Tag Archives: journeys

I Chose to Live


I think about dying every day.  It’s not the type of thing I talk about—not that I like talking about myself all that much, anyway.  But it’s not the type of thing that there are words for.  Even if I did have the words, there aren’t ears to listen.  And even if there are ears to hear, it’s not something people would understand.

I don’t want to stay alive, but I know I have to.  I have to live because it is the only way I have to “protest” the injustices against people of color.  I have to live because this world will not get better, and I cannot leave my black siblings surrounded by hate on all sides.  I have to live because my queer black family needs know that they are not alone.  I have to live for all those invisible identities that are no less real for society’s refusal or inability to see.  I have to live because they will be killed.  I have to live because they may kill themselves.

Can you imagine the pressure?

I don’t have hope.  Not anymore.  Not in this life.  All my hope lies beyond the grave, and that is why I chose the skull.  I choose it as my end goal, my reward.  Death will be a grace, a sweet relief; it will be rest at last.  And whatever they make of me, whatever dishonor or erasure that will be mine to keep, I will be safely away.  Will I be asleep?  I don’t know.  There’s a little poem I like to say to myself.

 

and when I die

death and I

will both

be laughing

 

It’s my reminder that as much as I want to die, the best way to do it is by living well.  Living a full life.  Earning my rest.  I will never stop fighting until death comes for me.  And even then, I’m not entirely sure if I will go willingly.  I don’t need to live, but other people need me to.  If the world is getting worse, and if I can offer hope by living a little longer, then I will do so.

My very existence is a middle finger to norms, standards, stereotypes, labels, and categories.  I am nameless.  I am inconsistency.  I am ambiguity.  I am clarity and confusion.  I am comfort and cancer.  I am question, I am answer, I am dissonant resolution.  I am already dead, and now I live as a restless spirit, puppeteering this broken body in a dance on Death’s grave.

Advertisements