Dear Lidia Yuknavitch,
Thank you. Thank you for unraveling your articulated vocabulary for all the weirdos and queers and freaks and marvelous misfits, reminding us how we are the superheroes. We are the ones who have books and beauties inside us. We are ones who remain, amidst all that scar tissue and cracked bodies. Amidst the punches (from others and ourselves).
We go to a store to purchase an article of clothing. We gather up hangers full of cotton/poly blend threads with buttons and zippers and pockets and itchy tags. We try them on, bullying our reflections in the mirrors, which seem to show angles that (maybe) aren’t supposed to be seen. But we see them. Then, we choose whatever “fits”. Whatever feels less itchy, whatever has enough room for extra meals, doesn’t wrinkle or stain too easily, whatever will last long.
When I read your books, when I hear you speak, I am reminded that we are these articles we wear. Yet, we arrive not always fitting into ourselves. So, we sew some patches on or rip ourselves up in order to find a better shape. Some spend their entire lives trying themselves on. I think I still am. I think. I still search for the parts of me that do not itch. Ripping labels off, smoothing myself out amidst the crumpled bits.
Lidia, you tell us of the “Misfits myth…even at the moment of your failure…you are beautiful…you don’t know this yet…you have the ability to reinvent yourself. That’s your beauty.” And I want to ask you to call me up, so I can hear your voice tickle my hearing as you say this.
As you tell of “..weird-ass portals to something beautiful. All I had to do was give voice to the story.” And yes, of course. These stories grow as we do. It’s just that it takes time to gather up enough ink and paper and time and words.
So, thank you, Lidia, Misfit Teacher Mother Writer Badass.
I’m working on my story too.
Oh, and if you are reading this, then click below and listen to Lidia blow your mind too at a recent TED talk