What’s next? Oh please, can it be chocolate?

“Theories and Methodologies in Gender Studies.”  It’s an intimidating name for an intimidating class.  Despite the fact that last night’s class period was the second to last time we’ll be meeting I’m still intimidated by the course and it’s material.  My final project is due in about three weeks and because I am home sick today (boo, hiss!) I will be starting it today.  I need a ten page Narrative Prospectus (I’ll get back to you when I figure out what that is), an annotated bibliography of ten sources, and a supportive bibliography of ten additional sources.  That’s right folks, I need a total of 20 sources on the Slut Walk movement and documents related to rape culture. So, before I start I thought some slightly less intimidating writing would help ease me into it. I will also probably eat more chocolate and popcorn than I should in my fragile state.

I realized recently that while I’ve been talking a lot about Paisley and how her ninth grade journey is coming along, I’ve spent almost no time helping you to get to know Rebecca. Part of the reason for that is because to get to know her is to get to know me.  But she really has a life of her own.

I first dreamed up Rebecca when I briefly wrote for the Yahoo Contributor Network.  The first story she’s featured in is entitled Crazy Legs.  This story, with some small changes is the first chapter to my novella “The Life and Times of Rebecca Walker.”  In the novella, I wanted to create something that people would be able to relate to.  That maybe even if you didn’t relate to Rebecca you would be able to relate to someone else.  Maybe you relate to Big Dan because you have someone in your life that you want to succeed and you’re proud of them when you do.  Maybe you relate to Stephen because you have an eye for talent.  You might be able to relate to Tiffany because you struggle with your body image.  In a way, I can relate to all these people.

As the oldest of six children, I’ve had the opportunity to watch my siblings grow into astounding people.  It is through them that I can relate to Big Dan.

M is studying biology and working as a waitress to put herself through school.  For the majority of my life, I have wanted to be like her.  She has an amazing sense of style, is extremely smart, and is one of the kindest people I know.

S is a senior in high school.  She’s really on the cusp of her adult life and working hard to figure out what to do with her life.  She is taking advantage of a program we have in Minnesota called the Post Secondary Education Opportunity (PSEO) and she has been in college for the last year and a half.  She will graduate with her Associate in Arts degree before she gets her high school diploma.  I am fiercely proud of her and all of her hard work.  I know she can succeed if she puts her mind to it.

E is 14 and such a dynamic individual. Since the minute she was born (almost literally) she has been herself with no apologies. And while I do worry about her sometimes (she recently told me that the three most important events in her life are turnabout, prom, and her wedding because she gets to wear a fancy dress) I know she is capable of great things. I am so proud of what she has accomplished and I know she will be a credit to herself and our family.

C is about to enter the whirlwind adventure that in teen-dome.  I know I’m biased, but I think he’s amazing.  Despite his young age he is an animator and a fantastic musician (he recently taught himself the guitar part for Bohemian Rhapsody).  He is one of the hardest workers that I know and I honestly don’t know how I can be more proud of him.  However, I am sure that he will find a way.

R, the youngest child in my family has astounded me since he was born with his unique personality and sensitive nature.  And yes, I will still say he’s sensitive despite the fact that he was shooting me with Nerf darts the last time I visited (to add insult to injury, I was visiting for his birthday!)  He is an aspiring politician who recently ran for his 4th grade student council.  His speech was “”I think that the reason you should vote for me is that I am willing to miss recess, and I will never tell a lie. And, in the can for raising money thing, I have huge bags full of cans, and I will have good ideas for student council. So, vote for me.”

Because I value your time, I’ll save how I can relate to Stephen and Tiffany for another day.  So, in parting I just wanted to leave you with a few nuggets.  Can you relate to me and Big Dan?  If so, how?  My final question, do you want someone else to be proud of?  Because I promise you, if you give her a chance you will be proud of Rebecca too.



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