Wonderful writing! Such a subtle yet deeply important piece of this very large and unending conversation on race and what it means on the outside and the inside for each person.
Putting aside all the serious aspects of this article, as an aspiring makeup artist and makeup enthusiast I found myself getting excited thinking about the possibilities someone with your features could have with makeup. I've never seen a picture of you, but you've described yourself as someone who can very easily slide between the "typical looks" of different races, almost chameleon-like (only because we are all so programmed to categorize people based on looks). As an artist I imagine a photo series of one woman with different makeup in each picture but an uncannily different look in each one. It sounds like awesome fun to me! Just rambling from a makeup junkie :-p
You have a fan for life here - please keep us up to date on your career!
Hang in there...
Baba Yaga seriously needs to publish. I would buy!
Jia, you are awesome. I friggin love everything you write. This too.
I am in deep and reverent awe of you and the poignant telling of your story. I experienced sexual abuse at the hands of my father. I identify with you greatly and see you as a role model for all people who come from abusive homes. Sending much love to you.
@wander OMG i did the same thing! two weeks (16 days) in the UK after I graduated!! I went by myself too! Except I went to England and Scotland, not Ireland. I will always regret not staying longer.
@Judith Slutler fuck yes.
Once upon a time, a girl decided that she was different from her parents and her entire family. She realized that anyone who told her she was a bad person repeatedly from the age of seven was not worth her time. She went to college and while she had many amazing experiences, her most important one was becoming a person outside of her destructive home. When she failed to set out on her own after college, she had to confront the reality that she was permanently damaged by the upbringing that she almost escaped. While she had a good soul, she never learned how to be a friend or a nice person because she had always been told she was no good. And so, she had no connections to draw upon and found herself friendless when she needed those things desperately. Staring out the window of her childhood bedroom, the girl realized that her hardest work was still ahead of her.
For a few years, I used to live like this. Only I wasn't a sex worker, I was a college student. It rings very very true to me. I had those friends, and then not at all. That's how quickly those friendships dissolve once you cease to live the way they do. Now that I have a boyfriend and I've graduated, things are very very different. But not a day goes by where I don't go back to the summer of 2010 when I was 21, thin, free and heartbroken and doing whatever the hell I wanted to.