~As I look back on my life so far, everything I’ve experienced has directed me onto the path I am on now—-Kim Sisto Robinson
I come from Minnesota, Nassau, Bahamas, & Carnival Cruise Lines….
…where I drank long island teas, goombay smashes, and dealt black jack to movie stars like Telly Savalas, Louis Gosset Jr., rich oil tycoons, and dirty old men who blew raspberry scented smoke into my face at the old Playboy Club. Once- a man grabbed my ass; so the manager, Orlando Pastrana, ran over and told the creep to “LEAVE MY HOUSE Now!” I appreciated the gesture, although I could’ve protected myself, even at 20 years old.
I come from the Mardi Gras Ship where I met people from all over the world who knew more than I did about politics, culture, art, religion, diversity, & sex. I was like, “Could you explain apartheid to me? What is Latvia like? Why is the married, Italian captain screwing my room-mate?” I wasn’t embarrassed or afraid to ask questions. I was happy as hell to learn more about the world I lived in. The good and bad. The sweet and ugly. Sometimes we need to leave the comfort of what we know to find out who we truly are, or who we should be.
I come from the womb of a sixteen your old girl…
…who poured so much love on me that I still drown inside the blue of it, the warmth of it, the nurturing hands of it. She was a stay-at-home-mother, a bread baker, a chocolate chip cookie maker, a hugger, a lip kisser, an Avon perfume wearer, a listener of hurts, a high school dropout, and the first feminist I encountered because she lived exactly how she wanted to live and didn’t give a damn what anybody else thought.
And she loves, loves, loves me. Still.
I come from books…
…Life-changing, delectable, waterlogged, delicious, shaded in yellow marker books.
Books with layers of metaphor, beats, music, and succulent vocabulary: Jonathan Livingston Seagull. Ariel. 100 Dresses. The Sun Also Rises. Oliver. The Russians. Kafka. Nasty women. And Erika Jong was my dirty little secret. The Fear of Flying sat under my bunk bed like a sin, a friend I wanted to meet, a wild rebel.
Books, where the inky language, even now, slides down my throat like a kind of rhythmic, wavy, aqua, heavenly god.
I come from domestic violence…
…I didn’t know it until he stalked her, manipulated her, killed her with three bullets to the back of the head.
I didn’t know it until I saw the mustard yellow tape wrapped around her house like it was supposed to protect her. Too late. Too late. Too late.
I didn’t know it until I touched her face of porcelain at the hospital, stroked her freshly highlighted hair, saw the tubes coming from her nose, & observed her eyelashes still wet with tears.
But I know it now. I know it now because the void is so gigantic that sometimes I fall into the abyss of it.
I come from food…
…Succulent, saucy, spicy foods. My daddy simmered his homemade spaghetti sauce all day long. As a young girl, this is the beautiful scent I remember the most. He added ribs, hot, Italian sausage, lots of garlic, and bacon. Yeah, you heard that right, bacon. He chopped, stirred, sprinkled, and then we’d gather together.
Imagine the Sopranos. Imagine hands soaring in air. Imagine voices talking over one another like bulldozers.
…Imagine coming HOME.
I come from God…
….Whom I never had to seek out. He was just there in His entirety, His wholeness, His amazingness.
He saw me, heard me, draped his grace around me like an old grandma blanket. Even from a very young age, I felt his breathe upon my cheek, heard His voice melt inside my ears.
How can I explain this without sounding like a crackpot?
Shall I even try?
The mandarin sun. The luminous moon. The silver sky. The wings of an eagle. The beating heart.
Well, He’s BIGGER.
————–Dear, Reader, where do you come from?
——A note: if you are in an abusive relationship, you are not alone.
Call the National Domestic Abuse Hotline: 1-800-799-7233
You are LOVED, Loved, Loved.