I am a true migrant at heart. Any possible uncertainties a journey might present, I consider opportunities to experience something new.
My Social Shock Confession
Yes! It happens. Sometimes students will feel like a misfit or an outsider in High School. In fact, it was in Junior High when those feelings of being an outsider and misfit hit me. At our school, the girls, who lived in town, were the popular girls, and the girls who lived in the rural area of our school district were considered the misfit, outsider, and unpopular ones
Reflecting On My Failure
Author's note: This article was rejected in its first submission for "graphic content" This new and improved version is certified graphic content free and fully suitable for Vocal's audience of impressionable youths who would certainly have been horrified and offended at the original version. I have also cleaned up the language. Who needs all those nasty swear words anyway? Not me. No sir. Not me.
Invisible and Faceless
Reposted, with minor edits, from a January 25th, 2014 post on my personal blog Happy Occidents. "I am sorry, I can't help", she says sliding my tax forms across the table.
I thought you were supposed to feel elation. The deepest form of love in the human experience. Beauty and magic. A biological miracle. But I didn’t feel any of those emotions. I felt fear. From the moment I watched Star Wars, and Padme died in childbirth, I quaked at the thought of ever falling pregnant. The thought of pushing an eight-pound baby out of my body made me sick to my stomach. I felt embarrassed. Growing up in a conservative Catholic household, pregnancy was supposed to happen strictly between husband and wife. If you weren’t bound by the sanctity of marriage, it was an abomination. Even my entirely pro-life father suggested abortion. Like he wanted me to get one. I didn’t. I felt alone. Though half of the world has the opportunity to go through this experience, I had no one to talk to about it. Between my parent’s disappointment and the fact that I was twenty-one and unmarried, no one understood why I would want to “give up my youth”. I didn’t seem like the type to ever have children. And I wasn’t. And I didn’t want to. I needed to.
I will never forget the one summer with myself, I flew to Georgia. At first, I felt like I didn’t fit in because, after always being used to fitting in a certain way…. and always feeling accepted in… the was a new awakening!!!!! Having always been, “heavily supported,” I was thinking the day I arrived I’d be well taken care of! Not! It was a HUGE warning regarding my race, was my first impression?! At first I thought I was up against my own worst, “ enemy”!!! It was my cousins new fiancé Joey. The year was 2001. So I was visiting Georgia. Georgia is my home state supposively. I was born there. This was all a wrap when I went there one summer!!!!! I was eager and more than excited at first to see my cousins!! Plus my aunt and uncle. Everybody was one happy family again. The only Problem was the credentials and entitlement the fiancé was getting?! Fighting had occurred frequently between me and him. We hated one another’s company by a long shot. It was too way different backgrounds trying to settle in the middle, at the same time! What bothered me was left unsaid. Basically I was repping a city like lifestyle with a ton of “ghettoness,”and tainted expression smothering me which at the time led to The Country Lifestyle! I wasn’t excited about it one bit. We hated each other’s guts. I didn’t fit in because I was black, by now I could tell, it was because he was white, and in the South, and they I’ve learned don’t play that mess. I would get hung he’d always say. It would bother me…and toil inside of me a lot. Enraged in anger. As I hold on growing up in Spanaway Washington, which is country to me…I start to grow a tougher skin, but I realize by now he Joey was from a wholeness of avenue, which since then I come to terms with! It’s hard to do, but I put myself through understanding to get to that point. This being a time, I didn’t fit in!!!! It helped mme to see myself in a different light.Back then,…. I had young ghetto mentality I want to say… and a terrible poverty mindset. Not to justify how I fitted in,which still needs work, until this day,..I would change where I have lost views, a load of friends, but it was all for the better! Anyways back to not fitting in. I felt bad! Here it is this (newby) was getting attention that I was not getting????? I felt the pressure each time I encountered him. We hated each other’s guts and for the first time I felt out of place. I know now, but ( Joey) would say things to piss me off or make foolery out of me! Some of the summer…and my cousins redemptions were in return treating me I’ll,I felt change had occur, to look at things for the better! My cousin Nikki was awesome, and what started out being the worst summer and me having the bad feelings of not fitting in took its FULL toll on me! So, I ended up enjoying it, maybe even crushing on (Joey), it was the best summer ever, ever spent! What had went from wrestling matches between us two turnover for the better! The things that I’d never encountered like…. 4 wheelin, dancing with him, & taking memorable photos, grew our relationship to taps! We’re cool now, but before then we just wasn’t. Since then…I’ve had my full rounds about the South. It’s harder living down there , then up here in Washington State. Every state has an exciting thing about it. My cousin Nikki and Joey, now have kids and I believe he is to this day, trying to become a better man. For me I am working on retiring, but leaving that door open for better new and improved beginnings.
I was diagnosed with the foot-in-mouth disease as a toddler. While no one is exactly sure what the root causes are for this illness, parental experts speculate that it may be genetic. Perhaps passed down by a garrulous great-grandfather or a chatty grandmother, the child is compared to when the disorder rears its ugly head. What exactly is foot-in-mouth disease? Well, let me break it down for you.
9 Years Long Ballet
Social embarrassment is basically my cardio at this point. Just the other day, I fully introduced myself to a random guy at work. I assumed he was doing a trial shift, so I went: "Hi, I'm Marcel. It's so nice to meet you! What's your name?" The poor guy looked at me a bit terrified. When I realized he was a stranger about to pick up some carton boxes, I cringed my way up the stairs in silence. But that is nothing!
A Fish Out of Water
A Fish out of Water Not a Social Butterfly by any means Floundering during social occurrences was always second nature to me. I remember my very first instance of landing flat on my face in public. I was a freshman in college just graduating from high school that summer. It didn't help that I was shy, afraid, and new to all things socially relevant. When I appeared in the public eye, I kept my textbooks close to my breast. They acted as shields between me and other people. I never ventured out into the world of the college campus until this day. This day, I wanted more than cheese peanut butter crackers and cola from the machine. I had an early class at 8:00 a.m. and my next class wasn't until 3 p.m. It was a Monday morning, and I was eager to continue studying for a Social Studies exam later that afternoon. I needed more nourishment. The only time I stepped out of Holmes Hall was to go to my gym class. I had a swimming class on Tuesdays and Thursdays. All my other classes were near Holmes Hall. I had no need to venture across the bridge that day because I had no gym classes. I have no idea why I decided to break all my rules. All the rules news that kept me bottled inside my box of social assuredness. Because I would be assured that I could avoid a social faux pas if I stayed within the confines of my rules. My stomach was growling, and I knew peanut butter and cheese crackers would not do. I had gone to bed without dinner because I was so exhausted from studying all Sunday for my three o’clock social Studies class. I gathered up my frightened body and walked purposefully to the front entrance of Holmes Hall. I was determined to go to the Canteen. The social hangout of the college. Keep in mind the only time I'd ever been to the Canteen was well come to think of it I had never been there. I wondered if I could even get there without directions. I could never ask for directions because that would make me the most foolish person on earth let alone the college campus of Morgan State University. I walked across the bridge and glanced up at the clock situated in front of the building. Could I do this? I don't know. Surely, everybody in the canteen would be occupied with eating studying or maybe even resting, listening to music from the jukebox. You could always hear music playing from the jukebox. No one will be paying attention to me. I looked down at my plaid jumper and scout why did I wear this today. I looked like a child in elementary school. white button-down blouse. it was awful I looked like adult of rag doll. You can do this. All you need to do is fit in. They're all like you. Everybody in the canteen is either hungry, relaxing, talking, or studying. In fact, they are socializing on their breaks in between classes, and they won't even notice you. I walk in and I guess. These people are not my people. Look at the girls. They have beautiful blow out Afros and are wearing jeans and sandals. Some of them have jewelry studded headbands and are wearing their hair in two braids. They look so casual and comfortable. I have on black and whites and am wearing a green sweater with green buttons. I am carrying four books…three textbooks and a big loose-leaf notebook. I don't belong. I can't walk any further. No one's looking at me but no one's smiling either. And my stomach is still growling. I'm sure the whole place has heard it now but I'm not sure because the music's very loud. I hear a lot of chatter, a lot of laughter and there are some students sleeping and others cuddling in the corners of the canteen. All I need to do, is walk with some confidence to the counter and order. I'll just get a hamburger and fries. I can do this. Remember no one's paying attention to you. all you have to do is fit in. You are the same age. You're all here for the same thing. You're a grown-up college student getting ready to order a hamburger and some fries. Nobody cares about you. They have their own lives. Who knows maybe you can spot someone who's in one of your classes? That would be the answer. Find somebody who has the same interests you do. I don’t see anybody I know. Okay, get your food and find a seat. Good. I see an empty table. Now sit down and eat your food and go. You can do this. The sounds of the music, laughter, and chatter has enveloped you. You barely hear the voice that asks, is it okay if I sit at your table? You look up and smile. Yes. You push aside your textbooks, please have a seat. Are you ready for the test? I think I am, but after we eat maybe we can study together. Hey, that’s good, I was so afraid that I almost didn’t come inside. Maybe one day I’ll be as bold as you were. I smiled and said. Yeah, I think you already are. Would you like some fries?
Growing In Florida or Not
When the dust settled there was the fat girl and me. We stood in the didn’t get picked line. The teacher would point and say, “Shorty Jan go with the yellow team and Zelda, you’re on the red.” Just like that each team got a member that was like the plague. They were competitive and I was not a strong competitor. The looks were coming at me like machine gun fire.
You'd think that growing up in a trailer park where my best friend's stepdad was the neighborhood meth dealer would have left me less sheltered. Still, somehow my innocent eyes made it through childhood and past high school. Maybe it was a willful ignorance, who knows. Do you remember those brightly colored silicone wristbands with encouraging phrases on them? When I was little, those bracelets were the highest fashion. Yellow, blue, fuchsia, tangerine...all colors of the rainbow. As poor as my family was growing up, we rarely got any of those fancy wristbands, common as they are. Any time I saw one free for the taking, my child-heart leap with joy.
I don't have many friends. I never have. It's not that I'm an unlikeable person, as far as I know (though plenty of people have taken against me for reasons I could never quite fathom). For me it's always been the crippling embarrassment caused by social situations. To me, a party is hell.