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We Meet Again

It’s been awhile since I’ve written something of any substance. Well, I did write some standup material but that’s a whole other issue. I have tons of excuses for why I haven’t written anything, but I forgot that the reason I loved writing in the first place was because it allowed me to be myself. I was able to write about anything I wanted without feeling judged or feeling the need for anyone to validate it. Since I last posted something on here, I have went through a lot of emotional such and such. Most of it probably brought on by myself, but hey, there’s no rulebook to life — unless you include some kind of religious script and to that I say, good for you. But honestly, there’s no strategy guide for how to go through life. I severely wish there was one. I suck at a lot of things and currently life seems to be one of them. With this knowledge, I still lift my head up and keep it moving, because progress is better than no progress. I guess. The last few times I did write, they were basically filled with a garbage dump truck worth of vulnerability. And while that’s perfectly fine, it’s hard to write that kind of material because of how emotionally exhausting it is for me. But now I am back with the same type of honest, vulnerable Kamari. Why, you may ask. Because it’s damn near impossible for me to vulnerable to a human being and this keyboard is all I have at the moment. I have tried to be vulnerable with people, but time and time again they have let me down. So in order to release this energy that I have had pent up inside of me for the past couple of months, hear I am again to deposit a piece of my soul into this post. 

I want to be vulnerable with a person so desperately, but I am afraid. I am afraid of them seeing me as weak and unworthy. As seeing me as what I am really am, which is just young kid who happens to have aged into a 22-year-old adult. I want to tell someone that my insecurities are cuts so deep that I don’t really think I will ever fully heal from them. I want to tell them that my heart aches from the struggles that my mother and sisters are experiencing. But all I have is this keyboard and my brain. And it sucks. 

I don’t want to get all “woe is me” because that’s not the case, really. I do have friends and family whom I’m very close to, but it seems that I don’t trust anybody enough to let them know what churns within. Life was a lot simpler when the only feelings I could express were sad and happy. I guess one of the parts of growing up, is allowing those around you to know that there is more than just the surface. Maybe growing up is finally realizing that the world doesn’t revolve around yourself and recognizing that there are people willing to listen and understand and console. You just have to be willing to open up to them. And by you, I mean me. 

Here’s my tattoo in the flesh

"My aunt said my skin too clean to mark it up…"

My family is staunchly against tattoos. I have a lot of female cousins with tattoos and there’s a permanent recording in my head of both my mother and my grandmother’s response to their body art. Look at you with those tattoos. Don’t you know your body is temple given to you from God. So, even I’m still shocked that I actually got a tattoo, because at some point I’m bound to hear the outrage of my family members.

For the record, I didn’t get a tattoo just to be a rebel, I actually got it because it’s something close to my heart. It’s located on the inner portion of my left bicep, a discreet, yet visible place. And it’s beautiful. At least in my eyes. I had been thinking about getting tattoos as young as 11. Granted, the thoughts weren’t of the serious variety, but they were there. It wasn’t until my senior of high school, where I had an idea of something that would be worth tattooing on my body. God is Love, Love is God. I had divulged my idea to a girl I was close to at the time, and she seemed to like it. I suggested that maybe we could both get it and she also seemed to like that as well. It wasn’t until the girl and I drifted apart, that I kind of soured on the idea of getting a tattoo.

Two years later, the idea of getting a tattoo swirled around in my head again. The core idea remained. But it had evolved. Instead of looking at tattoos, as just that, I began to look at them for their artistic and aesthetic qualities. My renewed idea took shape in the form of a partial sleeve – a tattoo that would cover up the bicep of my arm, like a sleeve. I shortened Love is God to Love is… . I was in a drastically different place mentally and spiritually then I was as senior in high school and I felt by leaving off God, it would allow me freedom to interpret whatever I felt love was at that time. The new addition was the idea of clouds, surrounded by stars with the moon hovering above it. Completely unrelated to the Love is…  portion, it represented both ambition and alienation. The saying goes, “the sky’s the limit.” Well, I wanted to soar past the sky. And the alienation is the moon itself, alone with no inhabitants, taking its place amongst the stars.

Once I had figured out the idea, I set a date. I decided I was going to get it done on my 21st birthday. As usual, things didn’t go as planned, which was probably for the best, because the day after my 21st birthday my car died. A couple of my friends who I told the idea to and who had also gotten tattoos themselves figured that I would renege on my promise. While they doubted my desires to get inked, I was waiting for the necessary funds to finally do it. During this time, I decided to scale back the idea. In the process of coming up with something that would fill the space of my arm, I lost some of the symbolism that made me want to get a tattoo in the first place. One day I was at my apartment and the idea struck me instantly: Love is with eight stars randomly assorted around it. Three stars would be shaded red, which is my favorite color, to represent each of my sisters, two stars would be partially shaded, representing both my mother and my aunt Jenae and three stars would be shaded black for my nana, granny and late great-granny, who passed away when I was 17. It made sense. Now all I had to do was find the place and set the date.

I finally lost my tattoo virginity on January 16th. And I am proud to say that I’m more than pleased with the results. While I haven’t told my family about my body art, I am sure they won’t be too pleased, but I believe they’ll appreciate the gesture. And in the end, when I’m old and withered, I will know without a doubt in my heart that love is located on my left inner bicep and the stars will remind me of all the love I’ve had the pleasure of experiencing in my lifetime.

Grades in correlation to sex life

This idea came from my good friend Martell Burleson.

  • If you’re getting A’s, you’re abstinent
  • If you’re getting B’s, you’re barely getting any
  • If you’re getting C’s, you’re getting cutty
  • If you’re getting D’s, you’re doing it daily
  • If you’re getting F’s, you’re … too much

P.S. Obviously this doesn’t apply across the board, but it’s entertaining nonetheless.

A Man without a Nation: Identity Part Duex

In the process of writing this, I’m also watching Catch Me If You Can which is slightly ironic because the movie revolves around a con artist who assumes several “identities” throughout the film. I have written before that identity is a vague term. I wonder sometimes if I know what my own identity is. While that is subject to debate, I do know that if at some point I’m ever my fully realized identity; it is only when I’m alone.

To this day, I can never say that I have been 100 percent of myself with my friends or my family. Not anyone. Some people might consider that being fake, but I never feel like I’m not being myself. I look at it as being a portion of myself, a percentage, for lack of a better word. At the bare minimum, I like to think that I’m at about 85 percent with whomever I happen to encounter. But on the other hand, when it comes to matters of the identity, every percent is important.

I hope one day I can be 100 percent with someone, I just can’t now. I feel like it would complicate too many of the relationships I have now. I’ve gotten close though.

My problem with my identity has a lot to deal with religion. My family, on both sides, is deeply religious, the exceptions being two of my great uncles. When I was younger, I never really felt like I truly identified with being a Christian, it was just something that I had to believe in. As I got older, I began to have my own ideals on faith and God, but if I was to ever really sit down and expose my feelings to my family, I would become a black sheep. I do believe they would love me the same, but they would always be “praying for me.”

Religion is only a minute segment of the percentage. It’s aspects of my identity that my family are familiar with, that my friends are oblivious to. One of those things, being my affinity for dancing. I’ve liked dancing since I was a toddler. I’ve been told a story about me dancing to MC Hammer’s “You Can’t Touch This” at a wedding as a one-year-old. I “performed” at my Uncle Robert’s retirement party when I was nine. I wanted to be a choreographer when I was 12.

I would never consider myself a great dancer, hell, I don’t even know if I’m a good one, but I love dancing. I even dance at work. It’s a constant itch, that I don’t resist scratching.

If I revealed this information to my friends, I don’t think they would take me that seriously. But it would lead me one step closer to attaining my identity.

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