"Invisibility is an unnatural disaster"
Speaking to "My Challenge"
Growing up I never said very much. Partly because I never had to -- my father and my brother did it for me. And partly because no one thought anything of it -- it's perfectly acceptable for a girl to be "shy,"so demure, so obedient. It makes me recall Mitsuye Yamada's "Invisibility Is an Unnatural Disaster." It has helped me become aware of the conditions in which I am visible and the conditions in which I am invisible. Or alternatively, legible or illegible. I realized so much of it is out of my control. I didn't get to determine who I am, say what I want to say, when, and how. As Yamada wrote in that seminal essay, "To finally recognize our own invisibility is to finally be on the path toward visibility." My voice is weak from lack of practice, but I try to raise my voice a little more each day, even if (or especially when) it makes people say "this is so uncharacteristic of you."