10.21.2014

i don't even know myself at all, i thought i would be happy by now.


original photo

i do not know how to preface this, so i won't. this is for my secret series, for the girl who does not know how to get away from things.
sometimes you don't have to run. sometimes you have to take it step by step.
"I was clean for over a year, and everything was going great. I was beginning to understand Who I was and what made me that way, and I was really enjoying it. I felt like a new person. And then I woke up last Saturday and I knew something was wrong. I could feel it. It was back. I guess I should tell you what I mean by this: I was addicted to pornography for quite a long time. I don't remember how it happened, I just know that it did. Sometimes, I couldn't sleep at night because the urge was so strong. I couldn't look at people because I wondered what would happen if they found out and I swear I thought they would all hate me. People only talk about hypersexualized men and how their porn addictions are pretty much normal for them now, but they never mention that it can happen to girls, too. I think that was the worst part about it. That I was an outlier to the normal but I still felt so ashamed. I used to think I ruined myself for marriage and I kept promising myself I wouldn't do it anymore. But last week I heard something keep saying "you're going to do it before the end of the day. You will." I had lasted so long, and I even made a list of fun things that kept me occupied instead, but it didn't work. As you can guess, I watched porn again last Saturday. Every single thing I promised I wouldn't do. Afterward, I cried so hard. I wanted to die. And then I went to church the next morning. I just want to get as far away from last Saturday as possible, but I don't know how. This isn't how I wanted to say this, but I guess that's better than not saying anything, right? Please don't hate me too much."
a list of things to do instead of watching porn:
1. check the weather forecast for the next week. 
2. plan your outfits accordingly. 
3. do something you have done in a long time, like putting a bunch of random ingredients together and hoping they create a great meal.
4. think about how proud you are of yourself. 
5. watch something from your childhood, like the powerpuff girls or canadian dramas from the late 1980s. 
6. ask your friends what books they're reading and why you're missing out by not reading them. 
7. take all your old t-shirts out of your closet and youtube ways to restyle them.
8. or, create completely new ones instead. 
9. whatever you do, don't engage with the voice that tells you you will, you will watch porn before the day is out.
10. listen to me, i know how it feels to be on top of the world and then give into something that isn't good for you and hit rock bottom. because that is literally what it feels like and you wish you could take it back but all you can do is move forward. keep moving forward. count one day without watching porn and keep going in such a way that you allow yourself to count another one. and another. and another. and after awhile, allow yourself to forget.

because being on top of the world is so much better than being in it. and whatever you do, don't let the world be on top of you.
i love you. please don't hate yourself too much.

-kiss kiss kiss, gotta let it happen-
{pea ess: title via paramore's 'last hope' which is relevant as heq.}

10.02.2014

the honeymoon is over.

i had my first two tests of college today, and you know, they weren't that bad. i'm just really tired, and my weekend is going to be nothing less than hectic. but in a good way. i have a paper to write that i'm not writing to write this. also. i dyed my hair green, and i really like it. i'm really liking who i'm shaping up to be. this didn't make any sense. i'm tired. i need to write my paper. goodnight.

9.10.2014

sometimes, you and your siblings share quiet moments. this is one of them.

"jocee, i'm sad." but she says it with this awkward southern draw that makes it sound like 'sick' or something like that. after i decipher it to be the word 'sad,' i ask "why are you sad?" 
she says it's because these are the last few days she has of being eight. "i don't want to turn nine because that means i'll be closer to being a teenager. and i don't want to be a teenager." again: "why?" and she says "because then after that i'll have to be an adult. and i don't wanna be an adult. it's like everything is flying by so fast. first you go to elementary school, then middle school, then high school and then college! that's like four steps of school and then you have to leave home. i don't want to leave home. i want to stay in this house with mommy and daddy forever." and i told her that sometimes, i feel the same way. 

joy is turning nine on sunday and i actually don't think she wants to. 
college is going great, by the way. how are you? really?
-kiss kiss kiss, sanjay and craig-

8.30.2014

the elephant.


i wrote a new slam poem. and it's very important that it's shared. disclaimer: i realize there is language in this video, but i am only repeating what people have say to/at me. even so, not everything is gosh golly goodnesses and oopsies. sometimes it's the N word. and yes, it has been directed to me.

Talk about how your friends laugh and say oh! You scared me. It was so dark I couldn't see you. Talk about how you were one of the last people found during games of hide and seek because you were so good at hiding in your skin. Talk about how that's not right. Talk about invisibility as if it's your duty because you're tired of other black girls asking why you so bougie. Talk about the ideas you won't use in this poem because you don't think they will improve the silence that has already hollowed out your soul. It's been seventeen years and I haven't spoken up for myself once. 

I used to tell my parents stories about how at swim practice Kyle or Preston would say something stupid and I would combat it perfectly, the air becoming a chorus of "oohs" and "you just got burns" but that never happened. Usually when someone said something insulting I would crack open a smile and laugh with everyone else, putting my head down as if I were an ass submitting to its master. 

My mom and I have had several talks about how it's okay to stop a conversation to speak up and let everyone know how I feel. With each opportunity I find myself withdrawing deeper and deeper into the caverns of regret. 

You see, when I was little me and all my friends from church used to have school together at the psalmist's house. I remember bible stories with our children's church leader and twix yogurt after lunch but mostly I remember being asked "Jocelyn, why can't you colour inside the lines? Jocelyn, why don't you write with your right hand? Jocelyn, you're not funny." We were less than five years old and I had already stopped talking. One of the biggest lessons I learned in my K-12 years was that if no one respected your voice, there was no pointing in using it. 

As I got older, the questions and statements changed. "Jocelyn, you can't be First Lady of the United States that's not a real job. Jocelyn, how can you not understand that joke? Jocelyn, no one else thinks Little House On the Prairie is cool."

When my mom began training me to become a leader, one of the first things she did was teach me how to speak publicly. She made me look her in the eye and recite poems that I had written, poems from the curriculum we were using. And I hated it because she made me laugh and I hated it because I didn't want anyone to give me reason why I was not welcome, or worthy. I still get nervous talking to bank tellers, I still get nervous talking to people on the phone, I still wonder if anyone wants to hear me speak or if their silence is a tired form of being polite. 

All during my high school career the questions got louder and louder and my voice became softer and softer. I am a freshman in college now and my mom cannot hear my voice even when she is sitting in front of me. 

They ask "Jocelyn, why do you dress like that? Jocelyn, why don't you like rap music? Jocelyn, why must you act so white?" They say "Jocelyn, you can't compose music for the movies, that's what men do. Jocelyn, the only think black about you is your ashy skin. Jocelyn, you're just a knock-off nigger."

Someone once asked me why I couldn't just speak up for myself. I told them when an elephant is captured and taken from its home, the person who kidnapped it chains its feet to iron shackles at a post. No matter how hard the elephant pulls against it the skin breaks but the iron holds fast. After awhile, the master replaces the iron with a pile of rope and the elephant does not move. It is easier to be still than deepen the gashed about its ankles, it is easier to stay silent than to speak and be hurt is the process. 

"Jocelyn, why is your YouTube channel called joceeisawesome? I think that's a little conceited, don't you? Jocelyn, you remind me of the light, bright, and wannabe white people from the Tyler Perry films, you know, the ones who try to forget their roots."

I have been trying to make roots with my words but what good is that if I cannot so much as open my mouth? These wounds have been reopened so many times that no balm, no cocoa butter can heal them. 

My best friend says I'm soft-spoken. I've known her four years and she's gotten used to the lack of volume in my voice but the last time we where at camp, I expressed my annoyance about something and she jumped, saying "oh my God. I haven't heard you speak that loudly all summer."


I am seventeen years old and I have not spoken up for myself once. "Jocelyn, speak up I can't hear you. Jocelyn speak up I can't hear you Jocelyn, speak up I can't hear you. Jocelyn how do you spell that? Jocelyn I didn't expect you to have such a pretty name."

The reason I am having so much trouble sharing this with you is because when I transfer the written word to my tongue, I feel as though something is lost in translation, that if you actually listen to me you'll think it's not as serious or dramatic as I'm making it seem. But I am almost eighteen years old. If I do not speak now, I never will. 

I am not your nigga, your nigger, I am not a mat that you can just walk all over me, I do not wish to be white I wish to fulfill the promise God has placed in my life, I am a daughter of the most high who was stoned and persecuted for His words. Sticks and stones will break my bones but I will not be soft-spoken with my words anymore.
-kiss kiss kiss, ooh girl-
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