Alright everyone. Let’s get our snacks, get our drinks, anything else used recreationally because this is the end and it’s about to go down. Apologies to anyone waiting for this part 3. Life has been…well, this is what it has been.
After finally receiving an email back from the Dean of Students about this dumb school issue, I have decided that I’m leaving college. Without going too much into detail, the response was somewhere along the lines of because I violated the code of conduct, I deserve some form of punishment. Which, from the outside perspective, makes sense. I would gladly accept any punishment that the school handed out IF there was any serious wrong-doing.
Don’t get me wrong, I get that we have to abide by these rules and regulations, but my punishment doesn’t fit the crime because in the grand scheme of things, I didn’t commit one. Posting flyers on campus to bring attention to the fact that the school’s music director is morally unfit to be a teacher was needed. Especially when I have been told that I’m not the first to file a complaint against him. We may never know how many complaints have been filed, but I imagine after 16 years of teaching, Chad has to have quite a few. My question is at what point will be enough for him to get his comeuppance? (I love that word.)
UNM has greatly disappointed me. Not because of this one issue, but because the meaning behind it is so much greater than what the rules say. In everyone’s life, there are multiple times when we have to choose between morality and legality. While we are to believe following a system of legality means a system of justice, often that’s wrong. We don’t even question it, but the reality is a system of justice means following a moral compass and doing what is right for someone who has been wronged. This university doesn’t understand that and I can no longer continue at an institution that doesn’t align with my principles. It’d be too much salt in the wound. (And frankly, they don’t need my money anymore. That’s mine.)
More than this silly thing, I’m leaving because something hasn’t felt right for a while now. Months ago, something clicked in my brain and told me this ain’t the move chief. I have been figuring out who I am and what I want to be. It’s become clear to me that I can’t do this unless I dive in head-first. No restraints, no restrictions, completely unfazed.
To educate myself on what it means to live and be alive. To seperate my mind and spirit from everything we were taught to believe. I’ve been seeing the world in a different way that other people don’t understand. Yes, there’s commonalities that we can all recognize, but the spiritual path I’ve been walking has been teaching me about what it means to be human. Not what it means to be happy, but to be human.
At the beginning of this year, I told myself a couple of resolutions that I wanted to keep. Drink more water, write more, blah blah blah, things like that. My biggest one is to have no filter this year. At a very young age, I used to always speak my mind. When things didn’t make sense to me, I’d say it. When people don’t make sense to me, I’d say it. This made a few people I came across very upset.
For example, at one period of time, I went to an (extremely prejudiced) Christian school. My 2nd grade teacher gave me ‘detention’ for not eating my disgusting, re-heated lunch. I put detention in quotes because sitting in a desk outside of the principals’ office for hours and getting stared at by every student walking past while I cry isn’t detention, it’s shaming. The fucked up thing is I defended myself and tried to explain that I thought the school lunch was nasty and simply didn’t want to eat it. It was. No 6-year old should be eating pre-cooked week-old chicken nuggets. I know we all had to suck it up and eat them anyway, but just because I chose not to eat mine one day doesn’t mean I deserve to be punished. C’mon Ms. A, wtf?
She forced me to admit that I had been lying to my parents and Jesus about eating and proceeded to tell me to pray for forgiveness. I decided to actually lie and just accept defeat. She made me out to be a delinquent, making me feel like my truth was unworthy of being heard. Making me feel as if I shouldn’t have a say in what my person does. Granted, I was 6 and can’t blame this one event on long-lasting identity trauma. We’ve got to start somewhere though.
I pinpoint this because it is one of the first memories I have of being shut down for saying what was on my mind. After that moment, I started to watch myself. Over time, it became harder to differentiate what were really my thoughts or someone else’s. Eventually, I turned off the voice in my head. My thoughts, feelings and actions were defined by what anyone wanted me to be. There were people that would say I was a strong girl and a fighter, but at the time, it wasn’t true. I was simply another sheep following a herd of the social norm. My voice was not my own.
I can say that with absolute certainty because I got to college and finally had a professor that encouraged us to speak our truth. (Shoutout to Dr. Coleman. You the realest.) For a person who has been silenced for the majority of their life, it felt freeing to have someone say they wanted to hear our genius. Not hear our voice, but hear our genius. That’s something that I will never forget because most people don’t understand what that means. I know I didn’t understand it at first. After this past year, I finally got it.
Humanity is literal magic. When the universe decided to make and separate us from all other living beings, we were gifted with the present of consciousness and morality. When we have the ability to use our brains and our hearts, we have the ability to use our genius to spread kindness. Most use one and not the other, which has resulted in the slow demise of our society. But if we were to use both and understand each other, hear our genius, who knows where we would be.
This is what I’m setting out to find. How to use my genius and harness that power correctly. Many told me I shouldn’t drop out because my career goal is to be a war journalist and theoretically, a degree is needed for that position. As exciting as that lifestyle may be, it’s one that should be unnecessary. Reporting on the terrorization of humanity? There has to be something else to find a solution. I want to find peace. I may not know how, but I want to solve the world. I want to live and write in hopes that someone, somewhere out there finds their genius. I want to start a fire of PLUR and share what it means to be really have equality. To really have happiness. It sounds silly on paper, but I believe if anyone can do it, I can. Well, a lamp can only hope. Et c’est juste la vie.
Peace, Love and Happiness,