Monday, January 2, 2012

To Make A Hole In The River

"Eliza my dear, where are you going?"
"To the river"
"Whatever for?"
"To make a hole in it."
-My Fair Lady

There are just some days where I feel like making a hole in the river.

Yesterday I was in Columbus. My favorite place in the whole wide world. It felt so good, it's like I don't know but I just feel accomplished, loved, and sexy when I'm in Columbus. Maybe it was all the great experiences, maybe it's my friends, maybe it's Ohio State...I don't know. I just love it. Maybe my horrible time in Indiana makes me more nostalgic for Columbus

Zuri inquired the other day what the deal was with Columbus, Ohio and I didn't know right off the top of my head but I thought about it later, and I realized it's pretty deep. I feel in love with myself in Columbus. It's like your first love, or first kiss. You'll always remember that place, that moment. When I talk about it, it all comes out.

Walk with me for a minute...
This is me, I'm pretty sure this was 8th grade...wow right?
I mean clearly this is nothing like the woman you know.
But this is who I started out as, the ultimate ugly duckling and sometimes I go back in my head.
I was so unsure of myself, didn't know where I was going in life, who I was. It was bad. Then I made the first great transition of my life, to Phillips Temple. I began being in activities with other people who had goals, who were youth but community leaders, who excelled. I had support from youth leaders who loved me. It changed me for the better, but I wasn't there yet. I was still following a set of roles prescribed to me. It was working for me, for all intents and purposes. Life went well in high school, except for a few minor hiccups. I had dealt with most of my issues from childhood and expanded my male circle of trust outward to more than just my grandfather, and my youth leaders were a major part of that. I also had amazing mentors, specifically Janelle , Ms. Taylor, and Aunt Shalohm who were successful and invested in my life.
So...with a little work. I became this:
My youth pastor and I at my high school graduation.
But I wasn't me...I didn't know who I was, to even be able to love myself fully. 
Then I went to Columbus... I think the process started with Mount. There was so many activities that
(though they were silly on surface..like Meyers-Briggs) made you start thinking about who you were, how you operate, why you make decisions. People warned me before college that there were so many things that could make you lose yourself, and I totally found it was the opposite. The million things that I could've gotten into made me choose carefully. When you've only got three options, it's easy. When you have a million, you're a little bit more decisive, and that's what happened. The most rebellious thing I did was get a tattoo, lol. I found a group of friends that literally shared their spirits with me. Not just their lives, not just their time, their very hearts, the essence of themselves. I never had to be careful, or watch what I said, or watch my back. They had it. I still free fall within those friendships. I finally found out who I was, and fell in love with her, as imperfect as she was. I was secure enough to even chop off my hair, which had been an important part of my identity..didn't even bat an eyelash about it. 

So I was riding out of Ohio with a degree and a boat load of confidence...then Indiana happened. I remember the first time I almost couldn't make it to the car without crying and I think it was further indicative of my future experiences. I really didn't know anyone and I had just met the members of the BGSA, but we weren't really cool, I didn't know them then (don't feel some type of way about this story). So I took myself to the movies to see "For Colored Girls" and like five minutes in to the movie this group of people come in, loud I might add, and sit behind me, after a few more times I hear them I recognize the voices...I look behind me and it's the WHOLE of BGSA. I mean everybody. In that moment I had never felt so alone in my life. They coordinated a group outing, and I was not on the invite list. I wanted to get up before the movie was over. It ruined the experience of seeing that movie for me. Ruined it. I said hi to them after the movie, jetted to my car, and cried. My job was stressing me out, I was away from my friends and family, my roommate was just...and on top of that I wasn't on the invite list. Thank GAWD Ta-Seti answered the phone and calmed me ALL the way down. If there was a river that I knew about, def would've made a hole in it that day. Muncie continued like that...I lost my virginity to someone I loved, and I've known forever and who I also knew it wouldn't work out with. I still can't explain why I did it, and it's just one more thing I left in Indiana. I honestly felt like I was losing myself in Indiana. Thank God for research, it gave me purpose. I was doing something well and I got tunnel vision about it, that's all I focused on and it kept me. Then to top it all off my friend dies. I left Indiana with few concessions.
Now I'm here...
I'm putting Indiana behind me and putting my energies on the future, and not a bad year and a half. I'm so grateful it was confined to that and I made it out with few scars. 
If my life is like a roller coaster...I think that Ohio State was waiting in line with excitement and anticipation, Muncie was the super scary part going up the incline, and that after this will be the thrill of going down the biggest hill, with little dips and more rushes going down...let us all hope :)




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