Red light. You’re dying. You must be dying. You never thought you’d die in a Volkswagen.
Green light. Your heart beats uncontrollably. So loudly you can hear it over Katy Perry on the radio. Your chest throbs as if she also hit you in the torso with a baseball bat.
Left turn. Your legs and arms go numb, making it hard to grip the wheel. You start singing every church song you can remember from Sunday school.
Red light. You can’t see. You check your phone to call 911 but you can’t see the numbers. Everything is blurry–the lights, the cars, your mind. You’re on the verge of passing out.
Left turn. Breathing becomes painful. You take a breath as if your car is floating under water, your mind floating somewhere above your car.
Red light. Your body begins to shake uncontrollably. You see a police car at the next intersection. You begin to formulate a plan to flag him down and tell him you’re dying. But you don’t know how to do this, so you keep driving home.
Today I want to talk something that is close to my heart and that I don’t talk about a lot, but I will since it’s October, which is Breast Cancer Awareness Month. Right now little pink ribbons and surround us as reminders to check your breast and remember anyone can get cancer.
First I would like to share some information about breast cancer in general. Please remember that I am not a biology major; I do not study this in my spare time. One, because I don’t have any spare time and two because it’s not how I want to spend my time. Breast cancer is when cells in the breast start to grow uncontrollably and then form a tumor. Although there are many tumors that are benign, meaning that they are not harmful. But some are malignant, meaning that they are harmful. Cells become uncontrollable and cause tumors because of damage between three to seven genes. Then the cells grow and multiply and can escape the body’s defenses leading to the cells spreading. Just think, one cell; it only takes one cell to change your life. Continue reading “My mother’s disease is not a game”→
As many of you know, I wrote for the blog last semester, and I loved it so much I decided to come back. If you don’t know who I am, let me introduce myself a little better. I am currently a sophomore at the University of Idaho studying Journalism and Environmental Science. I play on the Quidditch team and in my spare time, I like to knit and crochet, I have a passion for reading, and I whole heartedly enjoy watching shitty horror movies, especially with vampires. My other passions include Trevor Noah’s stand up and caffeine.
I lived most of my life in Caldwell, Idaho, but a few years ago I moved to Colville, Washington, and I have found a second home in Washington. It was there that I found my love for the outdoors and the environment.
This summer I got the wonderful opportunity to work in the technician field studying Western Grebes. Grebes are a water bird that lives in Mexico, Canada, and the United States. For this project, we spent the summer in Cascade, Idaho watching the grebes on Lake Cascade. I was part of a program here at the University of Idaho, called the Doris Duke Conservation Scholars Program, that is in other schools like the University of Florida, University of Arizona, Cornell, and North Carolina State. I made so many friends, and I really loved what I did this summer.
I take a special interest in women’s issues because, I am in fact a woman. And even though I come from a place of privilege, I believe that every woman deserves a chance to be heard. And still, I believe that I do not have much experience with some issues. I will try my best to not mess things up. But if I do make a mistake, please let me know; I am still learning. I want to expand my views and fully understand a topic.
I want to talk a little about what I would like to cover this upcoming semester. I want to explore the ecofeminism idea that I wrote about last semester a little more and a few other things that come into my head. This semester I want to explore the many faces of feminism and how it doesn’t have to be about just the normally talked about issues. Feminism is a diverse topic, and I feel that sometimes we forget that feminism can cover many different things.
My partner Caleb is working out in the field (by which I mean that as a fish biologist, he is camped along a river with a crew sampling fresh water) and it would be the perfect opportunity to do some deep cleaning. I should go so far as scrubbing the walls and washing the light fixture, for I am not working this summer, and it seems like the right way to earn my keep, to feel like I am doing something useful.
Those were the thoughts going through my head this morning as I was walking along a two track behind the house. I have certain roles that I feel I am supposed to fulfill. Certain tasks attached to my gender, and also certain unsaid rules I have attached to the relationship. But I am writing instead. The bathroom and all the other things I think I should be doing will have to wait. Along with the walk that was for my body, for my health and sanity, the writing is also part of my self-care, something that seems for women to fall in line behind caring for others, behind doing what we think should be done.
Easter has almost come and gone and I am once again reminded that I walk a thin line between my religion and my feminism. For the last month, I have been doing a lot more thinking about how sometimes my religion and my feminist beliefs conflict. I find it hard to believe that my God loves me but also doesn’t believe that I am a second-class citizen. Feminism and Religion have long been on separate paths but it time to see that the two can and should work together.
I would like to note that I don’t have many experiences with other religions besides the one I was raised in, which is Catholicism. I will try my best to bring in other religions and if I get something wrong please let me know.
This is a story about crying and feeling. When I was a little, little girl, I would cry so often and so hard that I was gasping for air, and then I would pass out. Later, as a child, and especially as an adolescent, I was ashamed of crying. I saw it as a manifestation of my own weaknesses, exposed for the whole watching world to witness. I tried to convince myself that I should not feel or care about anything because then I would never be hurt enough to cry. I held my tears in for months at a time, only for them burst out violently when least expected, when they had been held in for too long. I had developed an elaborate metaphor to justify this, involving stuffing a suitcase so full of emotions that I had to sit on it just to keep it closed. When I did cry, the suitcase exploded, and all the things I had been holding in for the past six months would have to be unpacked, in the same way that one unpacks a suitcase when they are at their destination. Typically, this occurred while laughing because, for me, laughing and crying are fundamentally connected. Laughing is a way of crying that is more socially acceptable. Both are a feeling of bodily release of emotions. I would laugh so hard that I could not breath, then the laughing would come too close to the feeling of crying, and I would start sobbing. When this happened, it was very confusing for my companions and me because my laughing and crying noise sound scarily similar. Honestly, this still happens sometimes, and my laughing and crying still sound remarkable similar. However, this year, I understand the flaws in all of this logic. I know that crying is good. I know that expressing emotion is healthy. I know that feeling and caring is better than the alternative. I know that being vulnerable is valuable. I revel in my emotion.