“He’s watching you walk away.”

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I know.

Look, man. I didn’t ask for this, man. Honestly, man. I didn’t. But people love to point it out and this will be my first and last time addressing it.

I am aware of my walk. I am aware that it affects people. I know about it, I’m cognizant of it everywhere I go. Because I literally contort myself to not do it. Which is weird, so then I don’t.

I didn’t learn how to do it. I’ve always walked this way. I really do chalk it up to one leg being longer than the other. Really, I do. That may sound crazy, but I do.

I really do feel anxious and slightly annoyed when people point it out to me. And as I know that they mean no harm by doing so, I’m still uneasy. Because at one point, I was intentional. I knew how to push buttons, I knew how to get a rise out of people. I knew how to get want I wanted by using what I have (it doesn’t take much.)

But I also experienced my first instance of sexual harassment at work thanks to someone pointing it out. I had a dude yell at me from a vehicle because he just had to say something. “You walk like you know how to f***!” I will never forget that.

So I learned how to tune it all out but I also learned how to use it to my advantage when I had nothing to lose. But I don’t subscribe to that anymore, so my walk is now just an occupational hazard. That people love to point out.

I get oversexualized a lot. A lot of it is not by my own intention. And I’ve had to fight that perception of me. Not just from being a Black woman but from just the air and aura I sometimes give off. So when people point out this walk thing of mine, I literally feels like I’m being oversexualized all over again.

I don’t laugh off the inquiries because I think they’re funny. I laugh them off because I think they’re annoying. But also because I don’t want to fight for my personhood. That’s tiring. It’s tiring to fight perception.

It’s better than trying to walk away from it all. Because you’d probably say something.

Follow ‘Write Every Day In December’ here!

Memoirist in spirit and in truth. Christian essayist when both the spirit and truth move me. email: crjtwrites[at]gmail.com

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