When I listen to mushy KPOP, I think of myself. For a couple of years, I thought this was really weird. I thought it was self-gratuitous and pathetic. Yesterday, that changed. I was listening to GOT7’s “Never Ever” — a song about promising to protect someone — and I thought of myself.
A week or so ago, I got triggered. I was checking on the required books for my classes next quarter, all fine and dandy, and then I got to the books for my Diverse Lit class.
One of them was The House on Mango Street by Sandra Cisneros. The other was Beloved by Tony Morrison. For those of you who don’t know, Beloved has a lot of sex in it. And last time I had to read it for a class, I couldn’t.
I practically begged my English teacher to let me read another book, and she mocked me. She insisted that since I read Catcher in the Rye, surely I could read this. In fact, it was absurd that I couldn’t tolerate sex but could handle violence and other things. I didn’t tell her I’ve been sexually harassed before. I just went to my next class crying.
Luckily, my teacher in that class cared a great deal about me. She immediately took me outside when she saw me crying and asked what was wrong. I blubbered my experience to her, and she vowed to help me. Thanks to her, I got to read a different book. (I would sit in the library and read by myself when the class read Beloved.)
All of that pain came rushing back when I looked at Beloved on my computer screen, and I knew I wouldn’t be able to take it again. Getting bullied is one thing, but someone judging you for it — even of they don’t know your story — is way worse. I felt pathetic and weak for being so vulnerable to something that literally every other student had no problem with, and I never wanted to go through that again.
My brother was sitting on the bed with me when it happened. All he saw was me gasping and promising to talk to him later. I began searching frantically for another class I could take, but it turned out I didn’t have to look very far. God brought me a class that fulfilled the same credits, had one seat left, and the same exact schedule: Women and Gender Studies. I immediately swapped it and breathed a sigh of relief.
“Never gonna let you go…” When I heard this lyric, I thought of what happened last week and how I jumped to change the class to protect myself. Thank God, He was on my side…I think He wanted to protect me too.
~Live boundless. And never be ashamed to love yourselves.
P.S. The reason I titled this “Radical Love” is because my friend said I’m radical when I told her what happened. Apparently my story made her evening. ❤