brilliance and resilience

I just finished Yaa Gyasi’s Transcendent Kingdom

well, I finished it, sat in silence for a few minutes, and then I sent a text saying “it made me feel a lot of feelings. it wasn’t instant, but I want to cry.”

but I didn’t cry. I got up and put on Raury’s All We Need album, Trap Tears specifically. I listened to it twice before letting the album move on, chopping okra and thinking of this post the whole time, building it in a loop, adding the new sentences in bits to help me remember what words I wanted to say, what order I wanted to say them in. the album’s still playing, but the okra’s waiting. and I’m sitting here knowing these words aren’t the same ones I had in my head, but they’ll have to do. they’re close enough. they’re enough.

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creatively destructive

some destroy, I create

I got angsty so I tweezed my eyebrows, made eyeliner out of eyeshadow, and tried a new lip look

the eyeliner especially, I had to wreck the plates to get enough color

sometimes creation takes destruction

the destruction I feel pushes me to create

rather than continue

and sometimes in the creating

I get to destroy

but in a safe way

a necessary way

a benevolent way

that’s different from the destruction driving me

I must prefer my way, I turn to it so often

8.2.2020

what do I want?

the past, the past

don’t I want to look forward?

move on?

what’s there for me?

I’ve already lived that life

I went after my hopes, and now I’m here

going back won’t change that

time has passed

things have changed

what do I want now?

who am I?

new goals, new rules, new hopes + dreams

take note, but leave the rest behind

rest

recognize

you are not your past, and you’re not stuck there either

I want love

I don’t know where it’ll come from, and that’s okay

doesn’t matter where I’ve searched before

what matters is what I want

love

connection, intimacy, safety

I know this

I know I want a house, full of decorations, and full of yes,

love

I don’t know where it’ll be, the exact layout, the blueprint

doesn’t matter

what matters is what I want

a career

I don’t know what it is that I’ll be doing everyday, what my job will want from me, what my hobbies will want from me

doesn’t matter

what matters is what I want

there’s nothing wrong with wanting these things, I don’t think

a heart is meant to have desires

and I know I’ll end up somewhere

but it won’t be by chance

I won’t get there without putting in the work

can I control the outcome? no, never

doesn’t matter

what matters is what I want

7.24.2020

humbled beginnings

yes, humbled

I’m back to writing whenever things click, so it’s 7:25am. for someone who’d gotten used to sleeping around 4am, my body is definitely confused right now. but as I was trying to go back to sleep, something clicked. I’ll walk you through what was going on.

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what are you attracted to?

personally, I like “to do” lists

check boxes and color codes and deadlines, all of that grabs my attention

but alas, just making the the list won’t do

neither will ripping it up

you have to put in the work

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5.28.2020

of dreams?

were you what,

scared?

I want to 

flip the script.

now mine, it’s

different.

conquered, I fear.

forever lost

never remembered.

time? no, have I

left

that behind?

see, you’ll

acknowledge Death

follows what

lives.

live to want.

dreams of

what you were

scared

to want, I

script the flip.

it’s mine now.

different.

fear? conquered.

lost forever.

remembered never.

I have no time

left. 

behind that

you’ll see

Death. acknowledge

what follows.

lives.

want to live.

consumed or refined?

nobody likes a process, but here we are, processing.

recent events in the world may have life feeling like a trial, specifically, a trial by fire. I’ve been pretty checked out of social media recently, because a lot of the content I saw was draining and made me feel kinda hopeless. I’d think to myself, what’re we supposed to do in the face of all these systemic injustices? how’re we supposed to carry on?

y’all know I like to learn new things, so my digital hiatus has been put to pretty good use. recently, I’ve been focused on understanding the refining process. if you’re unfamiliar with it, here’s a summary:

  • there are lots of things you can do with metal. refining is the only process that gives you the same metal you started with in a purer state. others (smelting, calcining) chemically change the metal. yes, I did my research.
    • there are different types of refining that I could make analogies for, but this would turn into a very long post. we’re focused on trials–I mean–refining, by fire.
    • scientifically, oxygen or air is added to an impure liquid metal as a way to remove impurities. when does the blacksmith know the metal’s pure? he can see his reflection in it.

now run that all back.

you’re the metal, and God’s the blacksmith. but who wants to go through fire?

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20

I couldn’t come up with a witty title for this post, but the idea is that I want to share 20 things that I learned from being in the class of 2020. (update: a good title would’ve been 20* tips from a 2020 grad. but just “20” feels edgy (and also resolves the making 19 20 thing) so I’m keeping it.)

Trump got elected my freshman year, and I graduated with the cords of Covid-19 and racism heavy around my neck. It’s been a time.

Right now, people are being active. In the physical, in the spiritual. “Thoughts and prayers” won’t cut it (as a phrase), but spending time in prayer, in God’s Word, and in God’s presence is all keeping me together right now. But more on that in a minute, let me not get ahead of myself.

I’m bringing this list directly from my journal so it’s not in any specific order, and it’d probably look different on a different day, but here’s what we got:

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