“January 13, 2008: Me and dad clashed again today cuz I wanted to come home early to do homework and chores after 1st service. He was talking about me putting dance before church and homework and shit. He’s got it all twisted. At least I was thinking about getting it done. He doesn’t understand the importance of the company. Writing is a good way of expressing my feelings. I feel like I can let it out and talk about it. Now, I will proceed to do pushups and listen to yoga music.”
There were many times that my dad threatened to take me out of dance or said that I was prioritizing dance over other more important things in life. First of all, the dance company was a part of school. It was an actual class. It seemed like he had a problem with me committing to after school rehearsals, but no problem at all with Ann having basketball practices. I was better at academics than her so I didn’t understand why he thought dance was getting in the way of school. When said or did something that he didn’t like, he would threaten to pull me from the dance company, which was the one thing I was passionate about. It was very manipulative, and off base, since I was not a problem child. I had asked to go home and do homework and chores, for crying out loud, after already attending one church service. The second church service was just a repeat of the first!! This kind of behavior towards me left me feeling like I wasn’t safe to love anything. I couldn’t love Harry Potter, or Twilight (mom banned me from reading these series or watching the movies because they were “evil”), or dance, and god forbid I liked a boy. It was dangerous to love anything except for god. They even threatened to take away my iPod if I had too much secular music or could not hear them speaking in a normal tone when I was listening to it.
“January 14, 2008: 6:34PM: My stomach/insides hurt so bad. It started in 4th period and lasted all through the three hour practice. We learned a new rally dance! It was hip-hop to the maximum, that song was so fast! It was the fastest that we have ever learned. Some people were getting really frustrated. Well, I’m gonna do my best.”
“9:21PM: I try to picture myself as a child in Asia who doesn’t come from a good family and came to America to get educating and is staying in a boarding house. That’s fun!”
I was using my imagination to self-soothe and cope with living in a house that didn’t feel safe or welcome, though I do realize it sounds stereotypical and insensitive.
“January 15, 2008: Today I was listening to some of the junior and senior girls talk about their sex lives, like how many times they’ve done it and how it hurts the first time. Interesting!”
“January 18, 2008: We’re watching High School Musical 2. Then we’ll watch… The Island! We got it from blockbuster. We’re about to watch it! It’s now my 2nd favorite movie. It’s a Michael Bay film just like Transformers.”
“12:49PM: The movie was almost as good the second time. Ewan McGregor, or in the movie, Tom Lincoln 6-Eco, is so hot. He was 34 or something, but the way his body looks in black is… wow. If I had my own DVD player or a laptop, I would watch it over and over. “
The first time I saw The Island was in honors Biology. I was so thankful to the teacher for letting us watch it because it was an action packed PG-13 movie loosely related to biology. At least he didn’t see us as children and make us watch something rated G. It was finals time so I’m guessing we didn’t have any curriculum left after taking our final.
“January 23, 2008: We performed at M.T. Elementary. We were just kind of playing around, not really that serious. We still did great though. Although, there were a lot of mess ups. Jet tripped and landed with his hands on the piano in one of the wings. You know that sound when you press a bunch of keys at once?”
“January 25, 2008: I’m going over Kay’s house tomorrow and we’re going to go to the movies with Leah. Tomorrow I have practice from 11AM to 4PM. I’m going to her church. I have to get up at 8AM to do my chores though. Not to mention homework. I should take it with me.”
“January 27, 2008: I spent the night at Kay’s house. Leah was there. They think I’m a white girl. We went to the movies and saw P.S. I Love You. Lots of kissing. We saw the back of a guy fully naked. I went to her catholic church. It’s very traditional. I’m sickish from her cat.”
Kay and Leah were both half black, and half white. They called me white because I was (and still am) articulate. Back then I was also innocent, painfully shy, and liked to do the right thing all the time.
“My family went to Celebrate Recovery. It was cool being home alone. Mom and dad were getting on my nerves. I actually thought I missed them, then I got in the car with them and reality hit me again. They’re not a joy to be around. Kay’s mom was way better. I just missed being in my own room with my own bed and stuff. “
“January 30, 2008: 10:05PM: Herman asked me to go out with him on Friday. He said I’m a pretty girl with glasses. Two guys that Shelly knew were hitting on us during passing period. Two days ago after school I rode in the car with Ryan McGee! I know. Really bad. He’s a 17-year-old senior. We just went from the parking lot to the performing arts center. I walked home from there cuz he had practice. I could have made it home faster on foot but it was raining and I couldn’t say no to him. It’s gotta be my hair. Cornrows half way, wavy in the back. I look good. My confidence is way higher too. I’m actually talking to more guys. I’m reading a good book too.”
“February 3, 2008: There was a rally on Friday. I did okay. When I get nervous, my facials aren’t that great. I think. I couldn’t tell if the audience liked it. I liked it. Then the BSU had to go after us. There was only 6 people.”
The BSU was the black student union. The club wasn’t too active, but there was a hip hop dance team that had strong dancers. They performed around campus a lot.
“February 10, 2008: 2:20PM: I went to homecoming last night. There was a 7 hour practice for mainstage that day. I had to get there at 8AM to put up bio blurbs. Practice started at 9AM. We ran through the show twice. I hurried home. Mom gave me one of her dresses but I had to wear a belt cuz it was a little big. She twisted my hair in about an hour. When I got there, I got in line with Sam, Dawn, Nicole, and another girl. I cut a few people. I hung out with them, then with Shelly and the Black girls. Wow, the Black guys were checking us out. I shouldn’t have worn white underwear. Not that my dress was that short. I had a wedgie the whole time too. Then I hung out with Kaley. She wanted to dance with Ben really bad. I ditched Sam. She just wanted Taylor Ketchup. He was occupied with a girl he met the day before. Lynn acted like she didn’t know me. She is so caught up in herself. She can’t even dance. Her dress was plain and white. She did this stupid bounce thing the whole time. She was freaking with this one girl she probably had a crush on. I still haven’t danced with a guy. Oh well.”
“I just noticed I don’t really have a group of friends. Danny and I made eye contact. He had on a sexy black hat tilted to one side. He and Taylor Ketchup were freaking and making out with two girls they met the day before or that day. Taylor Ketchup does that every dance. I saw Adam and Bryan. Adam sang a song to Licia. I had no clue he could sing. He and Bryan were kind of oddballs. They don’t dance like everyone else does.”
“March 22, 2008: Not much has happened. 80’s dodgeball was this Wednesday. I won for best costume. My hair was in a fro-looking thing. It’s spring break now. Lynn came over from Tuesday to Wednesday. Mom twisted my hair in extensions. It looks cool and feels light and soft. We just watched Facing the Giants. It’s a movie about faith in god. It’s so inspirational. David, a character, needed to believe so he could kick a goal. He fell in the process, but he did it.”
Yep, that’s the kind of stuff I used to watch. “He needed to believe so he could kick a goal” (insert eye roll). That’s not how life works, though I used to think it did. I thought that if things were going wrong, it was my fault because my faith wasn’t strong enough.