When I decided that I was going to publish this blog, I was kinda shit scared! Let’s be honest, sharing your personal life with the world wide web can be quite a hit-and-miss situation but hey, what’s the worse that could happen that doesn’t already take place?
When I was a little girl running around barefoot in the street (in Jamaica by the way), I can’t say I envisioned this path for myself. In fact, I was too busy trying to get into the paper factory that always closing around the time I finished primary school..maybe 3pm? maybe 4pm? I can’t really remember. What I do remember however is the majestic smell of how freshly piled papers smelt and the impending fear of being caught red-handed and the beating I’d get from my uncle or granny if some guy looking all high and mighty with authority brought me home. Now, of course none of that deterred me from my mission, I was a stubborn and persistent child! Green paper, blue paper, pink paper, white paper, all different kinda sizes paper! I’m sure I was a menace to my grandmother, I don’t know where it all went but I sure knew where I could get it from, and if you needed a supply, I was your girl.
Lord knows my uncle wasn’t one to spare the rod, and he sure didn’t hold back on it. Sometimes it’s quite comical looking back and sometime’s it isn’t, the latter more so because I never knew how much of an impact it would have on me later in my life as a young black woman. He imprinted this idea that it was okay for a man to hit and punish when it seemed fit and at times when it was just unnecessary. That may not have been his intention, however that was the effect on my psyche. Fast-forward a few years later, I arrive in England, a strange place, many pale faces, the disgustingly cold weather (disgustingly because I was used to hot weather).. my mind, my body and soul were not trying to acclimatize so easily! I became increasingly aware that being Black in England, the baby mama of colonialism, especially when you aren’t born here takes some getting used to.
If my spiritual guardians could have kindly filled me on the strength and resilience I would need just to get through some years, maybe right now I’d have been in a different lane, I would have had time to mentally, physically, emotionally and spiritually prepare myself but as we grow, we learn that life prepares us whether we are aware of it or not. Sometimes it takes a few hard knocks and knuckles to wake up to a deeper meaning of the journey in the flesh. I’m still figuring it out. There really isn’t any rush if you don’t get it right now, sometimes you just don’t and I guess it’s not really about figuring it out. But just trusting that it’s worth something much bigger, more expansive, just waiting for you in the near horizon.
My love, my passion for paper has brought me here. Writing is my freedom, my liberation. In my darkest times, my hands become my voice because my throat seizes up. I was silenced involuntarily, but my fire was still burning rage to purge. Each time I was hit or my body was used as a dumping ground for unwanted rubbish discarded by lovers. My cells would write symphonies and symphonies unto each-other, they would create stories that oozed through the most intimate parts of my being, so that one day, I could give you a pearl.