"1) Learn to put on your bracelets and zip up your dresses by yourself. There will be times when you will be alone.
2) Get on a long plane ride. Look out the window. Understand the immensity of our world. Understand your insignificance. Understand your absolute importance.
3) Press the send button. If you don’t say it now, you never will.
4) Do not sneer at happiness or roll your eyes at sadness. Be aware that apathy is not healthy.
5) You are more than the amount of people who want to have sex with you.
6) That pit in your stomach when he doesn’t text you back, it shouldn’t be there. No one should be able to control you like that.
7) Shopping is cathartic. Buy the shoes and deal with one-ply toilet paper for a while.
8) It will get better, but it will never be perfect. Learn to live through the small moments of happiness. When they disappear, remember they will resurface.
9) I promise that cookie will not change anything (except that it will make you smile).
10) Please, please, take care of yourself. You are everything to somebody. You are everything to your self. That alone is enough."
Why is it that culture is only innovative and worth discussing before a grand audience after it has been appropriated? Remember that article about the science of twerking? When I was a kid Black girls were being told they were “fast” for twerking at recess. Miley Cyrus does it on MTV and now it’s some marvellous thing they need to dissect and understand. This Christopher Columbus approach is such a problem. Recently VOGUE published an article about big butts being trendy. Remember when they sacrificed Sarah Baartman (and other African women) for science? Her body was considered abnormal and was therefore put on display as a paid attraction. She was considered wild and savage-like for her features, and even after death her body parts were still for public consumption. There are many hardships associated with being a Black woman, but I find erasure to be one of the toughest parts. Our bodies are not trends. (And not just Black bodies, bodies in general are not trends.) The same things they shun us for, the same things they call ghetto, unacceptable, disgusting, savage-like, unfit, insubordinate are brand new and cool now that they can be Whiter. And sure, they mentioned a few obligatory Black women but not in depth, not historically, and essentially not without sexualization. We’re discouraged from being openly sexual but our prowess is duplicated and profited from across the globe. Why is it that we’re never invited to the table of discussion? Why is it that our flesh is only worthy soaked in bleach?
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