Is there a choice- being Privileged?

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Growing up in one of the richest towns of NJ, which is jammed packed into various of classes from the super rich to super poor. I am witness to those who are privileged and those who are not privileged. In high school, I witnessed as those who were privileged slowly look down upon those who were not and those who were not ridicule and put to shame those who were.

As a person who is a strange bag of privileged (both of my parents went to college, my grandfather owns 2 homes in my town, 2 apartment buildings in NY and a secondary vacation home in PA. And though I reside in the lower portion of town, I can say I have blessed with extravagant gifts and have visited various of places to which my neighbors and fellow non-privileged counterparts cannot say they went) I am also not privileged (because I am also an African-American middle class female which means that I am double a whammy. Not only am I the target of racism but sexism. Talk about harsh.)

So I consider myself a neutral. Yes, sure I can flaunt my status and possessions as materialistic evidence that I am well off in comparison to others, but the color of my skin and body shape cannot deny that I am at a loss for certain things in life.

One thing I have learned about the privileged is that there are some that does place their privileged-ness as a badge, they speak to others who aren’t and state that they didn’t choose to be who they are. And you know what, your right. But only seeing the world through your privileged eyes is a choice and that is what non-privileged people don’t like.

They (non-privileged) don’t like it when you shame them for who they (non-privileged) are,  they (non-privileged) don’t like it when you speak about non-privileged life when you have never lived and spoken to someone who lives it but flaunt your so called information as truth, they (non-privileged) don’t like it when you try to say it’s not choice (to be privileged) but you refuse, absolutely refuse, to see theirs (non-privileged) as not a choice; they (non-privileged) don’t like it when you ignore their circumstances, and finally they (non-privileged) don’t like it when you separate them (non-privileged) from the rest of society.

I am not putting down privileged people because I am one of those privileged people. All I am saying is this:

“Privileged- being who are is not a choice. Your right. You was lucky and blessed to be who you are. But don’t forget for a minute, don’t ignore for a second that it is a blessing. And it is blessing that was incidentally given to you. You didn’t deserve it, because nobody deserves being a starving child in a third-world country. Yes your parent’s worked hard (just like mines) but don’t forget that their parent’s worked hard as well and there is no difference between their efforts. They might have had different results but both teams works equally to get it. (A painter and a sculptor both work equally hard to get their artworks. Though the sculptor gains a sculpture, and the painter a painting. They both worked equally to gain their prize.) You must understand that your parents might have gained more rewarding results in comparison to others. Sadly in this society. If you live in a certain area (due to lack of money) and work at a certain job (lack of education or racism or sexism limitations) sometimes no matter how hard you work, you only get certain results. Some people live in a limited society  that no matter how hard they work, their efforts due to environment, background and yes OTHERS can cause their results to be fruitless.

Yes maybe they didn’t have their parents working hard because they are orphans or their parents just don’t care for them. At times like those, you should be thankful to have someone who loves and cares for you. Or thankful to be born in a blessed family (even if they don’t love or care for you) And you should look at those who don’t have parents not with pity but with admiration. They was able to live on without love in their life. Understand that and it takes a lot of strength to live in a world filled with hatred and help those who can’t find their way. Don’t let these people go on to be criminals and blame their circumstances, but help them to get back on their feet and live the right way. Not because you know the right way, but because you are blessed with the ability to help someone out and to find the right way.

Being privileged is not a status, it’s not something that you just live with. But blessing, an ability to help others.

So you have more education than others, use it to teach those who can’t get it. You have more money, use money to help others who don’t have it. Whether that is setting up a business that supplies jobs to those who needs it, opening a hospital in towns where people can’t get proper health care or something else useful to the world. But don’t, please don’t just say, “Well I am privileged and that’s that!” NO!! Why not use your privilege to actually bring prosperity to yourself but OTHERS.

It’s not choice of being born, it’s a choice of living. Do you want to be looked upon as ignorant blessed person or as a human being who not only earned their title but has been called such because others have granted it to them due to their kindness, wisdom and actions.

Being Privileged- your right is not choice, but living your ignorance-is. And that choice is one I don’t like, you shouldn’t either.

I will be speaking to the non-privileged in the next diary entry!! For now that’s it!

 

 

2 Hours Worth of Sleep and buttload of Finals

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I hate finals, its like no matter how good of a student I am during the year. I always find myself panicking around this time till the point where I am cramming till it is 30 minutes before the test or essay is given (of course it takes me 15 minutes to get to school and an extra 5 to find my class, so if I am home this of course lessens the time I actually have).

Especially since I haven’t been in the mood this semester, I simply lack the will and drive to improve myself. Until of course later this year. Where I finally decided upon focusing myself to a single task and that is a writing major.

As of right now, the only thing that is keeping me awake and possibly functional (as a human being) is a 1/2 bottle of 5 hour energy, vitamin water (which is jammed packed with sugar) and a small amount of substantial nutrients (bacon).

During these times, I wonder if undergraduate school is it worth it? If it even counts in a world that pushes so much for higher degrees for the simplest of jobs. I realize that this is only the beginning, that undergraduate doesn’t mean anything in this world. And in fact, I have to spend another possible 200,000 or further become more in debt to society in order to get a job (and I would be even lucky to even get a high paying job that actually covers my needs and quickly pays off me debt.)

I’m beginning to feel as if society just might be screwing with me….. But right now I am too tired to continue in these thoughts.

Do I Continue or Stop here?

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So today was my final “Singing for the Actor” and as my fall semester quickly comes to an end. I wonder if I should continue in my minor. I was recently discovered an old friend of mines from high school was graduating. I never felt more proud for her. I was truly happy for her. But I began to wonder how long I have been in college. I have lost tracked of the years to be honest. And the more and more I thought about it, more and more I wondered if getting a minor in musical theater was really worth it.

Was I really actually going to use my minor or was it holding me back from graduating. With two minors under my belt, I discovered that with the more time I added to my skills. The more classes I had to take which meant the more time I would have to spend in college. Not that I am ready for the real world. But I began to wonder maybe it was time to let go of the old desire of Broadway. And if I was really into musical theater, maybe it’s time to make it a major for graduate school.

I wondered where my minor has taken me and if it was possible to continue in it. Not that I have never dreamed of being on the stage. I have but I want so many things in life, but I have to focus on one thing at a time right now.

But if I drop a minor it doesn’t mean I quit on the dream, in fact there are plenty of other ways for me to still continue in my musical dreams. I could take up classes outside of classes, audition more and possibly try out for the musical theater major at another college. But I know that I don’t have much time left in college (at least as undergraduate) and with the cost of it going up each year. I think it’s about time I trim myself.

I end my minor this year, it doesn’t mean I gave up on my dream. But rather it just means I must find another way to my dreams. That might mean, depending on my own skills and on God to find a way.

I’m Back!!!!

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Hey Everyone,

I’m back!!! Sorry for my absence-life has certainly happened to me. Bad things and good things, confusing things and clear things. But one thing I can say for sure- is I am so happy my Christmas Break is coming up for school. This year has been a laid back and sadly hard year for me.

I tried to take a break this year by taking less classes but ended up being so lazy this year that I didn’t care enough for my classes to take them seriously. Now I’m just praying that I can graduate from college, get my degree, get a decent job and go to graduate school and finally determine my career.

So this year I have accomplished much: I have entered my Junior year of College, happily celebrating my year anniversary with my handsome boyfriend and typing on my new fancy computer (which I built with my bf) as well as purchased myself a new Wacom Companion 2.

This year I have determined within myself to live my life for myself. Meaning: I am going to live my life more confidently.

That means going back to writing everyday, drawing everyday, singing everyday and caring about my future. For too long I have let my shyness and pessimistic teenage years drag me down. As I approach 22 (yes 22!!) I am beginning to think about what I actually want from life and from myself.

What do I want from my life? Happiness. I want to be happy or rather joyful. I wish to find joy in all situations, to live out my life and know that I am doing things that drive me to a better future. I want to enjoy my life and everyday. I want to understand myself and understand the world around me even more than I did before.

So I want to tell you guys- that I am back! And I am not only back for good but possibly forever through all trials of life. I hope you guys join me on this journey.

-Christine D.

Turning 21 is quieter than I suspected

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So January is over and I officially turned 21 ( Yay! Me!) right? I mean turning 21 from what I saw from tv and culture meant everything. I mean no more child like appearance, no more pain, no more depression, and no more being limited based upon my age. I thought I would suddenly grow into a beautiful, curvacious, sexy, club-hitting, drinking adult. And that society or my parents will give me a apartment  in which I could live in, in addition to a possible boyfriend for life (husband) and the world will start to want me. But I found turning 21 was smaller than I thought.

What do I mean by smaller?

Simple, turning 21 was not that big of a deal. I mean yes drinking and clubbing is always fun. I won’t deny it. But drinking to my heart’s desire and clubbing was not what I really wanted out my life. And it was then at that moment. That no matter how many clubs I could go to now than before and no matter how many drinks I could order now in comparison to before. I would still and sadly enough be considered the same old Christine. And with such a responsibility. I had no choice but to accept my life for what it was limited.

That even though I was 21, I would still have to go to school, I would still have to attend classes, I would still have to date various of guys before I found the “one” and the world nonetheless wanted me sorted out as working or not, rather than digging for me like treasure and cherishing me.

Turning 21 is big but its not that big. And being consumed by alcohol and drugs will not make you feel anymore adult like until you yourself take responsibility for your life like an adult. And though that part doesn’t sound that fun to most. Paying the bills, getting a job, aging. It is a part of growing up.

So yes pick up that cup of bud, throw that intoxicated dart towards its target and stumble about the streets with the blast music of the club still ringing in your ears. But never forget your responsibility. Cause with each age, it only gets heavier and harder to carry.

Short Story for Class

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Just a short story for class… 🙂

Imperfect Writer: My Journey to Finding Myself

A Small Bouquet of Roses

He came through the door with small a bouquet of roses, a card and a brown paper bag of breakfast. When I was younger I often heard truth between the lines of every black romance movie that “Black women are destined for black successful men or doomed to be unhappy and single for the rest of their lives or unhappy with children for the rest of their lives.” I did not think much of about romance when I was younger, in fact, love in my mind seemed quite complicated. My parents often spoke of it as a fling for most of my life. Until I reached the age of twenty when I grew closer to the age of drinking alcohol and partying. I was always molded, prepared, and told to go through life without thinking about romance. My father often spoke of it as if…

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Short Story for Class

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A Small Bouquet of Roses

He came through the door with small a bouquet of roses, a card and a brown paper bag of breakfast. When I was younger I often heard truth between the lines of every black romance movie that “Black women are destined for black successful men or doomed to be unhappy and single for the rest of their lives or unhappy with children for the rest of their lives.” I did not think much of about romance when I was younger, in fact, love in my mind seemed quite complicated. My parents often spoke of it as a fling for most of my life. Until I reached the age of twenty when I grew closer to the age of drinking alcohol and partying. I was always molded, prepared, and told to go through life without thinking about romance. My father often spoke of it as if it was something grownups could only attain at the age of 30; my mother rarely even talked about it as if it was some mythical feeling of primitive beings no longer needed. Moreover, for most of my life; I had often found myself seeking the company of myself rather than others.

Now that is not to say I did not have a few boyfriends in the past. It’s true I had my once in a while average Joes, a few I believed would make it over the long haul with me. However, they certainly were nothing like “him” in any way.

The sweet smell ketchup filled the air, as he neared closer towards me. Slight shock had filled my toes as I became unable to move. My eyes stared almost glaringly at the three simple roses that stood from the plastic. Their young petals still just budding from their clutches. With each step he took, the brilliant crimson of their skin bleeds ever more brilliantly upon their lips in the dusted morning sunlight.

“Hey, I Ummm… Well, this is for you” Tamir stumbles over his words slightly before the last part spews from his lips and flops onto the dark floorboards before our feet. His tall frame hid beneath his dark and tired hoodie and super new green sweatpants that loosely hangs over his new red Nike sneakers. Placing the small bouquet into my arms. His hands last just seconds upon the bouquet before he slowly, hesitantly them pulls away. As if he were afraid I might drop them from my arms. Feeling the cold flower lips touch my skin, I stare at the little present that now rested on my bosom. The yellow card hanging from the plastic wrap just beneath the red ribbon. Utterly lost of words.

*             *             *

I knew he was running later than usual. Often times after our nightly embraces, he would get up early in the morning and bring me breakfast. Whether that meant cooking it or purchasing it from the local bagel store a few blocks from his house. I would wake up to the smell of bacon and eggs and a cold glass of orange juice just inches from my grasp. He would then leave a trail of gentle kisses over my mahogany skin just between my shoulder-blades. Before whispering my name into my dream. Like always I would wake up whispering:

“Good morning bubble butt” pressing the palm of my hand into his bearded cheek. As I stare into his brown eyes.

“Morning chocolate bunny” before he would kiss my lips. Pulling my tired body into his chest. As he holds me there against his warm mass.

*             *             *

My heart suddenly goes silent within my chest; as I stare at the roses in my arms. This had never happened to me. I have gone on numerous dates, some who paid for dinner, others who let me watch a movie on their game station and the one guy who took me to the zoo. However, never once had any of the guys I have dated ever gave me roses. I mean not that giving me roses was the first thing this “guy” has ever done for me that was romantic or made me feel special. For days when we chilled at his place or if we sat in a restaurant or went grocery shopping. I found myself finding something in his eyes. I found an endless list of words that seemed too fresh for our lovely wounds, a sensation that echoed to the very fibers of my soul. Lov…

‘No’ that’s impossible I would shake my head. I knew what love meant, and it wasn’t as happy those Disney Movies would display. So he couldn’t have fallen for me. He couldn’t find me attractive. For years, I was taught by society what was beautiful and charming. It wasn’t kinky curls, dark brown eyes, acne prone skin, thick messy eyebrows and a girl who actually cared about graduating near the top 30% to 10% of the class. No beauty was straight hair, blue eyes, light hair or thick dark straight hair and small tiny waist and legs that men supposed goes gaga over. And these traits, were nothing like me. So I had always questioned the relationships I was in. Now I cannot say that I would be won over by roses surely. However, for years of going through relationships, where men and boys gander at my breast more than they listen to my words. I have come to discover that Tamir was a bit odd.

*             *             *

“Tell me about your story” was the first conversation me and Tamir ever had.

“My novel?”

“Yeah, I saw on your profile that you are writing a novel. Tell me about it?” Tamir sat just inches from me. His eyes hanging hazily just inches from closing gave me the idea that he was clearly on some kind of drug. His slightly crooked teeth made me feel inferior to him in looks. I couldn’t help judging him the first moment I saw him. He wasn’t the kind of person I would call “The Goods” or the “Right Material.” In fact, if I may boast a bit, most my boyfriends before were quite handsome and trimmed. Causing me to feel inferior to them and feel insecure about my looks. “What kind is it? Horror, Sci-Fi, Non-Fiction?” he named a few genres.

Okay, so he’s a bit more learned than my last ‘encounters’.

“It’s a young adult fiction, with a bit of fantasy. I guess somewhat of an urban fantasy though not so focused on the older tales” I smiled warmly hoping to hide the dirty judging thoughts that filled my skull. I had been working on this novel for six-year and with no avail to writing all of its content on paper.

“Oh cool, young adult. So are there like strange creatures in your world? What are they? What do they do?” question after question he interviewed me. And with each question his eyes light up as he drew closer. Until I found myself staring into his brown eyes. Though his face was quite literally blocking most of my vision; I could feel the piercing stares of every black person walking the park that day.

Tamir is six feet tall, and 7 inches, not only is he tall. He is mixed with polish and African American blood. His warm slightly tanned peach skin glistened in the light that morning as his curly locks majestically waved about his head. Tamir is not only six-seven but also a great hero of weight loss. His trimmed figure still held some semblance of the four hundred rings of fat that once clutched to his body. His chest was not as flat as most guys his age and his stomach though slightly toned had a slight over-indulged bikini line. Moreover, to top it all off, Tamir was known as a goofy man. In comparison to me a mere five foot five, slightly dull looking girl in comparison to her classmates and soft spoken. We were complete opposites. We were quite an oddity it seemed no matter where we went. Moreover, to top it all off, we were of different skin color. I could remember the faces people made as Tamir walked me over to the park. Of the older black men who stared at my back as I walked away. As if I had stepped over some boundary with a clearly marked sign that said “No interracial dating.”

I was afraid of being with Tamir. Afraid that he would think of black girls as sexual objects, unable to think on their own. Or alternatively, as crazed buffoons who scream at the top of their lungs every second.

*             *             *

Feeling the warm water trickle over my body and warm my skin. I gaze at Tamir’s back. At spray of small pimples that showed across his skin like stars. I watched as the water rolled over his skin, as it dipped into beautiful valley just over his spine. And painted his skin in a judliant gleam of life. My fingers itched to touch his skin. Wishing I could press my forehead into his back. When he turned around.

“You want to shower off some?” he smiled some as he stepped aside allowing the water to hit more of me. Quickly hiding my flushed cheeks, I nod my head as I quickly move forward towards the front of the tub. Not thinking of the walls just at my toes and new found slippery surface covered over in soap waiting for me. Just as my foot took a step I slipped and began to fall outside the tub. My brain went on overdrive, as I began to map out the room. I began to think up of a million ways I would get hurt or possibly die in here. Of my head hitting the toilet seat, my legs crashing against the tub surface before I met the porcelain floor. As blood spills from my wound. I thought of how embarrassing it would be for the ambulance workers who would have to pick up and move my fat ass. Imaging how their eyes would trail over my body, finding every fat flabby fold and stretch line. I knew then, Tamir would wake up from his trance. That then and only then would he realize he made a terrible mistake to go out with a fat chick like me.

When suddenly I feel an arm wrap around my stomach and harshly pull up from my fatal fall. Before smacking against a warm chest. Looking up, I see Tamir’s eyes filled with a particular fear as he stares down at me. I found a child like a look within those dark manly eyes. That I believed was long gone from him. His arm twitched and fluttered tightly against me as I felt the veins in his arms throb profusely.

“Your okay?” his voice commandingly and yet questionably stumbled from his lips. Turning around in his arms, I felt his heart beat against my hand. As his chest returned to its normal pace.

He was worried…. For me…..

“Yeah I’m… I’m okay” I muttered in return.

*             *             *

Many times I had tried to date out of my race only to be met with racial stigmas and disappointments of people who believed I would be more open to the idea of anal sex. I could not help myself for how I was raised. I could not help that I was born with mahogany skin but do not inhabit the so-called black women character or personality many men desired of over sexualized African. Moreover, I could not help feeling rather distant to men who believed me to be dumb or naïve.

So when I often found myself being stared down for standing next to Tamir, I often wondered why he choose me. Tamir was never pushy, in fact hanging out was all he wanted from me. We would play video games, watch movies, go to the grocery store even have tickle fights. However, never once did Tamir put a stigma on me for my skin color. Never once have I felt sex was all he wanted or that he was just dating me for my breast. When Tamir stared into my eyes, he saw me. I could talk the way I wanted to, I could ask him things without dumb-ing them down out of fear that he wouldn’t understand me or that he would feel offended. Tamir allowed me to be me. And that was all he asked of me.

*             *             *

“Just be honest with me. That’s all I ask of you” Tamir whispered before he laid me down on the bed. Staring into his eyes, I found a certain seriousness in his eyes, anger, fear, hope, and confusion. I didn’t know what I was asking. Suddenly asking him to be my boyfriend. I had found myself thinking about him none stop, when I was away from him I begged to be near him. When he smiled it filled me with glee, I couldn’t explain. When he felt angry, I felt terribly sorry and angry for him. When he was sad, I wanted to cry for him, to take his burdens away. So when I found these words slipping from my lips. I knew why they were there, I just didn’t know when they would appear.

Nodding my head, I agreed to his terms. I agreed to be myself, to saying my thoughts and feelings. With a gentle kiss, I showed my pledge to his agreement.

*             *             *

Opening the card, I found a small message within saying:

Christy, you mean a lot to me. So much so that I rushed buying this gift for you and misspelled your name!

I am glad we took a chance on each other.

So many more fun times and laughs ahead.

-T.[1]

I knew then that Tami no matter how different he was, no matter how many people stared us down. I would be by his side for as long as I was allowed. True he was slightly overweight, not as educated and mentally handicapped somewhat (not high as I once believed, though not severely). Tamir was just perfect for me. Who would ever think, a small bouquet and simple card will help me to say the words I kept in my heart.

I love you, T.


 

[1] From a blog entry I wrote. I am Imperfect Writer on WordPress.com