Saturday, September 14, 2013

I'm Coming Out

            Today I am coming out of the closet. I am a Feminist. I have known for a long time, I had feminist tendencies, but as I am starting my new life, I feel like it’s time to make it official.
I was raised by a Canadian Mother and a Ghanaian Father, I am the eldest of six kids. My parents instilled in me confidence, and I learned that my gender and my color did not define me.  My parents would probably never define themselves as feminist, but they really are.  I was raised to believe that everyone was equal, and that was just how the world worked.
            When I turned fifteen I moved to Walla Walla, Washington.  This is where I first realized that not all people were treated the same –and the world was not like the family I was in which I was raised.  It was expected of me to go to BYU-Idaho, find my soul mate in September, get married in December and be pregnant by April. While this was the ideal for many people that I knew in that small town, this did not fit with what I wanted for my life.
            I went to BYU and it solidified what I already knew, that I am different. Each day I realized with more clarity how different I was then the majority of female students there the problem was, the longer I was there the more I wanted to be like them—those girls with the long blond ponytails, and perfect complexions.
It’s hard to describe why I even cared, I’m not sure I've processed it all yet. All I knew is that I would never have a long blond ponytail (and by long blonde ponytail I mean the perfect outfit, the perfect boyfriend, the perfect figure and the “perfect” color) there was a yearning within me for something greater.
You know it’s amazing what television can do.  Specifically what Doctor Who can do. Mock me all you want too the Doctor is amazing. He takes these women, and shows them the world, and each woman reacts differently. Some fall in love with him, some leave him, and some depart his company due to circumstances beyond their.  Each of these women do great things. One creates an organizations that protect the world, one got married, and one course of history by turning left.  They were different sizes, different colors, and beautifully unique.  As I experienced Doctor Who, I saw what women could be. I saw the potential I had within me, and I saw that a man, even the greatest man, cannot define who I am. And that is when I started to seek out people who think like me.
Long story short, I am a feminist. I am feminist because gender does not define ability.  I am a feminist because I want my children to grow up in the world where culture does not define what they want to be.  I am a feminist because I believe woman can chose to become anything.

“I used to bite my tongue and hold my breath; scared to rock the boat and make a mess so I sat quietly, agreed politely. I  guess I forgot I had a choice, I let you push me past my breaking point, I stood for nothing, so I fell for everything.  You held me down, but I got up, already brushing off the dust, you held me down, but I got up, get ready cause I’ve had enough. I got the eye of the tiger, a fighter, dancing through the fire, cause I am a champion and you’re going to hear me ROAR”

Friday, September 13, 2013


Chaos, is a funny thing, people everywhere try so hard to avoid it. People go to such extremes to get out of chaotic events, and I am the opposite, I cherish it.  Anyone who knows my family knows that we thrive in chaos.  With eight people in my family, there is always SOMETHING going on. We are loud, and over the top. We cry loud, we laugh loud, and we love loud!  In my house someone, is always touching you, with their sticky fingers, or yelling to close to your ears or spilling their sandwich crumbs down your shirt. It sounds crazy and maybe a little uncomfortable at first, my family welcomes everyone and loves everyone. When I was in High School our house always had a guest in it, granted it was normally one of my friends from high school, but our door was always open.  My friends just walked in, and my mom always made enough dinner to ensure that if a guest stopped by, or if we found a homeless person we wanted to invite for dinner, they had a spot and a meal.  I love it, I love the chaos of my house, I love walking in and seeing toys strewn all over the floor, the backpacks of all of our friends strewn across the floor, and the ten or twelve ramen packets by the stove, because it was Wednesday, and that is what my mom would let us eat. Our house always had crumbs on the counter,  a towel on the floor in the bathroom, and a lot of loud singing. We had a holes in our walls (cough* nick* cough),  and you could guarantee that you would find food somewhere it shouldn’t be (like the entertainment center, seriously Eliza!)

As my family gets older, and we move away from the sticky fingers, and the babies climbing all over us I find myself missing those moments of chaos. Where Eliza was drawing on me with her chocolate covered fingers, while Bonnie “braided” my hair, and Jonathan and Jeremy argued about Pok√©mon in my ears. That little bit of chaos that was so fleeting is gone now, replaced by silly kisses, loud laughter at the dinner table over something Justin said, and the occasional drama from our “brain tumors”.  I love the chaos in my life, without it; there would be too much silence, to many moments that aren’t filled with true joy.

This is why I love Portland.  I love sitting and having chaos around me. I love the loud people, the crazy people, and the sheer noise. It makes me think of home.  I love feeling like things are just barely under control.   I love that people are welcome to be whoever they are, the good, and the bad. I love that for once in my life I don’t stand out as the loudest, or the craziest, just like at home. Everyone has their own chaos within them, and together we create a hive, each world briefly touching as we pass one another.  A look, a smile, or a shared eye roll, we each interact with each other contributing the each other’s chaotic world. I think it is a beautiful thing.  Silence and stillness has a place within each person, but it is chaos that brings me alive.

Saturday, August 10, 2013

I Love You Like a Love Song, Baby.

Today was my last full day in Provo. I wasn't expecting this to come so fast, yet here I sit in my nearly empty half of my half of the room,  after tomorrow I will have no house, and as of yesterday at 1 PM I had no job. I just can't believe it. I just spent a wonderful day running errand, annoying, and laughing with a person who once was a stranger who I didn't want to be friends with because I was determined to hate Utah. Today I just want to publicly thank her for truly being the best roommate, and friend I could have ever have.
Sarah and I wereroomies in the terrible yet forever memorable Penrose 89. I like to believe that she and I had an instant connection because we are both from Washington ( opposite corners), but really I think it was just because we both couldn't handle the crazy b-ness of some of our dear roommates (none of whom I now speak to naturally).

Sarah is and was my greatest beacon of hope in Utah, together we forged a path that included fatty foods( CHOCOLATE DOMES FOR THE WIN!!!) and lots of slightly inapropro movies (okay for Utah at least).  
With Sarah I feel like I can be myself, which while I lived in Utah was not easy to say about many people. She is just so kind and loving that it is hard not to feel comfortable around her, not to mention she has a wicked sense of humour, and honestly I don't go a day without her making me laugh out loud, often with tears involved because she is just so damn funny. 

When I had my mental breakdown Freshman year, Sarah was there the whole time, letting me know that it was okay that I kept crying, and constantly supplying good movies and way to much Creamery ice cream (really why do they put them so close to Freshman housing!?) She put up with Doctor Who, the crying at anything, and was always willing to drag me out of bed so that I would make our tap class on Tuesdays and Thursday (which some weeks were the only classes I went to) She stood by me, always a rock and always so kind and gentle, but giving me the kick in the pants I needed to suck it up. 
Sarah has been my saviour and I am so sad to leave her, she has become and essential part of my life. I love waking up every morning to her phone going of three times (Doom,Horror, and Death), and our nearly naked Fridays (okay that never happened but whatever). I will miss our bejewbom meetings (okay that only happened once but we will always be bejewbom sisters). And just being with her even when we aren't doing anything but groaning like David After the Dentist because we are so bored. 
She is like the white twin sister that I never had.  I will miss watching movies with her, stressing out about crap together, driving around, eating domes. I will miss pointless target runs, singing horrible at the top of our lungs to all sorts of mass produced pop crap ( SOMEBODY!!!!!!) doing the dance of my people, and just the constant laughter that I have had for the last two years.
Sarah  I love you! I love you I love you I love you! Thank you, thank you so much for being there for me when I felt abandoned. Thank you for making me laugh,and for letting me cry. Thank you for singing sexy back, awkward dancing, and crawling into my bed when i just needed someone (in a totally non-weird way).  I will miss the home we built together, and letting me know that when I get home I will have someone there for me! 

Ah!! I am crying and hiding it from you because you're sitting in the room! Thank you Muffin Jiggly Puff Alice the Snot-Nosed Monkey King Kong McGrip McCarrey, for being the best roommate anyone anywhere has ever had in the history of the world. You are my favorite part of Utah and my BYU experience and the part I will miss the absolute most. Thank you for being my Goonie forever, and the only person I would ever truffle shuffle for!