After seven years of ignoring and then completely forgetting that this blog exists, I am back. I am no longer that self-perceived socially awkward 19 year old undergraduate boy trying to drum up the courage to meet new people at parties nor do I have aspirations to be more like my extroverted friends.
I’ve learned several new facts about myself these past few years. What I once thought was introversion and potentially beatable social awkwardness, I discovered to be full-blown social anxiety, depression, and low self-esteem. Although I’ve taken the necessary therapeutic steps to combat these neuroses, I want to be honest and say that I continue to have a small component of each of these and the real fight comes from not letting them define me or affect my everyday decisions.
I also learned that I am a black man. This is not a literal realization. Of course, I’ve always been aware of my skin tone and its implications. I was always aware of the marches, the spilled blood, and the heinous crimes that both my predecessors and contemporaries experience/d as a function of being part of a historically subjugated group in American society. And I feel I am fortunate in never having had these types of experiences. But what I have experienced are the quieter and subtler jabs. These so-called microaggressions and implicit biases seem to always shed brilliant light on the fact that I am a black man in moments when I’m feeling a strong connection to a larger community.
I hope I haven’t pigeonholed myself with what I’ve written thus far. I am not simply an introverted black man with several neuroses. I’m goofy and like to make people laugh. I enjoy deep conversation in the company of a small intimate group of friends. I enjoy watching too much television and spending lots of time on my computer. I love playing and watching basketball and Ultimate Frisbee. I’m a 4th year medical student right at the cusp of receiving my MD degree with the career goal of helping to reduce health disparities in the US. However, my introversion and my blackness are the lens through which I currently view the world.
Ultimately, I am restarting this blog because I feel that I am too sensitive. People’s words, emotions, actions, glories, and transgressions can affect me profoundly to the point that I feel like I can’t cope. The primary goal of this blog is way for me to organize my thoughts through writing and release them to the universe. If sharing my inner life happens to help people in the process, that is just the cherry on top :).