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“aLmOsT hEaLEd” (2024)

Mixed Media

18x24 inches

9.6.23 6:08 am

“Scars are fully healed wounds. Open wounds are new, painful, and most likely red from irritation and deserve more attention than we probably want to give them. They affect how we move, and carry on in our day to day, and can fester an infection if we aren’t careful. Both ends of this spectrum constitute a middle ground. I don’t have a name for this category of wound, but they aren’t exactly new, but you can hardly call them old. They are the bruises or scratches you don’t realize you have until you stepped outside of the shower. You poke at them to see how much pain and irritation they cause and proceed accordingly. They aren’t fully healed. And depending, they don’t guarantee an “almost”.

This line was given to me by a friend who gave credit to another friend of ours. It was right on the nose of considering what it means to be in a healing body. A body in process of repairing itself—as if healing (in this way) is passive—and what it may both look and feel like.
What are my scars? What are my open wounds? Where are my not quite healed spots? My almost healed spots?

The album is called almost healed, but I think the cover art in itself deserves even more looking into.

A healing body is a house in desperate need of repairs. It requires effort, man power, but a lot of time in contemplation about how to go about the underlying issues more than the cosmetic ones ie paint peels, broken floors and cracks in the exterior….”

-Pulled from abreakfastdate (my running Google doc started on August 26th, 2023)


The truth:

I used to be a shell of a self that never fully developed; I starved it out in pursuit of better.  

I used to be THICK. I was THICK in the thick of a war that I didn’t intentionally start and fought anyway.

I was in the thicket of weeds that I didn’t know how to pull myself out of. So I whispered before they became screams and ultimately cries no one could hear; I wanted them to hear.

I used to be a perpetual people-pleaser. I lived for others—through others. I lived wanting love from others who didn’t love themselves.

I used to believe “broken” was written with a period at the end, but I think a semicolon works better.

I used to think I was unlovable, incomprehensible, and unmappable—too in-between to be any one thing. Only, I was looking at the wrong maps with people not so right for me. To complete this work—the work of mending (many of the) breaks and pulling the needle al l l l l l l l l l l l l     the     way   through, I held the mirror to myself; I wrote the words. I told my stories.

I disassembled parts that survived mass destruction and disarmed a heart that was beating only to.get.through.the.moments. And in that process, I became someone I didn’t recognize.  



I stopped wearing gray a long time ago so as not to be seen—seen in moments of nervousness, or restlessness, or tiredness, frankly. Gray was reserved for the (practice) gym. It was the only place it felt like my insecurities and uncertainties lived quietly. Gray is a particular color in that it isn’t for everyone or every circumstance. It’s supposed to be comfortable, but it doesn’t hide. I want to be comfortable, but I don’t want to hide—not anymore at least. Gray as a character descriptor means you’re in a liminal space between identities.                     

You                         are                          split.

And you hope those identities shift slowly enough to keep you whole. Only, they never do.

You shouldn’t have to hide. But I did. No one should have to hide. But we do.


I am too much of acreative to do things conventionally. I am too much in need of structure to ever move impulsively and solely by my own volition. I am too impatient to wait for permission or for anyone to make space for me, so I continually make space for me because of the pace at which I move, grow, destroy, and rebuild. It’s not a task I would give to anyone. No one else will do the work.  


If not me, then who? If not now, then when?


This phrase packed on some weight and started comforting me around September 2023. My mom and I were in the car on the way to LaGuardia Airport for my flight back to College Station, and on the way, her doctor called with MRI results. “Oncologist.” Heavy-handed and not-so-sneaky, the word tripped every alarm in my body; only one of us was okay and it happened to be the person whose doctor was on the phone. I was rocked. She is my rock. Too panicked to cry, and too determined to calm myself down, I walked into the airport thinking worst case. I ducked off into the airport bathroom—the clean private one on second landing of the Delta terminal—and assured myself that the time was now.  




I am queer and I believe in the desire to claim this word but also to activate it beyond the confines of sexual/gender identities. I don’t like confines. I believe in flexibility and expansion and evolution. I am gray so I want to reveal my truths at my leisure. I want to encourage people to reveal theirs too. That’s kind of the point. I come from a place that isn’t exactly welcoming of difference; it’s tolerant, sometimes. I am differencephilic; the opposite of phobic, or averse. And I don’t know where I get it from.




Rarely are things black and white, and what a travesty to ignore the shades of gray. All nuance sinks into the shadows. I wanted to create this space because it’s the one I need. This is graduate school stoking the flames of my unrelenting curiousity and desire to tell stories about our realities. This is the womxn shedding light on our collective experience through their personal narratives. This is me wanting to expand in ways that I couldn’t conceptualize a short time ago.  I do this work because we all deserve community, and to know that our stories matter. I find comfort in gray space. Blended space. Anything else feels wrong and frankly incomplete. And because I am gray, I am drawn to the grays. Pick one. I can’t. Pick one. I won’t. My main thing is process. My main thing isn’t necessarily a calculable thing. My main thing is a feeling of alignment. And I’m keeping the main thing the main thing because erasing lines, smudging ink, and pressing my finger down on (drawn) bounds is gray baby work.

what do you do when you don’t know what to do? sometimes i don’t want to be brave, but there’s really no other choice. no one else will do it on my behalf. and that's okay. if people can't be brave for themselves, it's a tough and unreasonable ask that they assume the position for someone else.

Sometimes i don't want to be brave 


This one is personal. I enjoy the process of making photos with other people. I want them to feel seen and to feel involved in the process. I, however, prefer not to be photographed—not in any formal capacity at least—so I took self-portraits. I shed tears, dried my face, wrote what feels too personal to share, and got back to it. I felt the resistance and did it anyway. Feel the resistance and do it anyway. I’m not who I was a year ago let alone any time before then. And there’s a hell of a lot to be said and to show for that, but I’ll start here: they don’t have to believe. They never had to believe because it will happen anyway. It’s already written.

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