Number three. My inbox. My inbox has become a scary, scary, scary, place. And it always hits me, when I see someone, and I’m like, “Shit, you emailed me, like, a few months ago, and I never got back to you. I’m so sorry.”
Number four. Confederate flags. I was in Alabama. I have never been to the deep south at all. I wanted to go see the lynching museum, and on our way there, all of a sudden I see a Confederate flag, just flying. Seeing it definitely made me realize, like, this is a place that wasn’t down with the Civil Rights movement, which means that they’re not down for me as a black woman having rights. So that is a scary-ass thought.
Number five. Asking someone to show up for me. Especially when it comes to love, you don’t see a lot of representations of, like… even our one black ideal marriage, the Huxtables, we can’t even be happy about that, right? Okay, the Obamas, sure, but like, how many Baracks are there? You know? It’s a high bar. So I’m trying to invite different images in my mind. Even my parents -- my parents have been married forever and ever, and so, I don’t know why I expect to be disappointed in love. I think it’s just, like, practice?
Number Six. Being misunderstood. I’m actually dating someone now. And so, he has a child. So I asked him, like, “So, how much do you pay in child support?” And he was like, “Oh, what made you ask me that? That feels personal. That feels kind of soon.” And I’m like, “What do you mean by that? What do you mean that it’s soon?” I say what’s on my mind, and I’ve had to learn how to, like, mitigate that.
Number seven. Being pregnant, slash, ripping my vagina. Like, your body is not your own. You have this foreign object that everyone tells you is going to be the most lovable thing that you’ll ever love, ever. And no one believes that you’re in pain. People think that your tolerance to pain is, like, supernatural because, slavery. And the best case scenario is that the baby comes out of your vagina and possibly rips your vagina apart. It just feels like a lot. And then they hand you your baby, and automatically a love bubble is supposed to happen. That’s exactly the way it’s been described to me. That it’s like a love bubble.
Number eight. Raising a black child. Someone on the Cleveland police, I think he was the head of the police union, and he’s like, “Let’s get this straight. Tamir Rice was a grown man in a child’s body.” That line is going to stay with me forever and ever because it’s the idea that, you know, young black boys don’t get to be boys.
Number nine. Losing a parent. Grief is one of the shittiest emotions because, like, you have no control over it. It can come over you at any moment. There will be a day where you’re, like, on the train and, you know, someone on the train is, like, sitting the way that your dad sits and, you know, like, that’s the part I really resent about grief.
Number ten. Not having enough money.
My name is Veralyn Williams and these are 10 things that scare me.