I recently entered another contest on vocal.media in hopes to win money so that I may transform my blog into a nonprofit. Here’s my submission; these are my intentions.
Drop a stone into still water, and you will see its ripple effect. That’s what I want to be. I want to be an effective agent of social change, a stone dropped into water, propelled into the future by compassion—compassion for the self and compassion for others. My goal is to provide resources and a safe space for people to explore and understand their identities in relation to currently accepted social constructs in order to become more self-actualized, and by doing so, create a more empowering and compassionate world.
I long for this kind of new world, and I believe that compassion is the key:
Developing compassion for the self is not easy. It took me the first 25 years of my life to figure out that I am not what people have told me I am, that I am not broken because I didn’t fit their molds. Now at 27, even when I struggle, I have a community behind me because embracing my authentic self, and committing to loving myself for who that is, brought the right people to me and me to them. I want to bring resources, resources that I didn’t have growing up, to folk who are exploring their identities in context of the pervasive and harmful constructs that exist today. I believe through self-exploration and acceptance, in defiance of the wills that be, compassion can’t but flow freely. That compassion is contagious and empowers others. It strengthens our communities, and we grow together.
Within that compassion, I find it imperative for individuals to demand social change by decolonizing their points of view and the ways they interact with the world. I will admit that I am still learning, but that’s why community is so important, so that we can learn from each other as we grow together. I aim to leverage the privilege that I do have to raise the voices of marginalized communities and to usher in new understanding for those who are not affected by racism, sexism, transphobia, homophobia, etc. We do not exist in a vacuum; intersectionality needs to be the lens through which we perceive people and our interactions. History has its role in informing present actions, so that a brighter future may be achieved.
Maslow got it wrong:
In effort to decolonize our hierarchy of needs as perpetuated by Maslow himself, it’s important to recognize that he bastardized the “hierarchy” found in Blackfoot culture, which he visited in 1938. In Blackfoot culture, as discussed by Dr. Cindy Blackstock, self-actualization is an integral step toward cultural perpetuity, with cultural actualization between the two. Western concepts of this process has done a great disservice to humanity, as we are so far away from our roots in stark individuality, and suffering for it. Humans are social beings, and need community to survive and thrive. I’m not talking about thriving in the sense of having a CEO position that makes millions of dollars by exploiting the labor beneath, but thriving in the sense that all humans are cared for, fulfilled, and happy. The Blackfoot way of life is not a hierarchy, as each element mentioned works simultaneously and instantaneously. The individual cannot thrive without its community, and the community would not exist without each individual doing their part. But in a modern world where it is nearly impossible to live authentically without burden, it’s hard to imagine what a world would look like when all of us are self-actualized—cared for, fulfilled, happy—a world where we all know who we are outside of the social constructs that tell us who we’re supposed to be. In fact, if we were all self-actualized, I can almost guarantee that late capitalism would be a thing of the past and that harmful structures of knowing—racism, sexism, transphobia, homophobia, xenophobia, etc.—would cease to exist.
A means to get there:
This blog is my brain child, and people are my passion. This blog is to become a hub of information and a safe space for self-exploration. I do not wish to only share my life experience as a white, autigender nonbinary, pansexual, polyamorous, autistic w/ADHD, disabled human; there are many places to relate to others on the internet. My overarching goal is to provide resources in one place for gender, sexuality, neurodiversity, disability, and sex-body-kink positivity.
The safe space that this blog is to embody isn’t just for self-exploration, though. This is also where people can come to understand and embrace diversity in meaningful ways (ways in which to engage in anti-racism, diversity, equity, and inclusion work). Too often do people shy away from learning and growing because they’re afraid of being wrong. We must set shame aside in order to grow, and I intend on being another conduit out in the ether for people to set aside their preconceptions and biases, to ask questions, and to not shy away from being wrong. Because when we are wrong, there is always the choice to learn and grow. And when we know better, we can do better.
The End Game:
Gaining numbers of subscribers is equal to building community. I’m in the beginning stages, but people read what I have to say because they feel seen and/or they’re learning more about the world that they’re living in. One day in the not-so-far-off future, I am going to turn this blog into a nonprofit that benefits LGBTQIA+ youth and their families specifically, but it will also benefit surrounding communities at large, as I am committed to playing a role in creating a more equitable society for all.
I want to overwhelm the waters with ripples. No voice is too small when it comes to creating a more compassionate world. We need ALL the voices, and I am committed to being another stone dropped in the water, so that other stones may take form and add to the ripples as they drop too.