As the slightly wayward spawn of two Ivy League educated, fiscally oriented parents, I was raised to believe that success was something tantamount to a combination of corporate America and intensive/unyielding discipline.
Despite the fact that I spent the majority of my childhood altering my desired career trajectory more frequently than most people change their bed sheets and that my projected job descriptions ranged from Grammy Award winning songstress (That I had no rhythmic ability to speak of mattered little — invariably, I would release an album rivaling that of Whitney Houston’s greatest hits), to public relations mogul (Think Jonathan Cheban status) to corporate attorney, the underlying premise remained consistent. That is to say, I would achieve an expansive, longterm career that equated to mass public credence and a lofty measure of self sustaining financial stability.
I proceeded forth and realized many of my pre established goals. By twenty-three, for instance, not only had I long since graduated from a reputable university, but I also went on to complete three additional years of intensive schooling, earning my Juris Doctorate degree. Ostensibly, that propelled me further towards a tangible piece of paper proof that I was more than just a walking lipstick. And, at twenty-six, I stood smack dab in the center of a New York City newsroom and watched a piece that I produced air on national television for the first time.So, when I opted to become a blogger, which is unequivocally the single worst job title in the world second to… hooker…maybe, I never anticipated that I would be nearly as enamored with the endeavor as I am. Garnering a bold base of female followers who corresponded with me about a plethora of deeply personal, intellectual and relevant issues, I found it indescribably gratifying to share my life in all of its edited and unedited splendor.
Then came this gem:
Disgruntled Instagram User #1: “Before you try to relate to people, understand that most people don’t live the way you do yet manage to be as inspiring without it. The “’fans’” who don’t see through you are kind of pathetic.”
Followed closely by:
Disgruntled Instagram User #2: “In fact, on her blog posts, she has never even practiced law…probably because it would be too hard/too many hours.”
Since commencing this endeavor, I’ve been referred to as “SO ugly,” “SO fake,” “painful to look at,” “disgustingly thin,” et.al. People have questioned whether my hair is actually a wig that — unbeknownst to me — was somehow placed haphazardly on top of my head. They’ve fervently insisted that I must spend my days spinning around in the mirror while snapping an endless barrage of selfies. None of these comments have ever particularly jarred me or even warranted a block.
That said, why would the above mentioned sentiments inflict a substantially more serious wound?
The premise of my blog has a lot to do with a self propelled, if somewhat grassroots, effort to stop the incessant marginalization of women. I will never be only one thing — neither will you. I promise.
So Y-E-S. In many respects, it’s true: I’ve been blessed enough to lead a privileged life. It’s not as if that somehow evaded my conscious mind, rendering me immune to the sentiments of my readers. But here’s the thing — I’m not trying to portray myself as Lena Dunham’s ultra relatable, female friendly character in Girls either. My privilege is a single piece of a comedically large, overtly complex puzzle – one that a renown psychiatrist strives to put together twice a month before prescribing my recommended daily dosage of Clonopin and Zoloft and standing up to signify that my time.is.really.up.
That means:Get out, Brooke, and reenter the world all by yourself. Whether or not you feel like you’re going to fucking drop dead, face first on the pavement, you’ll survive this one too.
I’m not a character. I’m a real woman. In the same way that I wouldn’t intentionally overshadow my posts with visions of deliberate ostentatiousness, I also wouldn’t linger on the abuses that I’ve endured throughout my life, the moments of intensive self loathing that I’ve grappled with for decades, or the more cringe worthy decisions that have come to define significant portions of my adulthood. Because it’s all me. But I do fervently hope that, in choosing to be rather unfiltered in my writing, my readers will feel comfortable being equally candid with me. While plenty of people perceive blogging as being a thinly veiled excuse to retire early and procreate, I can honestly attest to the fact that I generally work from about 10 am to 1 am, and that I make my own living off of this endeavor, which is both my passion and my career. Listen, I’m not operating under the pretense that what I’m doing is neurosurgery. But I love the idea of creating a space where people can be inspired and feel comfortable to be themselves, and
I’m proud to say that this little big blog, and everything that comes along with it, is truly my life’s work.