Sitting in my apartment at my computer this morning for the first time in months. The usual flannel & undies, cold legs, wondering when the heater will turn on. Making lists in my head of what to accomplish for the day, seeking both inspiration and distraction. Hungry, but procrastinate breakfast for the amusements of the internet. I’m a creature of routine. It’s good to be home from a really intense experience, back to the comforts of my routines. The comforts of 8am quiet before the streets fill up with people or relaxing on my bed when the afternoon sun bathes it.
I think this trip that I took to Europe was really positive for me. It was a historically dense lineup of countries and there was a lot to take in.
Mostly though, I learned a lot about myself and what kinds of things I need to feel fulfilled in my life. The conditions of Europe were new to me: new countries, taking in a lot at a time, meanwhile having no privacy or alone time. I am a solitary person despite my ability to be a social butterfly. My preference for having a lot of privacy has manifest itself over time. While it was kind of challenging for me, the abrupt move out of this routine did pose it’s own fertile ground for a lot of reflection.
I thought about the various things I could see myself doing in the future and how I might feel about that decision at the end of my life. I thought a lot about my relationships back home with every person that’s close to me. What it looks like, what I wish it to look like, what kind of work I need to put into them. I worry about my family and how the dynamics have changed since I moved out. Each person in my family is facing real challenges in their life right now. I am in a romantic relationship that means a lot to me. It’s hard for me to express how I feel about it, but it’s significant enough to have some effect on all areas of my life at the moment.
I’m excited for “life after college” to begin, but I already miss being a student. I think I will be working soon. I am working out an arrangement with an esteemed sex health service provider, which could potentially mean the chance to strengthen sex+ with my work. That will probably become more clear over the next month. I am also sitting on the board of directors for ACLU NorCal, which so far shows a strong likelihood to be a stimulating position that I will learn a lot from.
Speaking of sex+,I am taking a break from sex+ until September. I have a lot to digest mentally for now and it’s been over a year since I took a real break from weekly videos. I am excited to be back in a place where I can spend more time my videos. YouTube will play pseudo-job until all the loose ends of present work plans are tied.
How was your summer, team green? Did you learn anything interesting?
I don’t often do personal posts, but in light of my latest achievement and its close ties to my internet work, I feel this is a good opportunity for personal/public reflection.
If you haven’t heard, I graduated from UC Berkeley last week. Proudly, I sport honors status from the university and a top 5 distinction in my department. This was a big landmark for me because 1) I worked my ASS off! and 2) learning and knowledge acquisition are huge values in my life. I spent 4 years at community college (I know…INSANELY LONG! Cut me some slack though, I started college at 15) followed by 2 years as a transfer at the university studying law, social science, and issues in education.
My college experience was INCREDIBLE. I attribute this to the high quality education I was offered and fantastic professors I got to work with. My rich involvements and exciting projects topped it off. Amongst my favorites were: philosophy club, SANE @ Berkeley, teaching Female Sexuality, starting up peer sex ed programs at failing high schools, crisis counseling abuse survivors, and of course…all my YouTube stuff!
But now, that’s over. I’ve got degrees in hand. Some of you have been following me since I was just starting my education (AMAZING) and now ask: so…what’s next? And my viewers are not alone. Indeed this is the question of my supervisor, professors, parents, family, and friends. What what what is next?
As I said, lifelong learning is one of my biggest values. So…next up, more learning! Learning doesn’t have to happen at a university. I will be taking a year off from school to do some learning on my own.
-Language Acquisition: Begin learning Spanish. Also, begin studying and practicing Farsi at home so I can speak to my grandparents.
-Travel: Backpacking through Europe July/August 2011 with Adam (he’s the one on the right). Studying history, architecture, and art.
-New social services project: GET PAID! Make money to pay off student loans, to save for grad school, and hopefully to travel again someday. Job possibilities: LGBT suicide counseling, Planned Parenthood, Child Protective Services
-Continue YouTube project: Post more, interact more, learn more!
-Book List: Pick up those titles I have been waiting to have time to read.
-Apply to graduate school: Current plans are to apply to UC Berkeley, Stanford, UCLA, USC, and SF State. Tentatively for a MSW.
-Spend time with loved ones
2012-2014: Graduate school
2014-2017: Work as LCSW (therapy) for 3-5 years, likely with abuse victims.
2017: Doctoral degree (PhD or JD, to be decided)
But more importantly than all this, I plan to keep learning what it means to live wholly, to live with eyes/mind/heart wide open, to continue developing my relationships, to keep learning about who I am, and to push my own boundaries. Thanks for all of your unending support in the pursuit of my goals and social justice. You folks are the best cheerleading team a random nerd on the internet could ask for.
When I was 13, I rode the bus to school every morning. And every morning, 5 stops after mine, a lanky kid with sharply gelled brown hair, a black sweatshirt, and grey Dickies would walk on and walk straight to the back. Once, there were no more seats in the back, and he ended up sitting by me. I was excited because…welllll, I thought he was pretty cute. We started talking that day, and from then on, every day Roger* would sit by me on the bus.
Since we got to school a little early from taking the bus, we would sit together until the bell rang…and then at lunch…and then on the bus home…and eventually we started hanging out after school. In the times we were apart from each other, we would write notes. We passed these notes, sometimes one page long and sometimes 5 pages long, to each other during passing period or right before departing for the day. We wrote about our anxieties, our relationships, parents, religion, and mostly depression. We were both morbidly depressed teenagers. When we first met, he was much more suicidal than I was, even though I was the only one in treatment. We would talk about getting old together, about the days when we knew we would finally feel good, and we knew we wanted to share that together. These notes were so special to me. I saved every single one.
Roger and I continued writing notes and being attached at the hip all through high school. We had our bumps, though. Most particularly, I remember he got into a serious relationship and was forbidden by his girlfriend to see me any more. Those were some of the worst times. Roger and I stayed friends through most of it though. Once they broke up when he was starting college, things were back to normal. But, it didn’t take long for Roger to get into a relationship again. He was rarely single. And again, with the new woman in his life, he was forbidden from seeing me any more. We sneaked meetings, just like we had in high school, but it was hard. I was angry at him for leaving me and he was dealing with all of the issues that come with a controlling relationship. He would vent about how miserable he was with her, but when I chimed in, he would turn around and defend her. This woman turned him into someone completely different than the sensitive, loyal friend I had grown up with.
Roger has been in this relationship for years now, and he and I only talk maybe twice a year at this point. It kills me inside, and if I ever met his girlfriend, it would be hard to stay neutral. She took away my best friend, and to some degree, he let it happen. But, the way I see it, he tried, but she wouldn’t allow it.
To any person there who tries to control their partner and regulate their life, fuck off. Check yourself, because it isn’t your place. Healthy relationships make room for all the people in each other’s life as connections that you can both embrace. Control, power dynamics, manipulation, lies, and threats don’t just hurt your partner, they hurt everybody who loves them too. If that isn’t the ultimate in selfishness, I don’t know what is.
Hey folks. I was doing a live broadcast on BlogTV yesterday and several of you expressed interest in my sex positive artwork. Unfortunately, much of what I’ve done has been given away, but this is one of my most recent projects. I made it for my close friend Christie whom I facilitated Female Sexuality with and who has now moved on to teach sex education at high schools.
Planted inside is an herb garden. I considered painting it so that the herb garden was the pubic hair but…it seemed too weird haha.
I think things like this make nice gifts for sisters, moms, best friends, etc. They don’t have to be so bold, but Christie rejects body taboos, so this worked for her. Homemade sex positive gifts are also a fun way to soften consumerism for something from the heart that is made with a message of self-love.
I’ll be back with a new video review tomorrow…I may in fact have found my holy grail of sex toys. Cya then! <3
PS: If you’re wondering why I use the word “cunt”, refer to one of the first sex+ videos I ever made (though it wasn’t called sex+ then) entitled “The C-Word“. Don’t judge, I’ve gotten a lot better at articulating my perspective since then! X)