. While I initially wanted to cut it all off after the first week in rebellion I had to stop and think about it. As mentioned previously, this is also the reason I am obese. Along that train of thought, this is not healthy. That leaves me with feelings of confusion. Is it me because I can't take a compliment or I see them as back handed? Is it everyone else's misconception of beauty? Is it the fact I need to look to focus more or less on what people think to obtain my goals? In the one hand I enjoy being treated like a lady, particularly by guys. I have had more guys hit on me with my long flowing hair than when I was 100lbs lighter with my short natural locks. Really? What about my hair is so much more appealing? Do we as blacks really hate ourselves so much? Are we so programmed? I think of my cousin Keisha and her choice to be natural for years now and I think of my godchild Kat. I even think of the daughter I have yet to give life to and may never. Should I teach her to love herself from the inside to her naturally African American self or should I program her into a more commercialized, Anglo-Saxon version that the world can praise her for? I can't speak for every black girl. I can't speak for every impressionable girl, I can only reflect as a biracial child, seeking...needing a place to fit. When I think of ideal beauty I think of my grandmother Mary w/o a stitch of make-up, compact and neat, always looking like she owned the place. She could go deaconess chic or bingo granny slumming and whatever the look she was gorgeous in my eyes. I never saw her hair past her shoulder but always combed no mater the occasion. I appreciate texture in our women's hair. I think it is one of God's greatest creations and yet we torture it straight, chemically saturate it until it is too confused to do anything, let alone grow and in the end will probably just fall out. Yet I realize in these last few weeks, if I just submit, and play the game, opportunities for the greater good abound.
I initially started writing this on April 24th and it is now April 25th and I have been approved for Gastric Sleeve surgery. My surgery date is May 11, 2012. The moment is bitter sweet because there has never been a time in my life where food was not a constant stress reliever, source of joy, and sometimes friend where the rest of the world has failed me. I am programmed to look to food to solve all my problems and very abruptly, in two weeks time that will be snatched away from me. Hopefully for life but whether I choose to follow my diet or not at least 6 months. I am both excited to see my clavicle after all these years and frightened that after all this I'm still going to be that same old fat girl asking myself "Now what Tish?". I am a natural introvert who boarders on being autistic which is where I believe I get my creative side from. I would rather hole up in my house for the rest of my life reading my books, typing my blogs, watching episodes of Vamp Diaries, True Blood, and Dexter than to go window shopping, or on a date, or even to hang out at someone else's house. Social awkwardness doesn't even begin to cover it folks. When I felt uncomfortable there are two fail safes and one of them was food. I ask that the Lord and all of my friends who have shown nothing but support for me continue to encourage me towards healthier habits and healthier outlets for my "awkwardness". Particularly now that I have to say goodbye to an old friend. Until next time friends.
The One and Only,