Lesson #306: People will talk, but you decide.


People will always say things about you.

They will say things that are unfair. They will come to conclusions when they know nothing about you. They will say things that don’t make sense, or things that do—but hurt anyways.

And the thing is, it’s not just people you don’t know. Sometimes it’s the people you do know, and that’s when it hurts the most.

As someone who is black and female, I’ve heard a lot of shit in my life.

My hair is not good enough. But when it is? “It’s fake.” I can’t do this, or be that. Why? It’s written on the color of my skin. “Why do you talk so white?” Because I’m black, and apparently if the way I talk is not fitting enough, there’s no way I can be someone of my kind. “Cover up that cleavage.” The boys are looking, but it’s my responsibility to stop their gaze. “Pull down that dress, it’s too short.” I’m 20, but did you want to call my mother and send me home to change? (Body shaming other women is awesome, isn’t it?) “You’re not aggressive enough.” But when I am, it’s unlike me. I’m not standing up for myself, I’m just bitchy. “It’s a good thing you’re pretty.” Because that’s all that matters. Who cares about the brain?

It’s always one thing or another.

I’ve been hearing these for years. And some, today.

But I’ve realized something.

You can’t control what people say. And you can’t really choose if it bothers you, either. (You can pretend like it doesn’t—but if it does, it does.)

But you can decide how you will let it affect you.

You can be upset and sulk.

Or you can decide that, quite frankly, they aren’t shit.

Day 306.


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