in elementary school, my best friend dubbed me a “reversed oreo.” i was the female product of a black man mixed with a white woman, yet by skin tone, i appeared entirely caucasian – perhaps a little on the pale side.

subsequently, half of my family is black while half are white.  furthermore, my older sister, one of eight total siblings, was adopted from india. my step-mother left africa permanently for the first time only eight years ago while pregnant with my younger brother. thus, all three of my younger siblings are, in the literal sense of the term, african-american.

i am a particle within a mixing pot and this is why i call myself gray.  to be clear, the shame is unrelated.

but nevermind all of that. nevermind illinois and being born here and still remaining here after twenty-six years with no plans of leaving and very little vacation time under my belt. nevermind the fact that i had very different plans growing up.

“where are you from?” a prompt once asked. i cannot stop asking, rather, “what am i from?”

for most of my life, i did everything too hard, in search of something i couldn’t pinpoint. i made a complete mess of myself. and then, i picked myself up, mostly. the search continues, but in different ways, most of the time. and sometimes, the same.

i’m from carelessness that doesn’t stem from ignorance and pushing much too hard and too often for the wrong things. i’ve been brave, bold, fierce, beautiful, weak, mean, cowardly, ugly – a complete disaster.

but when i’ve had the luxury, those few short times, of inhaling that thick salty coastal breeze, i’ve almost exploded. it’s been five or six years since i’ve smelled it. i hope that this works like a tolerance break, so that when i arrive again, i can expand into something i’ve always wanted to be but could never find.

perhaps i’ll go out orgasmically, like a bomb, whenever it is that the shore and i finally meet again. because maybe i’m from liquid, from oceans. or maybe, most likely, i’m from lighter fluid.

  1. Hi! I can sense some similarity with you from my innermost being. Thank you for dropping by at my blog 🙂

    • hello there(: thank you for being the first to drop by and comment. i appreciate you being forthcoming about your internal sense of similarity between us as i am rarely similar to others. i very much look forward to reading your blog.

  2. I think writing is an ongoing journey of discovery. Nice to meet you on this leg of the journey! Join us any time at Carrot Ranch. It’s friendly space to explore raw fiction through writing flash stories.

  3. I’ve only just started exploring your blog, but I’m really enjoying your prose and am just enamored by your openness, your commitment to vulnerability, your honesty. I’m so glad you stopped by my blog because it got me to find your writing.

    • i’ve also just begun looking into your writing, but i love what i see. i connect with the way you present language beautifully without the excess. i find your style unique. how wonderful it is that we’ve found one another. thank you for your kindness and i hope to communicate more as we create.

  4. Love the reasoning on why you call yourself gray.

  5. Hi,

    What a beautifully written description of growing up confused and slowly
    discovering yourself! We’ve all struggled with our own childhood demons
    and some of us still are. But when we share those struggles, we strengthen
    not only ourselves, but each other

    Bravo — write on,

  6. Karin, i truly appreciate you taking the time to post your compliment and kind words of encouragement. i will think back on this comment when i find it difficult to share horrific truths from the past. thank you so, so much.

  7. I love the way you write and I look forward to following and reading more! Thanks for your interest in my blog.

    • thank you for the compliment and for reading. i plan to comment on your blog as i become more familiar with it. happy you chose to stop by!

  8. Hello and welcome aboard pensitivity101. Thanks for the follow. Looking forward to hearing from you in the comments.

i'd be thrilled to hear your true, uncensored thoughts. i'd also love to read your writing.