Saturday, September 22, 2018


I'm not sure if I should share this story. It doesn't seem like the rest of the #whyIdidntreportit stories. But I want others to know how much the belief that we won't be believed, or that we deserved what happened to us.

I reported a crime the night my maniacal, mentally ill ex boyfriend caught me in a dark parking lot after work and forced me into a car at gun point two days after I broke up with him. I reported the fact that he had a deadly weapon and that he threatened to use it on me. What couldn't be reported was the fact that I wondered if he was there to rape me, that I had to ask him if that's what he was there to do. I even told the cops that I had cheated on my boyfriend- something that had happened some time before was probably completely unrelated to the incident and to our breakup. I had to explain it somehow. In the moment, I was grasping at straws to understand why it happened to me, why I was still alive. Yet I offered infidelity as an excuse, an explanation, a reason why this man was mad at me.

There were other times. With other men, in other lives. Rape-y things, borderline things, sexual assault things. And lets be realistic- I know of no law that would have made those grey areas a crime. But I wouldn't have reported- because he had kids. Because he would have gone back to jail. Because I would have had to go back to court to testify. Because I had already quit one job that wouldn't give me time off to testify. Because testifying against one domestic abuser is enough emotional work for one lifetime. Because- how could I be a repeat victim? I was lucky enough to have rolled the dice with the system once, and the system won once, and no one gets lucky reporting crimes against them twice.

Thursday, May 24, 2018

Human Portrait 2 12/7/16

Written 12/7/16

St Louis, August 2016. Walking from my hotel to downtown after sleeping off a hangover through the general session of day two of Younique Convention '16.

I had reached the downtown office district, and was walking toward the convention center. A gentleman in a motorized wheelchair flagged me down, and asked me to open a door for him. It was a side door off the main entrance to an office skyscraper, like the security door aside from a revolving door. I went to pull open the door for him, but he offered a key to open the door. It was the type of door you have to unlock , pull open, and then disengage the key from.

I remarked, "This isn't very nice," to which he replied, "I come in on Saturdays to work [extra]." I unlocked an opened the door for him, remarking, "This isn't very convenient for you." He was appreciative, and we went our separate ways.

I haven't thought of him since then. A full six months. I wonder if he's still going into work on Saturday mornings and flagging down tourists to open his lobby door for him. 

Why I quit Younique 4/12/17

Written: 4/12/17

The day I unplugged from Younique was the day I attended a training in Minneapolis with a couple Midwest black status teams. A brand new rock star presenter shared her story of where she had been before Younique and what it had done for her life and her family. Pre-Younique, job loss, lawsuit, marriage problems, and depression. Not all stories are pretty. Some people's truths are messy, dirty, ugly, and embarrassing. But in owning your story comes power. Your power is in your story. This woman's story was messy, dirty, and awkward. She owned her story, she stood in her power, and she owned the stage. Afterwards, I went out for dinner with part of my upline's team. I sat at a table and listened to an orange and a black status presenter bash this woman for publicly airing some of the dirty parts of her story. Apparently it was embarrassing and shouldn't have been said publicly. One even suggested that the MC should have faked a "technical malfunction" to stop the woman. I turned and said to these women that this woman had every right to tell her story and that she had owned her story. They proceeded to smack talk about which presenters in their downlines would re-qualify that month. "shop talk."

Owning my own business isn't my American dream. I have a very strong emphasis on a separation between work and personal life. Work needs to stay at work, and not come home with me. I fought a very hard battle learning to leave work at work and not bring it home with me. That was hard learned, and I cannot regrade. A home business means I come home from work.... and work. Even with business hours or set work times, work is always in front of me, and there is always the opportunity to work more. It literally can't be left somewhere else.

Everyone says you have to keep politics, negativity, and controversial subjects off your wall so not to offend potential cusotmers. I've always said if someone was offended by my politics, I don't need their businesses. I don't need to worry about not offending everyone. I can't please everyone. I have issues I care about. I'm an American first. I kept politics and negativity off my wall for over a year but then 11-9 happened: the election. I can no longer be quiet. Probably 90% of black status presenters are religious women who post about their faith, god, and taking their children to church. As an atheist, this offends me. How is religion not included in their list of offensive subjects? 

Growing up homeschooled: what I'm thankful for

Ok, so I didn't have much of a childhood. More of my memories are of adult-level learning and work experiences. But I am still proud of how I was raised- homeschooled by a stay-at-home mom, raised on a farm, by devout and sometimes radical parents. I learned alot of things that kids don't learn going to public school or playing video games. I've been saying this for a long time, but as I'm coming to terms with how I was raised, I'm choosing to focus on the things I do appreciate. Yes, there were plenty of monsters under the bed, but I refuse to dredge those up every day.

What I learned growing up homeschooled, an ongoing list:

Taking notes
sitting still
how to sift flour for an angel food cake
how to make & measure curtains
handwriting a letter
selling myself- because as a homeschooler, i always had to 'prove' myself to everyone else
how to converse with several generations
that i didn't have to do everything everyone else was doing
I learned how to explain myself to the self-appointed truancy officers and sell myself to homeschool-skeptics.

Battle marks January 2017

Written on the day of the first Woman's Solidarity March in Saint Paul in 2017.

Its 3AM CST here, and I can't sleep, not only because of my insomnia, but my mind and heart are full of the sights and experiences I've seen today. Today I participated in my first march, the sister solidarity Women's March in St Paul, MN. We were blessed with wonderful weather, no counter-protesters, and a wonderful crowd. I've certainly seen and heard things that won't soon leave me. We came home hours ago and have spent the rest of the day recovering, relaxing, and basking in the beautiful sights of women around the world marching with us.

As I sit here in the early morning quiet, broken only by the Netflix documentary playing in front of me and a few lone marchers or partyers on the street below, I'm struck by the marks of battle I'm carrying on my left arm. The scars of being a woman, and the marks of the march are still clearly visible on my outstretched arm. I'm 25 years old, and starting to develop that under arm flab, but I'm still quite fond of my arms. A few days ago I had my birth control implant replaced in my upper arm, so my upper arms sports dual band-aids and several bruises. I'm still nursing that new implant.

On my forearm I have written the phone numbers of the friends I marched with- precautionary steps we took in the event of getting separated or loosing our cell phones. It'll wash off soon. For the moment though, these things are beautiful to me. A reminder of what it means to be a woman in 2017. And I'm one of the lucky privileged ones. That fact hasn't escaped me during the entire day of marching and reflection on the reasons why millions of women came out in masse today.

But now, I'm going to turn down the lights, prop up my still sore upper arm, and reflect on the brilliance of what was accomplished today. 

Victims or Victimizers

Twitter user Nikhita Nookala said "mass shooters are never victims. they lose that card when they murder innocent people."

It reminded me of my ex, playing victim in court. Mentally ill, abused as a child, confused, having already served time.... He told a sob story. He was abused as a child, probably mentally ill, spent time in and out of jail. He needed services as a child, young adult, convict, and sexually deviant and immensely troubled adult. None of that excused what he did to me. None of that made him any less a perpetrator. That day in court, he was a criminal. While I know the "why" of his crimes, that makes him no less my abuser. Nothing that happened to him diminishes his crimes. That day in court, he was a hideous, conniving, pre-meditating monster. He is a would-be murderer, manipulator, liar. He destroyed me, robbed me of my safety, security, almost my life. For the rest of his life, he will be a criminal, monster, abuser. Every officer, therapist, social worker, employer will now treat him as a criminal. Which is what he deserves. He is still a victim, but first and foremost, he'll be a criminal. Someone to be afraid of. Someone treated with protocol, distance, caution. The deference that victims are treated with he will never receive. He is no longer a victim. He's a kidnapper.

Tuesday, February 13, 2018

It occurred to me that I want to record some of the letters I'm writing, and that others might be interested in reading them. So, here's the email I sent to the members of the Judiciary Committee today.

"I am writing to oppose S446 that is currently before the Judiciary Committee. I think that this laxing of gun regulations is a terrible idea as our country faces a gun violence crisis. This legislation has been sponsored in part by the NRA and for that reason alone, I would oppose it. As a victim of domestic violence and gun violence, I don’t want any legislation that would make it easier for an abuser to cross state lines and commit an assault or murder. As a Minnesotan, I don’t want other states deciding what gun carriers my state must accept. I ask that you vote no on S446 and do not pass this bill on to the Senate."