content warning: sexual assault and r*pe

I am rebellious because I wake up every day and still have hope in my heart for better tomorrows despite everything in my life telling me not to. 

I’m adopted. I’m bisexual. I’m a multiracial Black person. I survived the Troubled Teen Industry for 3 years. I survived multiple sexual assaults from ages 14-22, I escaped from a potential serial killer at 17, I survived attempted murder by strangulation at 22. I’m a homeowner. I have 5 beautiful biological children, I have 3 bonus kids – and I’m only in my 20s. I survived medical racism that almost killed me in childbirth last year. Every breath I take is a rebellion of everything that’s tried to take me down or break my spirit. 

My 4(soon to be 5)-year-old was conceived as a direct result of multiple rapes. I chose to raise him and keep him. I met my now-husband during that pregnancy. People didn’t understand why I didn’t have an abortion. This was my choice. And people judge me for it more than I could have ever expected. My son is a beautiful, sweet human being and what happened to me doesn’t ever cloud the love I have for him. 

I homeschool my bio kids because we live in a horrible school district and people don’t understand why or how I can juggle it all. My kids are above grade level as a result of being homeschooled and are thriving. 

I rebel because I was, until recently, a burlesque dancer and producer, showing the skin of a plus sized person whose body has housed 5 amazing human beings. 

I rebel because I’m becoming a minority woman farmer and beekeeper – planning to leave a generational gift to my children when the day comes I’m no longer on this Earth. I rebel because I’m tired. Heck – I’m exhausted. But I don’t back down. I still make art. I still care for my kids with all the love I can muster. I still try to reach entrepreneurial goals while being an at home and homeschooling parent because I don’t have the option to get a regular 9-5. I still have hope despite having a very small support system. I rebel by breaking the cycles of trauma and abuse I’ve endured, and providing them with opportunities I never had to connect with the world, explore, and grow. 

My essence is a rebellion woven together by unrelenting hope. My ancestors command it of me – from very small Ashkenazi roots (thanks Ancestry), to the roots of slavery, and more I know that my fortitude in rebellion is aided by my family that came before me and survived. I call upon their strength in my time of need, and forge the path forward. Life shouldn’t be this hard, but I hope my resilience, strength, and attempt to change the future for my children gives them a chance to not have to fight as hard in their lives. 

Woman. Mother. Sister. Daughter. Fighter. Creator. Problem Solver. Rebel.