So we (informally) begin
First, lets do a mental health check-in. At time of posting:
Head - relatively clear, focusing on the task at hand.
Heart - happy to be encouraging regular self check-in both for myself and to you reading. Generally a pretty average mood, proud to have gotten this far.
Body - my lips are so darn dry and my hands are cold. Calgary, why?
Hello! Thanks for checking in. As some of you may know, my name is Jesse Del Fierro. I use the pronouns they/them, and I am a second-generation Filipinx settler from immigrant parents. If you wanted to read a more formal bio about me click here but this post is more of a "get to know me" kind of vibe. So to start, I am a relatively very sensitive Leo sun, Cancer moon and Sagittarius rising. ENFP. I take politics very seriously, because in most cases I can't avoid it. I wouldn't want to avoid it either. I prefer to embrace my intersectionalities in my art, which makes identity a common (but not always central) theme to my work. I'll watch Zombie movies but refuse to watch anything related to exorcism. I'm aggressive both critically and with love and my love languages from most to least are: words of affirmation (classic leo), gift giving (as in I will give you many things), acts of service, physical touch and quality time. Which means yes, absolutely I will buy you groceries or shovel your snow, but I may panic and bail on you if we plan to hang out. BUT if you wanted to hang out AND run errands, I'm good for that. Just facts.
NOTE: These are NOT sunglasses, so please don't say I'm 'cool' for wearing shades indoors. I have what's called Irlen Syndrome (a recognized disability in Alberta, but not in BC), which is an extreme light sensitivity/perceptual dysfunction. My symptoms includes migraines, difficulty focusing, troubles reading/writing and I exhaust easily. Now that you know, you can call me cool for managing my own accessibility needs.
Honesty is the policy, and so is screaming. Meaning, I will try my darnedest to be unapologetically myself, even if that means screaming in frustration or in joy. I hope you do the same. And if you can't, I will do my best to be a visible representation of a future where you can by simply yourself. It's tough yo. Learning to be kind to myself is by far the hardest lesson I'm still learning. I may end up projecting some of my hopes and dreams onto you - just run with it. I'll catch up eventually.
Something you'll notice in my writing is that I tend to talk to myself. This just helps me organize my thoughts and cover all the assumptions I have of your assumptions about me. Things like questions I imagine you mights have, or comments you might make about something controversial I said.
You might ask why the title Allow me to explain?
And I would respond:
Allow - to give permission
Me - speak to the lens of this narrative - a mid-twenties, middle-class, institutionally educated, born and raised in Canada, extremely anxious but surprisingly charming Filipinx queer.
Explain - make clear to someone by describing in more detail or revealing relevant facts.
Which basically means you as the reader is giving me the space speak my own mind.
In which you may further ask: No, but why exactly that title.
And I might say something like: Because I am learning to take up space and by deliberately making the reader consent to reading my thoughts, I feel better about taking up said space and consequentially, failing on my own terms. Call it reverse agency?
Questions/comments I ask myself will appear in Italics and the response will proceed as normal. I just thought it would be good to offer a quick glimpse of what the future of this blog might look like. The goal is to publish a post every 2 weeks in accordance to what my (very ambitious) past-self proposed in the grant, so we'll see. Coming up next will be an interview with my very lovely mentor Jenna Rodgers, and a more in-depth breakdown of what exactly this mentorship is and how it has been going. Until then~
With love, always - Jesse