i've been reading a lot different things about identity lately. and while the things i've read have discussed identity in different ways and have been looking at different facets of identity, they all have made me realize that i have sort of put on the identities thrown at me without questioning whether they fit or not. i don't think i've questioned and explored myself as much as i should or could. this is probably in part due to the fact that i identify as a cisgendered heterosexual black woman. i've taken a lot of things at face value because i could. i had/have that privilege. society made it easy and i let myself be funneled into categories because i didn't think/know/feel difference within myself.
but yesterday as i sat in an event and as i was thinking about identity and how i've been feeling lately, i wondered if part of the reason i've always yearned to step out of myself is perhaps because i've never actually spent time asking myself who i am, what i like, what i want, outside of the box others, society, life has drawn for me or that i drew for myself because i thought it was the best box to draw... yes, many of the identities thrown at me seem to fit, but all that comes along with some of those identities doesn't always feel right. lately i realized that the some parts of the boxes are all wrong. i don't really fit in them. maybe i did, but no longer. or maybe i never did and my back hurts and i want to stand up, which will break the boxes.
at last night's event, we had to make a list of things from the first half of 2017 that we wanted to get rid of and a list of things we wanted to cultivate in the second half of 2017. the list of things i want to get rid of had a number of things on it, but one major one was this self-doubt, self-loathing, lack of self-love i've been feeling about myself (a story for another day...). and as i sat to write the list of things i wanted to cultivate, i realized that i had written the world exploration twice. i want to explore who i am and what i want and what boxes fit and which don't. i also wrote that i wanted the freedom to be me. honestly, the biggest barrier to freedom in my case may be my own self and mind and my absorption of certain societal rules and expectations. if that's true, then here's to me getting out of my own damn way.
when i got home last night, i burned the list of things i wanted to get rid of.
hopefully the boxes i feel uncomfortable in began to burn too.