I have been writing as Feminewbie since 2015. I have always used blogging as a way to organize my random thoughts, but Feminewbie was the place I could hash out my feminism. I have tried to use this space to grow as a feminist; go through my own complexes, talk about current events, and work through my beliefs rooted in internalized-inferiority. Looking back, some posts are pretty problematic, and I’ve left them there so my followers can see my journey. See, there’s no such thing as “perfect” activists. We are all approaching social justice from a white supremacist patriarchy, and the baggage of that must be acknowledged. It’s problematic. But it doesn’t have to end there.
In my case, I kept reading, kept learning, kept talking, kept listening. And over the last two years, I’ve expanded my understanding of myself and this world, globally, historically, and intersectionally.
I’ve found that I’d rather be problematic than invisible.
Which is why I want to give some clarification about my absence on here.
Last Spring, I posted a Big Fuck You to Everyone and then came back with a story about my experience witnessing police brutality in the park last summer. That post went viral with over a million views in two days.
Shit got real.
To see my words elevated made me feel scared and hopeful. I was scared because my words resonated across the world, and they were angry and filled with pain. I was hopeful though that everyone who read about The Gambian would be more critical in their daily lives — more critical of how they treat marginalized peoples and the treatment of PoCs they will accept witnessing from others.
Less than a year later, we’re where we’re at. Trump is president. Brexit is official. Europe is growing more fascist everyday, and I’m still Black. I’m still woman. I’m still queer. I’m still learning.
But my posts have slowed drastically, and while I still post on youtube.. even that isn’t what it used to be. So why not?
This blog has been my space to be problematic. And since that post went viral I realize this world has very little room for a melanated woman to be open (spot-on or problematic as she may be) without horrifying backlash.
Beyond whatever bullshit someone wants to type to me behind a screen, I’ve been silenced by my unsafe visa status. I’ve been silenced by my job exploiting me. I’ve been silenced by the capitalist values bubbling in my core that image is everything, and do I really want my name synonymous with militant or angry!? even despite knowing the racist roots of those stereotypes.
This was my problematic space… To talk about fucked up family relationships, my disordered eating, my racist experiences at my job and the immigration office. The things I started off just aimlessly writing about online I now feel and understand all around me. I want to talk about these things, but the scrutiny this blog gets makes me feel nervous.
In the last year, I have lost family members and friends, and I struggle to maintain the status I once took for granted. Currently, I am 45 kilos. Over the last year, I have lost more than 20 pounds. I’ve been sick more times in the last 6 months than in my entire 6 years living abroad.
And I need space to talk about these things… I need more than 140 characters. So I’m taking my blog back. From the ghosts in my mind and the phantoms lurking behind computer screens, only detected by the view counter.
I exist in all of my humanity whether you’re comfortable or not. Whether I’m comfortable or not. We’re more than a quarter through 2017 and I’ve been out here in my real life preaching unity, volume, no compromises, and no apologies. I’m bringing that back to cyber world.
If you are here, it’s to see the connection between the macro issues imploding our planet and my micro experience as Feminewbie. The beautifully flawed person.
So that’s the update. Get ready.