Boring Adult Things, Uncategorized

Balancing Act

I’m in a pub in Erie, PA, and I’m bone tired.

Working remotely has its perks, for sure: Brandon and I were able to take a trip to Erie to visit family with the little man, and work during the day. Cameron is having an absolute blast with his Gabby and is being spoiled rotten with attention. He’s loving every second.

Seeing family is nice; I just wish I could shake this permanent fog I’m in these days. I can’t sleep (and it’s not due to the baby), I’m full of anxiety, and things just don’t have the luster they used to. If it was feasible, I’d just take a week and spend it in bed watching Netflix (and probably gaining 10 pounds).

I think what has me down and lost is the added emotional labor that comes with being a mom. As women, there’s always this need to manage all the spinning plates: so many things we aren’t paid or acknowledged for that just keep lives running. Doc appointments, bills, cleaning things when they’re gross, stocking the fridge, ordering the pet food, feeding the pets, paying the pet-sitter, vet visits, budgeting, taking the clothes to the dry cleaner’s, and on and on and on. It’s not that Brandon wouldn’t do these things if asked… it’s that I have to remember every single one.

Having a child compounds that labor tenfold. The laundry multiplies. The dishes, too. The doctor’s appointments increase. The finding and balancing of childcare can be its own full-time job. Is the baby gaining weight? When did he last eat? He hasn’t pooped in 3 days. Should we feed him prunes? Is he too young for purees? He dropped his paci; can I just lick it and give it back? Does that make me a crappy mom? Am I giving him too much attention so he can’t adjust to being by himself? Am I giving him too little attention, so he won’t attach? Why am I not producing enough breastmilk? Why does he not want to take the breast? If I give him formula, am I a bad or lazy mom? Am I traveling for business too much? Does it mean I don’t care about my career if I don’t want to be away for 3 nights to do work? Brandon has the 2-seater car and I need to go to an appointment; how will we arrange nanny share pickup? Did the cat sit in the baby’s seat, and if so, is it dirty now? We’re out of formula. We ran out of formula too quickly. That means he’s not getting enough breastmilk. We’re in the car and he’s screaming; should I pull over or tough it out? And a million other things.

It’s exhausting. I have a new appreciation for stay-at-home moms these days, realizing I could never be one. I love my career and I need it. I think to some degree, it keeps me sane and mentally challenged in a different way.

I am fighting this inclination to succumb to being absorbed by my child, and then on the flip side, I also have this weird guilt about wanting to have my own life. It’s a strange dichotomy. I really like traveling, but I hate being away from my baby. I am forcing myself to take advantage of opportunities to do things that fulfill me, as I think it’s healthier for both Cameron and me. But this layer of guilt over every little thing was something I wasn’t expecting. I’m just so tired.

I need to get another bucket list going, so I have something to focus my energy on and to get me up and moving each day. My business is going great and after a short dip in hours, I’m slated to be back full-force next week. I’m really adjusting to–and loving–life as a freelancer, and I’m getting more confident in my abilities to drum up business. But the mental anguish is so tiring. I just want to feel normal again. Maybe this is the new normal.


Want to know where this Millennial’s money goes?

There seems to be a rumor in this country that Millennials are frivolous with their money.

That may be true sometimes. I do get Dunkin’ Donuts. I do travel. I can confidently say I’ve never bought avocado toast.

But let me just give you a quick picture of monthly expenses and let you do the math for whether this is affordable on a couple entry-level salaries. And keep in mind, this is Atlanta – not NY or San Francisco.



Mortgage/Insurance/Taxes – $1200 (going to $1450 in a couple months due to tax assessments). Our house was very inexpensive, intentionally.

Childcare – $1400 (a nanny 2 days a week and a nanny share 3 days a week, covering a total of 23 hours/week. He couldn’t get into daycare despite being on 2 waiting lists since I was 6 months pregnant. FT daycare would have been $1300/month.)

Family Health Insurance – $1000

Car Insurance – $100

Life Insurance – $90

Vet care and heartworm/flea meds (pro-rated average) – $100

Utilities (internet, streaming services, electric, gas, car gas, water) – $450

Cell phones – $150

Car payment – $400 (we pay extra on this each month; we have a used Prius and the other car is paid off)

Food – $300 (if we’re frugal and eat only at home)


That’s $5,090 per month in basic, base expenses for a healthy family of 3. We could have bought a cheaper car. We could, I suppose, not have smartphones. We could not take care of our pets. But there isn’t a lot to shave off here.

Now consider that the average entry-level job in our industry is going to pay $40k. After taxes (at a low tax bracket), that’s maybe $2500/month. Multiply that by 2 people and you’re not even covering the most basic expenses each month, much less putting anything into savings.

Where does Millennials’ money go?

A broken, crappy system that means your childcare costs more than your mortgage and your health insurance is a close third.

Democrats advocate for a universal healthcare plan and more childcare program options for parents. Housing subsidies and stronger support for the middle class, instead of the top 1%.

Tell me why you voted Republican again? And tell me where I’m wasting my money?


He’s Here

We are a little over 1 month out from the big 3-0 birthday that this blog has been leading up to, and so much has changed over the course of 4 years.

I suspected we might decide to have a child before this birthday, but even a year ago, I had started to doubt it would happen on that timeline. We still didn’t quite feel ready. But the universe had another plan for our family, and we welcomed our beautiful angel, Cameron, on 2/18/17.

I am a little cynical by nature and there’s not a lot I don’t comfortably joke about. Brandon and I kid each other about very dark subjects and have trouble doing sentimental things without a wink and a nod of irony. Throughout my pregnancy, we joked about the little “mofo” inside of me, not because we didn’t love him or care, but because that’s just who we’ve always been as jokesters. We’re that way with our pets, with each other.

Suddenly, we met Cameron and I couldn’t bring myself to joke darkly or to be quite so flippant. All the insistence I’d had that I wouldn’t lose myself, that he’s wouldn’t be all I wanted to talk about or think about, flew out the window. Brandon and I both unabashedly celebrate poops and call him sweet nicknames like “Squeaker,” “Squish,” and “AngelBaby.”

I am still a businesswoman. I look forward to returning to work.

I am still an artist. I write songs; I write books.

I am still Alexis. I am just better now.

And so is the world, because Cameron is a part of it.

I realized he was with me all this time. Spiritually, maybe, forever. Physically, for a long while. He made history as part of the Women’s March in January. He’s been to five states already. He’s been to heavy metal karaoke and Hedwig and the Angry Inch. He loves podcasts, because he’s listened to them for ten months now.

Cameron hasn’t deterred me from realizing my dreams; he’s contributed to them. No one is more surprised than me. He is my sidekick, and I am his. Cameron will see musical theater, travel the world, fight for others, and become this amazing human being that’s so much different and better than both Brandon and me. We can see it already, and we are so blessed to witness it.

This little being I was so sure would disrupt my life has done so. And I am so much better for it. He is a perfect little being who will drive us nuts and we’ll love him unconditionally anyway. Cameron is incredible, beautiful, wonderful, hilarious, sweet, adorable, and heart-meltable.

And with that, I welcome 30. With a slightly unfulfilled bucket list, but close enough.

Because my bucket is currently overflowing, I look about 40 years old,  and my boobs are at my knees and leaking onto the floor.

And I couldn’t be happier about it.


Post baby plans, for those interested


Hi everyone,

Brandon and I have been discussing post-baby plans and we wanted to update any family and friends who might plan to visit our little bundle after he arrives. We’re excited to see you and hope you’ll bear with us during this transitional time when we expect to be exhausted and overwhelmed for a good while. 🙂


We look forward to sharing Cameron with the world, but we ask that you consult our anticipated timeline before making plans to visit. Thank you so much for all the love and support!



We will send an all-clear message out via text and/or Facebook once Cameron arrives, and visiting hours for family and friends will likely be 4-7pm during the days we are in the hospital, if you’d like to stop by (no need to arrange specifics with us in advance as long as you’re coming during these times). Our update will let you know if the things change but that’s our plan for now.


Should you plan to visit us in the hospital or in the first two weeks (for immediate families), please ensure you are up-to-date on your TDAP shot. MinuteClinic offers these for around $30, I think, if you have insurance. Note that it takes 2 weeks for the TDAP to kick in.


Week 1 at home:

We ask that guests do not come by at all during this time as we adjust to our new lives and bond as a family. My mother will be around to help with logistics each day for a few hours, but otherwise, we’d like to keep this time private. Although if anyone has a burning desire to take the dogs on a walk or have them at their house, let us know. 🙂 We are stocked up on food and supplies and although we appreciate your love and support, we want to spend this time recovering and bonding.

Week 2 at home:

We ask that our immediate families (only) stop by the house during this time, with a 4-7pm window as well. During this time, Bonnie may also be helping us for a few hours a day as well with logistics if her schedule allows.

Week 3 at home:

Extended and immediate families are welcome to visit from 5-8 each day.


Week 4 at home:

Friends and all family are welcome to visit from 5-8 each day.


We may be more comfortable with guests earlier on than we anticipate, but we’re taking a “better safe than sorry” approach since we expect to be completely wiped out and we want to be as fresh-faced as possible when we welcome guests. We don’t mean to be rude, we’re just kind of private people and we also want Cameron’s immune system to be as strong as it can be in his first weeks of life.


I should also note that we cannot accommodate any overnight visits, as our guest room is now Cameron’s room and there is no bed anymore. The couch is out in the open in our main living space. I also intend to be topless a lot, which is uncomfortable for all of us.


Should you need our help with hotel or travel arrangements, please let us know in advance so we can help there (which we’re more than happy to) – we’d love to see everyone but our house is just too small and not equipped for overnight stays moving forward.


Alexis and Brandon


Pregnancy Is Gruesome

Working in the industry, I’m no stranger to internet targeting. I normally don’t mind. But there’s something highly invasive that happens online when you’re pregnant; a creepy little ticker that tries to normalize the horrible things happening to your body, that’s delivered to you weekly based on your e-behavior.

First, there’s the countdown.

10 Signs Your Bloody Show Is Coming!!

Welcome To Week 33! Can You Still Breathe?

Why It’s Okay That You Pee Yourself

Mucus Plugs: What’s the Dealio?
Then, there are the unwelcome Pinterest posts. What once offered pins like What To Pack for Thailand and World’s Most Magical Book Nooks has been replaced by progressively heinous images of breech babies, organ smashing, and heads literally popping out of vaginas. Look, Pinterest, I get enough of this from my nightmares and well-meaning friends asking “how scared are you?” and describing how awful C-sections are (thanks, jerks, and yes, it’s rude) to have you, my aspirational platform, turn on me, too.

Finally, my favorite is every platform trying to describe your baby’s every experience as something magical as well. I’m sorry, this junk is barbaric, and if we saw a stray animal do it, we’d call animal control.
This week, your little nugget is growing his coating of fur!

This week, your precious angel has shed his fur and is peeing at least one cup of urine a day inside your body.

This week, your sweet peanut is swallowing amniotic fluid, which includes his pee and all that fur he shed.

This week, your adorable cherub will arrive and greet you with his first bowel movement, full of fur.
I’m sorry – I’m into this baby and everything, but there is no way to convince me that’s not gross.

Pregnancy is weird enough without the constant reminders your body is turning on you and your child is basically a small Gremlin parasite. So, pregnant friends, a word to the wise, clear your cookies and don’t talk to unhelpful people. I prefer to remain blissfully ignorant of my bloody show’s 10 signs and greet this child without the foreknowledge that he’s basically eaten his own hairball. Cool?

Boring Adult Things, Uncategorized

300 Before 30

I have never been busier. I like being busy, but there’s certainly a balance to strike.

I’m booked pretty solidly as far as work through the end of the year, balancing three clients simultaneously and making sure all are feeling the love. Come January, my hours cut back a bit, which is probably a good thing, as I’ll want to be nesting while also dragging around a full-on extra human strapped to my front.

There’s so much preparation – the holidays and gifting, vet appointments, doctor appointments (I’m changing OBs and hospitals at the 11th hour, NBD), daycare shopping/applications, updating wills, errands, finishing the bathroom remodel, invoicing, budgeting, thank you notes, travel (4x trips over 3 weeks), getting the nursery ready (while it’s filled with remodel crap), and political activism. I am drowning a bit.

However, I see the light at the end of the tunnel. Head down for December and sprint from weekend to weekend. We’ll get there.

In the meantime, it’s been clear how much love is in our lives. I am naturally very resistant to favors and help; feeling like an imposition makes me extremely uncomfortable, and I hate feeling even remotely incapable. But being in the situation we’re in, Brandon and I are having to lean on others a bit. His mom planned a lovely baby shower for us last week, and we were overwhelmed by the amount of love his extended family brought forward – including many people I hadn’t even met before. This coming weekend, we have a maternity photo shoot and another baby shower my amazing friends and family are throwing. It would be impossible not to feel blessed.

My priorities have shifted from trying to tackle my “list before 30” (partially because some of those things are physically impossible at this point), but I’m nevertheless still running the long game. Life has never been crazier but I’m also, against all my instincts, welcoming help from a few directions as we screech into the finish (or starting) line. So thank you to those wonderful people who are our support system. I hate asking favors. But I feel so lucky to have them delivered without even asking the question. I love you all.


Love Trumps Hate

Since the election, in between bouts of interminable sadness, I have:

  • Called my senators to oppose the appointment of Steve Bannon
  • Emailed my electors about their upcoming vote
  • Called Rep John Lewis to thank him for his service
  • Gone to my first neighborhood meeting
  • Worn a safety pin
  • Voted in favor of keeping the ACA via Paul Ryan’s phone poll (despite the long pre-recorded diatribe he made me sit through before getting to it)
  • Put out a “Love Trumps Hate” yard sign
  • Donated to Planned Parenthood (in the name of a Trump supporter – thanks, Kevin)
  • Made mashed potatoes for a local teacher appreciation lunch
  • Bought lunch boxes for a couple of kids from an impoverished family

I am taking this opportunity of immense grief to be motivated to action.

I’m not giving up, and neither should you.


I’m Sorry, Baby. There Is No Hope.

I wanted to write a post I could share with our growing baby Cameron one day; a message of hope and unity that reassures him not to worry. I wanted to tell him people are inherently good, and that the sun will rise again, and there is still worth in being a person who cares about people, a person who defends good.

But I’m not sure I believe those things today.

Today, it’s the End of Days. This is a travesty this country hasn’t seen in more than a hundred years. This is the precipice of civil war. This is the brink of worldwide disaster. This is evil incarnate.

I also wish I could say I believe anything I’m saying is hyperbole, or an overreaction. That it’s a response to the immediate aftermath of half of our country electing the least-qualified, most despicable human being we’ve ever encountered in American politics. I wish I could say it was fueled only by the anger that everyone who wasn’t a white man was told on Tuesday that they don’t matter.

But it’s not. It’s all of those things, but it’s not just those things. This is a tragedy. This is the end of our world as we know it.

Cameron may spend his life dodging the reality of life in this country, and he may not spend large chunks of it in this country at all. He may very well grow up in poverty. At a minimum, he will grow up in a world in which he is reminded that his rights matter more than his neighbor’s. But to be perfectly honest, that is now the least of my concerns.

I can’t speak the man’s name who will be leading this country. It’s still too painful to know in my heart that this world is not only full of hate, but that in the perhaps even more important war between stupid and smart, we lost. In the battle between good and evil, evil reigns.

This person who will be leading our country has built a fortune on the backs of those who voted him into office. He has exploited them, used them, and wrung them out like tissues for his own personal economic gain (and often, even more ironically, his disastrous financial failures). He rose to power by living in an age that values rhetoric, celebrity and swagger over truth. He feasted gleefully on the disenfranchised anti-intellectuals.

What’s worse, his cold open was to the most deplorable fringes of society, leveraging lunatics to project his messages more publicly. Yesterday, those nonhumans were justified in feeling superior to all the groups they hate so much.

Half of the country–the uneducated white half, driven by men–have also voted to surround this elect with a group of politicians who will push legislation to his desk, legislation he and his VP will endorse, that takes social progress back ten decades. The checks and balances Bush removed from the Executive Branch will be exploited to the fullest potential, just as this elect’s taxes were exploited within an inch of their life to cost this country payment on a billion dollars of income he had graciously been forgiven by debtors. This unchecked power will lead decisions around economic policies, foreign relations, human rights, and war.

I look at men differently today. There is a fear now, a fear that I could be sexually assaulted with no recourse, a fear that I won’t be able to obtain birth control, a fear that very soon, a decision about whether or not to move forward with a pregnancy, no matter how early on–a choice I made six months ago–will no longer be an option because men decided it wasn’t my place. That if something awful happened to Cameron tomorrow, I would have to potentially carry him to term and deliver a stillborn baby, or a baby that wouldn’t live more than a few hours, or die myself, because white men in Michigan decided it was their right to make that call.

Today, I have an anger and a hatred for men like nothing I’ve ever experienced. I feel so fortunate to be married to a kind man who supports reality, who supports minorities and the underprivileged, and supports women. Because if I wasn’t, I would be painting all men with the same broad brush. It’s already hard not to do that.

The social unrest this whole disaster has created is terrible. It’s a justified horror. But that’s only the beginning of what’s to come.

The economy already began its implosion on the eve of this news. The world is not on our side, and may never be again. Our enemies are licking their chops and congratulating our new elect. Those who voted Red this year are cheering now, but will be losing whatever jobs they have in the months to come. They will lose their homes and see their taxes increased dramatically as Wall Street pilfers their pockets. Big businesses will pay minimal to no taxes and cripple the system. The world will react to our plummeting dollar by reminding us that we reap what we sow.

The pathetic individuals who felt unheard last week celebrate today, but they are blind to the horrors that will hit them the hardest. And they will find that in the aftermath, the half that could even possibly help them will tell them to go fuck themselves.

I have always considered myself a tolerant and nonjudgmental person. Yesterday, I was reminded that I can only extend that love to those without intended malice in their hearts.

Today, there is no God.

No God of mine planned this.

There will be no forgiveness from me on; there will be no unity and peace and love for the other side. I will bind together with all the people who were wronged this week, the people who are smart enough to have seen this train coming long before it hit us (but never in a million years expected it would), and we will save ourselves. We will cry, we will lick our wounds, and we will have no sympathy for the pain the other side will endure at their own hands. Because we will be too busy getting our own asses out of this fire. And the thing we have going for us is that our collective IQ is above 80, so at least we have a shot.

I won’t say all the things I predict, because they are all dire and I’m feeling a little superstitious. I have yet to see much out there that predicts otherwise at this point. There is a real possibility that one of these days, the sun will not rise again. We have seen this history before, but never on an eve of the world balancing on such a precipice already. We are economically unsound worldwide. Our environment is crumbling around us. Today, we are all filled with rage. At this point in history, many countries have weapons that could wipe out the whole planet in moments.

So today, I can’t tell Cameron it will all be okay.

Today, I am apologizing to him that I’m bringing him into such a disgusting world.

Today, I regret creating him, not because I don’t love him – but because I do.


A Woman’s Worth

This year, a couple major life changes have happened: I started my own business and I got pregnant.

The welcoming of a child into our family is becoming more and more real. I can feel his kicks, his happy reactions, and I cry when I see the sweet ultrasounds or hear his heartbeats. I love seeing him thrash his tiny fists and get bigger each time we see the doctor. Our family is going to be so full with love, and even the animals are showing how attached they are to him already (Alice protects me even more now; MonkeyBaby keeps my tummy warm).

But there is another side to me, an important side that I refuse to diminish. A side I am extremely, fundamentally proud of and want to scream about from the rooftops. It’s the side that is thriving in spite of the physical and mental challenges my body is going through, and a side I desperately want to talk about more.

I am the president of my own company. I have become and independent contractor and been FT gainfully employed for the past 3 of 4 months – and am scheduled to in fact add clients to that roster, without losing the first, over the upcoming two months (one of which is PT permanent, from home, and at my full hourly rate). I am already looking toward expansion, and at minimum, an offsite personal workspace. I’ve navigated accountants and contracts and business licenses and pitches and invoicing. I have my own LLC, operating as an S-Corp, and I actually know what that means. I’m making more money than I ever have, and by a pretty large margin.

There is a terror inside of me that gainful employment won’t always come at the rate it is now. I expect a softer summer. There is a seasonality and a market trend to my industry, and I’m smart enough to know the pitfalls of being independent. Taxes are a sword in the heart. Figuring out healthcare isn’t easy, and I’ve now added the monthly cost of business insurance.

But the conversations I have about these things are few and far between. The fears and the proud moments and the strides in an unfathomably short period of time are falling by the wayside as every conversation turns to the responsibility I will add to my life in four months. My friends wonder why I’m not spending hours on Pinterest, browsing through costumes I’ll eventually dress the baby in for Halloween. It’s because I’m trying to welcome everything in its time. And right now, I’m excited about the incredible achievements I’ve made in my career… there’s still time to be similarly excited about this baby.

I love this baby, and I’m thrilled to be a mom. I’m terrified of what that will come with as well. I’m afraid of the expense, afraid of the sleeplessness, afraid of the selflessness. But I’m trying to do the thing I’ve never been good at and slow down to smell the roses around me. However long this lasts, my career is as good as it’s ever been right now. It may not be forever – and it may not be a choice forever. But it’s good right now, I’m busier than I ever have been with work, and I want to tell the world.

I love talking about the baby – all the weird things pregnancy brings, musing about the kind of person he’ll be, thinking about how we’ll spend holidays together as a family at home, melding traditions together. But I’m more than a vessel for a child, and in four months, I will be more than a mother. I will be a woman. A flawed, scared, sometimes selfish woman who’s balancing a shit-ton of stuff.

I will never be that mom who lives exclusively for her child. I want to raise him to be happy, thriving, independent, and self-sufficient. I want him to know that women are more than aides to men. I will never question my choice to continue working, as that’s a part of me I don’t want to lose. Trust me – I will never look down on a mom who chooses to make her whole life about raising a family, as that’s as noble a task as I can imagine and one of the most selfless choices a person can make. It’s just simply not mine.

I hope that after a couple years, I can start to once again have the conversations about the well-roundedness of life and how our child is now an important part of it (but not all of it). Because I’m fucking proud of myself right now, and I think that’s worth something. I just wish it was worth something to everyone else.


I Am A Privileged White Girl

I am a privileged white girl.

I have lived my life in only partial recognition of the special treatment I get for the color of my skin, often unaware of the inherent leg up it’s given me in life.

I have, arguably, a white name. Certainly a white last name. It’s the name on my resume. My pale white skin is my profile picture on social media and the first thing a cop sees driving my Prius around. It’s the picture on my AirBnB and the face I bring to job interviews. It’s the face I brought to classrooms and cheer tryouts and theater auditions. It’s the face of unearned privilege.

I didn’t ask for privilege. Much like exceptionally beautiful people don’t ask for special treatment or comped drinks; much like little people don’t ask to be stared at when they walk down the street because they look different.

You don’t notice when you’re given something others aren’t because that’s how you’ve always lived your life. But I am thankful for the curtain that’s been pulled back through social media that has allowed me a better glimpse into why my whiteness is a crutch and an inherent benefit. Because although I have actively tried my whole life not to treat anyone differently on the basis of their appearance, it’s hard to notice when that’s happening to me. I can’t control for the racism, intentional or subconscious, of other people.

My friends get pulled over for driving while black. This isn’t an exaggeration; every black person I know has been pulled over for essentially no reason at least once. Brandon and I never have. In fact, we’ve sped right past cops, with no retribution. We’ve never had our cars or bodies searched, or a gun pulled on us by an officer.

I’ve never been in a room in which someone said, “Let’s not hire this person because they are black, or an immigrant, or Indian.” Racism isn’t bold and blatant in most cases. It’s not a proclamation made to a room of people, an announcement of a phobic stereotype lurking in the backs of people’s minds. It’s probably not even something people realize they’re doing.

But there is no doubt in my mind that my resume name, social profiles, and my white face, have risen closer to the top of a candidate pile over someone who looks different than me. Much like I am positive I’ve been passed up for job opportunities because I was a woman, been paid half of what my male counterpart was making, and been rejected for a job opportunity because I’m pregnant (actually, those last two aren’t assumptions, they’re facts).

I cannot believe this is the world we live in. But what angers me more than my incredulousness that racism is still an issue is the way we respond to it nationally. There are many supportive white people behind Black Lives Matter, but there are also many who don’t understand what all the fuss is about. This was illustrated when an athlete made a peaceful protest at a game to basically say he can’t support a country that kills people who look like him and doesn’t prosecute. Colin Kaepernick didn’t make a violent protest or start some sort of mutiny. He simply, silently, said he was sick of the race issue in this country being ignored. And yet hundreds of thousands of white people took to social media to complain about his lack of patriotism and tell  him it wasn’t his place to protest. Um… if a cop shot your son in the back for no reason and the government did nothing about it, wouldn’t you lose a little patriotism, too? Patriotism doesn’t mean being proud of your country unconditionally. It means being proud because you’re in a country that warrants your pride.

It is simply sick that the United States allows laws to be passed, albeit thinly veiled, that discriminate against black people, especially those with lower incomes, being able to vote, move to districts with better education systems, have better access to jobs and healthy food, and raise their children safely. Many black families thrive in spite of the limitations and challenges placed on them, but it’s not without fighting a system designed to hold them back. Are we fucking serious, here?

I say all this as a privileged white girl who was once mugged at gunpoint by a black man. I know the support and environment I had growing up were different from his; I know his life clearly couldn’t have been easy; I know this troubled person wasn’t representative of everyone who shares his skin color.

I say all this as a privileged white girl who grew up in a town known for self-segregation, a town in which someone at my private school once sincerely asked me, “Why did you leave the public school? Too many black folks?” (Hence the start of my homeschooling and urgent exodus to college.)

I say this as a privileged white girl who recently had a tough conversation with her husband about whether to move to a better school district, and neither of us could stomach living in a homogenized neighborhood, being part of a “white flight” epidemic that is so profoundly unjustified and disgusting that we can’t imagine being lumped in with it.

I say this as a privileged white girl who, first and foremost, recognizes her inherent privilege and encourages others to do so. It’s only when you start to realize the daily shackles that are placed on those without your advantages that you realize where all the anger is coming from. And it’s only when you accept that you are given more than others that you can actively start to fight for them to receive the same as you.


P.S. I feel it important to note that I once said the words “all lives matter” publicly, not as a racist reaction to “black lives matter,” but as a pacifist. These killings of unarmed black men at the time had led to the shooting of several police officers, and it hurt my heart to see the completely justified anger of one group turn violent against another. I feared we were facing a civil war. I don’t agree with violent retaliation. I’m a flower-in-the-gun kind of girl. And I truly do believe that all lives matter. However, the reason we say that black lives matter isn’t to place one group of people on a pedestal over another. It’s because there’s already an inherent assumption in society that white lives matter, and if you can’t see that, you’ve got to merely open your eyes. We need to stress right now that just as we all know white lives matter… so do everyone else’s.