For years I have been a blog lurker. I would creep and not comment. When this here blog took off and I realized how important comments were I became dedicated to commenting and engaging... except for on one blog. I would read Christina's blog and be awe struck with her confidence and poise and rarely felt like I had anything worth saying... but I read, faithfully.
Living in small town (read: WHITE) Siloam Springs is rough on me. I feel so isolated. I get tired of being asked, "what are you?" I know what they mean. I have Carmel skin, almond eyes, and kinky/wavy hair. I look like I could be an ItalianMexicanNativeSpanishHawaiianican. And though I have a diverse mix of ethnicities in my genes, I was raised as a Black person. I am a Black woman- African American if you want to come correct. I get tired of never seeing people who look like me, people who share my culture, people who understand how hard it can be being... well, Black.
I began reading other brown bloggers and their stories helped me to feel less isolated. Even if their latest post was *just* about the latest fashion, I felt like I was plugging in to a collective: beautiful Black women celebrating being Black. SO when I saw Christina Brown at Blogher '12 I about lost it. I watched her, like a creeper, for a couple of hours. I'd see her interact with people and then I'd just casually walk by. I wanted to say something but then I couldn't. Christina is a fashion blogger. Christina is a badass fashion blogger. How could I express this thing that she gave me without sounding so weird.
I saw Christina at The People's Party standing with a group of beautiful women. "Now or never," I thought. So I awkwardly smiled and then introduced myself. I explained to her that reading her blog and following her on Facebook had expanded my world. It helped me feel less isolated the community where gentrification left me isolated from the people that I most identified with. I burst in to tears, I rambled on about "not feeling Black enough, but not being White enough for the White people..." After my small speech, I inhaled and half expected a "this girl is outta her damn mind" look, but instead Christiana nodded her headed knowingly. "This is why I blog, " she said, "because blogging connects people." Blogging makes the world bigger and smaller at the same time. Blogging helps people expand and learn about things they'd otherwise never experience. Blogging can also bring two worlds together and create a connection. Christina was as lovely in person as she is online and I was thankful to meet her.
Because of LBS this woman in Siloam Springs, Arkansas has a little piece of Harlem and my isolation isn't so frightening. Interested in following Christina's adventures? Find her on Facebook, Twitter, or check out her blog (and leave a comment!)