The birth of Bobo… 2009.
The birth of Bobo… 2009.
Aside from the Great American Novel, you mean?
Of course I’d love to write something that becomes majorly famous and is well loved by everyone… but having my small collection of groupies makes me happy too.😉
There is one topic that I have wanted to write about but just haven’t done yet though. I really want, at some point, to put my thoughts down about what the term “Cultural Appropriation” means to me as a biracial person. The term gets thrown around ALLLL the damn time now and although I think some people mean well when they say it, at the same time they have no idea what it means when you’re of two cultures.
Honestly, it’s kind of a slap in the face and kind of an insult to me when I hear people claiming that something is appropriating such and such culture. Because the way I look at it, if my white friend is supposedly appropriating black culture with her dread locs, what does that mean about me? I’m both black AND white. Am I appropriating white culture because I have “good hair?” Or am I appropriating black culture because my hair is curly and kinky? Is my daily life appropriating black and white culture at all times because I am not just one or the other? No. I’m just being me. But is the way I live a biracial culture? I don’t think so… I think it’s a human culture.
That’s probably a stupid example… but I feel like the idea of cultural appropriation is stupid. I feel like people are people and skin color doesn’t give anyone ownership over anything. There are naturally blonde haired and blue eyed people with brown skin, and there are white people with kinky afros and none of it matters. Should people be proud of who they are? Absolutely. But if you like the way cornrows look and want to rock them, fucking do it! It doesn’t matter what color your skin is and you’re not stealing anyone’s culture by doing it.
The reason I haven’t written about this subject, and am not going to go much further right now, is because I know that sharing my views will piss some people off. People who feel like they’re being warriors by pointing out when they feel like cultural appropriation is happening, people who don’t understand what it’s like to be biracial, and quite possibly half of my family. Frankly, I’m not ready to be that punching bag. I’ve seen good meaning biracial folks and biracial supporters try and speak up on this issue and get trashed by people who supposedly know more than them and feel the need to educate them.
Taye Diggs recently made a statement that he does not want his son (who is biracial) to grow up saying that he (the son) is a black man. He wants his son to say he’s biracial (or mixed) because that’s what he is and calling himself just black would be denying half of his heritage. I agree. But the black community attacked Taye and went on and on about how he supposedly isn’t proud of his son’s black side and blah blah fucking blah. *insert extreme eye roll* I don’t care if his kid grows up to be as dark chocolate as Taye himself, if he’s biracial he should be claiming that. He’s not just black or just white no matter what he may look like on the surface. I get pissed when people refer to President Obama as “The First African American President” because guess what? He’s NOT! He’s the first BIRACIAL President. Every time someone refers to him as just black or African American, they’re denying half of him. They’re ignoring that amazing single mom, who happens to be white, who raised an amazing man. Every time someone asks me to “choose one” on a form when it comes to ethnicity, they’re asking me to only choose half of who I am. It’s bullshit.
So yeah… someday I’ll write it. Maybe. :) For now though, I just sigh and keep on scrolling when it comes to cultural appropriation. It’s hard sometimes, but better to do that over getting attacked for what I believe, right?
I mentioned recently that I’d been working on a blog post about why I’ve been such a shitty blogger this year. Aside from still being in transition and training for my new job, I’ve also been doing a lot of medical stuff. That awful, shitty, horrible, no good, very bad doctor I’ve had for the past few years has been replaced. Yay!! My new doctor, so far, has listened to me and said things like, “Let’s get you feeling better first and then deal with XYZ…” and “Why didn’t Dr. Suck run this test?” (She didn’t really call her Dr. Suck… LOL) She also referred me to a Rheumatologist who I saw after waiting for several months and who also listened to me and didn’t try to blow me off like my old suck-ass doctor did. So I’ve had a billion blood tests, found out that my Vitamin D is chronically low, and I have to have x-rays and start physical therapy while my new doctors work on figuring out what the heck is wrong with my body. (I’m convinced it’s Fibromyalgia but we’ll see…). So yeah, I’ve been tired. I love my job, but it’s hard when I’m always in pain and my boss keeps wanting to increase my caseload every few weeks. It’s not nearly as emotionally draining as the old job, but it’s hard on my body. By the time I get home I’m usually pretty worthless and just haven’t had any energy to blog or write or do anything fun.
I do however have a health related tale to tell you. So gather ’round, my peeps… I’ve gotta school ya for a bit and I get to say the word boob a lot which I love. Boob. Boob. Boob. LOL
As you may know, this is a big birthday year for me. I’ll be officially moving into a new age bracket that begins with a 4. Forty comes many new things, more grey hair, more chronic pain, more wondering/worrying about ever getting to be a mom to my own kids… All the usual things. But one thing that came early was my very first mammogram.
Let me start off by saying that for years and years if someone said to me that they didn’t get mammograms because they hurt my auto response has been, “You know what hurts more? Breast Cancer.” I don’t believe in the whole, “I’m not going to do it because it hurts” excuse because really, it can’t hurt THAT bad. We’re women, we have periods and cramps and give birth, a boob smash should be pretty low on the pain scale as far as I’m concerned.
I called to make my yearly girly appointment and the chick was like, “When was your last mammogram?” and I told her I’d never had one she looked at my date of birth and said it was time. I didn’t flinch and made the appointment.
A week later I was there for the boob smash.
So here’s the thing… It didn’t hurt. It wasn’t pleasant, but it wasn’t something that I would necessarily avoid like the plague. The left boob did pinch a little more than the right but it was so quick that I was like, “This is it?” Even the tech said to me, “Have you been told horror stories? Those are about the old machines, the new ones aren’t bad at all.” Really, it wasn’t bad.
So by now you’re thinking, “Why are you talking about this?” Well, because my experience didn’t stop with just one mammogram.
A few days later I got a call saying that they wanted to re-image the left boob. I figured it was because I’d moved or something since like I said, the left side hurt a little more than the right. But no, when I returned I found out that there were two spots of concern that they wanted different shots of and I was also going to have an ultrasound.
The immediate results from that said “It’s probably lymph nodes.” A few days after that I got a call telling me that they wanted to do a biopsy.
At this point I’m doing my best not to jump from zero to cancer but I’m not going to lie, I went there. The few people who I told were mostly supportive and kept telling me I’d be fine. I’d smile and nod but in my head I often thought, “Yeah but we’ll see…”
March 3rd came along and I went with my mom to a place called the Breast Center for my biopsy. There are several different types of biopsies but I was having an ultrasound guided needle biopsy. I knew what to expect because frankly I’d googled and YouTubed the crap out of it (I have to know as much as possible about things… Education is one of my resiliency tools).
So the doctor comes in and he’s this adorable gum chewing little guy who shares the same last name as me. He explained what was going to happen and demonstrated the biopsy tool because it makes this really loud pop gun sort of thing when he takes the sample. I was anticipating it but I think my mom was happy to have the warning.
According to the doctor, the two spots were very small and he wasn’t very impressed by them. LOL um, thanks? They were not fluid filled cysts, which would’ve been the best result so he did have to go ahead with the needle biopsies.
For the first spot he took about two cores, and the second one he took five. By core I mean he shot the hollow needle through the lump to collect a core sample. I didn’t feel a thing, but it was pretty cool to watch on the ultrasound screen. My mom is a LPN and she got a kick out of it too. LOL
Oh and when they do a biopsy they put these surgical steel markers in your boob so that the spot is marked. I have two markers in my left boob now for the rest of my life. One is shaped like a breast cancer awareness ribbon and is frankly pretty cute on the mammogram they did after the biopsy. (I wish I had a copy of it, seriously it’s kinda cool.)
I left with steri-strips on the two incisions in my boob, a dressing covering it all, and a handy little ice pack that I could put in my bra. Then I had to wait a full week for the results.
No really. A whole fucking week. Ugh. More time to assume I was going to have cancer and wonder what my head would look like shaved and how I would explain it to Doodlebutt if I was sick. By the time I went back in for my results I was sure I had cancer.
But I don’t. Yay!
I have two benign thingymajigs (LOL I can’t remember the name and have no idea where the paperwork is right now). They don’t have to come out and basically I just have to monitor them with yearly boob smashes. Whew!
My bruises are finally gone (it took forever). I have two little scars from where the biopsies were done. I no longer feel the need to walk around holding my boob so that it doesn’t move too much and hurt. LOL It was a scary situation, but I made it thorough and I don’t by any means regret getting that mammogram. Had my thingymajigs been cancer, it would have been early (too early to be felt by hand) and hopefully would’ve been treatable. But if I’d avoided the mammogram because it might hurt it could have grown and spread and been much worse.
So the moral of the story… get your freaking boobs smashed. Then go buy yourself a treat for being a good, responsible, girl.
I’m going to be the ever lame one and just link to an old post that we did about favorite books because yeah… life and stuff. My favorites haven’t really changed since the last time we wrote about them. I’m sure I’ve added to the list, but to be honest, I just can never think of favorite books when people ask me about the topic. :p
So… go here if you want to re-read, or you weren’t around the last time we had this subject. :)
Otherwise, check out what the other ladies have to say because they probably actually wrote something new.😀
Also… I have a post coming up about why the heck I’ve missed so many of our scheduled blog posts… it’s just not done yet. LOL
Of all of the things I can tell you from the future, the most important one is that you are right. You do have clinical depression and you’re not “just going through a phase” or “have a school phobia.” You will graduate high school AND college just like you promised Mom and Dad you would when you dropped out of 10th grade. You know exactly what you need to finish school… fight for it. Sadly, you won’t be 25 until your diagnosis of Dysthymia, but you were right and all of those so-called “professionals” were wrong. You’re not crazy, you’re not stubborn (well, not when it come to this at least), you’re not a drama queen, and you’re not doing it for attention… you just have a chemical imbalance and a fuck-ton of anxiety. Meds will help, but you’ll still struggle and have to work hard at overcoming some of your fears. Word to the wise, don’t ever try to face your fear of bats… it’ll backfire horribly and give you PTSD. Just get Mom to do it.
You’re going to get a chance to be a big sister and it’s going to be great. It’s a long weird story that I won’t spoil for you. But the sweetest, most amazing Peanut will come into your life just when you think you’ll never be a big sister and it’ll be so cool.
Don’t be afraid of cruises, they’re actually pretty awesome and you won’t freak out.
Don’t stop writing! Someone will try and talk you out of pursuing journalism because it doesn’t pay the bills, but that doesn’t mean you have to stop writing. Just write because it makes you happy. Fan fiction… look it up.😉
This thing called the Internet is going to rock your world and bring some pretty awesome things and people into your life. Have fun with it, but just be aware that not everyone who seems like they’re going to stay in your life forever will actually do so. Some will hurt you, but you’ll be so much stronger afterward.
Be your own advocate when it comes to your health! You know when your body feels wrong and if you come across a doctor who wants to blame everything on your weight or say “You’re too young to be in that much pain,” leave and get another doctor. You are the expert of you. It’s hard to speak up, especially since you’ve got a history of shitty doctors not listening to you, but you can do it! Get your bitch on, she’s in there and she’s fabulous!
Curls Rock Amplifier will change your curls forever! Find it and never let it go!
Don’t give your phone number to the dude who flirts with you at Burger King when you’re buying Backstreet Boys toys. He’s a stalker who will make you consider changing your phone number. Just say no. As for the Backstreet Boys… oh, honey, enjoy the ride!
You haven’t met your best friend yet. The one who is your bestie right now will get all weird and kinda break your heart when she decides that dating a bigot is okay even though she’s been your best friend for years and years. But the one you’ll meet soon is super cool… you’ll even get matching tattoos one day. Yes, you get tattoos! Ink is fun! Just don’t get one in Toronto in 2001 with the chick you’re on vacation with. She’s one of those people who isn’t going to stick around. But you’ll have a ton of fun with her and learn a lot while she’s around.
I feel like I’ve said too much. Just be the awesome you that you know you are. The world needs your sunshine, even when you feel like it doesn’t.
All my hugs,
39 Year Old You
Hi, my name is Sly-Boy. Actually, my given name is Sly Cooper but no one ever calls me that.
I am beautiful. The runt in the background is Storm. Shea’s okay and sometimes I let her clean my ears, but she’s a baby and has way too much energy.
This is my window. I use it to watch the birdies, the Bringer of the Boxes, and all of those low class strays who seem to think they own the big room outside of my window. One day I will figure out how to get into that room.
That’s the Elder Cat, Kira. She says mean things to me. I get her back by making poo in her favorite litter box.
See my paws? Beautiful.
Sometimes I do cute things like this with my beautiful paws. Then when someone pets my belly, Kung Fu Kitty! Rawr!
I suppose I should talk about my human since this is her blog. She gives good head bumps for a human, I don’t like it when she cleans my ears, and I only bite her occasionally.
I’m bored now, send canned food, and those puffy Cheetohs things.
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My life in black and white.
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