“It is not something you just let happen. Your body knows how to do it, but you still have to do it. Nevertheless, as it is when one is good at something, I enjoyed the effort because in many ways the effort was effortless. I spread my wings and took to the sky. No one heard from me for an hour.”
I wish I felt as confident as Onyesonwu, the sorceress-heroine of Nnedi Okorafor’s Who Fears Death. She just took flight. Me? I need a blog post to mark what I already feel.
Time to take flight.
So many new things were happening, are happening, that I didn’t even have time to do an update. With the help of the Shawty Got Skillz/INCITE Women of Color crew and YOU, my lovely & loving donors, I finally attended the Allied Media Conference. I met activists, artists, bloggers, and organizers I’ve admired for years. Years. With @MdotWrites there in spirit, we rocked a session on using safe and critical use of Twitter. I smanged some delicious pasta and radical POC conversation and made friends I hope to have for-ev-er (Dancing on Embers, I’m looking at you). Care packages, skill share materials and more are on their way so make sure I have your contact information if you donated, purchased the skill share gift package, still WANT to purchase, etc. (More info on this to come, don’t worry. You will get reminders!)
And if you want to follow along with what the Shawty Got Skillz sharers are doing now or catch up on the back tweets, follow @ShawtyGtSkillz (no “O” in “got”) on Twitter, head over to the Shawty Got Skillz Tumblr, or search the #SGSZ hashatg.
I also moved back to the District. I’m still soaking up the spectrum of sights, smells, and tastes I’ve missed for so long. No, I didn’t romanticize you DMV. Even when you’re ugly (#streetharassment, #Gentrification), I love you, because when I look into the worst of you I know I’m looking into parts of myself. And I know that black & brown folk regroup and rebuild. We will make it through this. I can’t wait to re-join the fight.
I moved in with Mr… (Moment–
–go on and get that out of your system)
…which has been a lesson in love, patience, sexual stamina, money management and all the rest. I’ve been officially banned from posting about it (what I wanted to do was make a new Tumblr because you know how I do) but I will be posting informal updates as the adventure unfolds (Hint: #LivingWithMr on Twitter).
And even though I’m back, I’m practicing a little bit of self-love & solitude. Yes, even with Mr. here, because in a lot of ways I’m letting him take care of me. According to Little Sis, this is my Year of the Hermit; I’m either going on a journey, sola, or I’m coming back from one. She’s the numerology guru but I do feel it. I’m reaching out less. I’m micro-managing my real life social networks less. I’m mothering less. I’m journaling more. I’m crafting stories and considering submitting them. I’m making plans for Nuñez Daughter and iwannalive productions and focusing inward on what my dreams for the next two, ten, twenty years will be. I’m babying myself. And I’m learning quite a bit about myself and my relationships as I go along. Good and bad. Ain’t that always the way?
Maybe most important, and the reason for the title and the image, I’m also in the last stages of writing my dissertation. There is a kind of death that this process requires, an execution I have been afraid to face–death of childhood, death of adolescence, death of certain radical dreams, death of certain assumptions about myself and life in general–but the time is nigh. Not because I feel like the research is over–in fact, there is a world of documents I can’t wait to dive into. But because circumstances demand that I move on to the next stage of my life. And the more I discuss my state of mind with colleagues and friends, the more I realize most dissertations aren’t written because the writer feels the research is complete–they are written because the writer feels that something has got to give. It may be financial or emotional, an impending job offer or a big move or a new marriage or a new baby or a death in the family. Or the death of a mentor. It may be that the sun shone through the window a different way that morning. But if the effort required to write a dissertation is quantifiable, I’d guess that only 40% of it is the work of researching. The other 50% is just mind & drive & courage. That last ten? Typing that b*tch out.
When I left the Little Town in New England, Asian Dancer put it just right. In paraphrase, she said, “You are setting yourself up with the most perfect situation you could ever imagine, the best situation possible to finish this thing. You’ll be in a city you love, with people you love and a man-piece who loves you for you to lay on. You are going to write all day. And then you are going to have sex all night. You’ll have no excuse not to. You’ll even want to.”
She’s right. I do. After all:
“…something must be written before it can be rewritten.”
This blog is about to be sporadic in updates. And when I do write, expect to get an eye-full of ranting and raving about bad coffee and loud cafés, obscure requests from committee members and last minute dashes to the archive. Along with learning more than you ever wanted to know about bondwomen’s reproduction, labor, market work and higglers, sex across the color line, libertines and debauchery, dances, tignons, 18th century birth registers, slave castles and poor soldiers, Afro-Atlantic maroonage, and other permutations direct from the experience of women of African descent during the period of African slavery. I’ll also be throwing in the usual Sable Fan Gyrl, pop culture, day-in-the-life, political ranting riff-raff that is my escape hatch. Can’t get too serious, right?
If I haven’t updated recently and you want to know where to find me, chop it up with me on Twitter (@KismetNunez). It’s public so you can always lurk my timeline but I’d love to e-meet you so please sign up. Or poke around the Confessions of a Sable Fan Gyrl Tumblr and leave a question in my Ask box (the really juicy, cuss-word filled ranting will be done there). The WOC Survival Kit & my other friends will be updating on a regular basis.
In other words, I’m around. I’m married to the E-Game, after all. I’m just cheating on it with Ms. Diss. Respect my mistress.
Till next time (& I’m stealing from @MdotWrites on this one but it’s inspired by @Nnedi):