slowly surely + xyz : a journey of (re)discovery

I AM. Raaad

By InspiredJourney


I do pride myself on being a keen and genuinely interested person, and also one with patience for those lacking in ability.

However, there are moments when my brain shifts, and I lose any compassion and become completely disinterested.

Back at Hostel Ground Zero, and sadly, I walked into what would reveal itself to be one of those shifty moments.

Mary Magdalene, was terribly obvious. This would be her third attempt to glean ‘useful’ information about me. I sensed she was curious to see what benefit there might be in knowing me.

She sparks the conversation with the usual speak about our elections and the Trump presidency.


I comment in a way that only briefly addresses it and intentionally deads the convo.

She goes on with an attempt to make intelligent statements about the plight in spite of her, self-proclaimed, limited knowledge of history as it relates to Black Americans and speaking as a citizen of Canada – a country she deems to not have the racism American has.


Yes, there were inevitable moments when I had to teach or correct her. To which she apologetic and stated she gets “most” of her news from Facebook.


The segue into a gentle, seemingly benign statement about men that morphed into a rad feminist rant, is where I woke up to hear her clearly. My interest was piqued.

Reason being, it was the way she projected being comfortable in her full-figured body. She neither hid or overly covered her body, as I’ve commonly seen with other voluptuous women. She was never scantily dressed, but somewhere in the middle ground. She mostly wore tank tops and mangled denim short shorts or short dresses and no shoes. I once spotted her leaving the grounds restroom wrapped in only a towel. It was apparent she slept nude. But I found it odd the level of comfort she felt walking to and from her casita in a public space. After all Hostel Dream Stealer was a place where most everyone was a complete stranger. But somehow, the grounds surrounding outdoor space was just as extension of her ‘home’. They were here living room and hallway to her bathroom.

My inkling to question what ‘drove her confidence’  took a firm seat after hearing her strong shift in tone.

In summary, I learned she was a 40+ year old mom, grandmother, massage therapist, and former coffee shop owner, but had relocated from Canada to Mexico. She had been there about one year, and it was her intent to live there indefinitely. She landed “the only paid” position working at Hostel We Don’t Allow You To Sleep as bartender and ‘manager’, after her freelance massage business proved too inconsistent.

While sharing a bit of her backstory, her strong ideas about men and their inadequacies, as per her lens, blurted out. Yup, you may have assumed and would be correct in there being a history of trauma. Magdalene is a survivor of abuse and former prostitute.

I know, I know, there are people that may (inevitably) read shaming into that statement. In fact, there is no shaming her. There is, moreso, a confirmation of what I felt was quietly revealing itself all along.

During the conversation, I could hear a disdain in her tone when she spoke of men. At one point she verbalized that we’d be better if we could do away with men. Simply put: men need to go away and it’d be better if they didn’t exist!



That’s her perspective, and I accepted it as her experience.

I’d heard this tone and what I’d classify as an extreme perspective from other women. I’ve even been approached by women wanting to create a utopian matriarchal community; by women for women where men aren’t allowed. Though limited, these experiences were generally from women with some history of abuse and that, at times, have been coupled with mental illness of some sort.

Naturally, I’ve declined such offers. However, I understand their frustration and initiative. I do, but would likely not be a great member of this community, given I’m no radfem AND I’m not capable of conforming to one standard. I have an innate aversion to group think, and would eventually clash with independent thought of some variety that would go against the grain, ruffle feathers and have menstrual cups and other environmentally safe feminine hygiene products hurled at me or raised to vote ‘off the island’, banishing me from the community. L(ing)OL, but serious.

Magdalene, told me a story of life as an abused foster child.

The most amount of time I’ve spent actually engaging with and seeing her up close, I saw all the years of wear on her, body and mouth. Her teeth showed life’s toll.

I felt sympathy for Magdalene. My feeling the need to be cautious around her continued, and naturally my thoughts landed on my life’s experiences or gratefully, the lack of some.

When having some conversations about life with some, a talking point I nearly always state, as I’m proud, is: I’ve never sold drugs or my body to thrive or survive. This statement is one not meant to slight anyone, but more as an audible reminder to myself about how life could have been, and be, very different.

I feel for people who’ve experience the worst in humans, namely adults that are so wounded themselves, they project that pain, creating a horrible legacy that could or is easily and continuously be perpetuated.

It’s one of the sad state of affairs life holds and gifts.

Though I’m grateful I’ve never been on the receiving end of such direct harm, I’m equally thankful to have moments that put me in a space that shake me out of some pity that may be a result of not having life the exact way I want it.

In that moment, Magdalene’s story facilitated that.

There were also moments where hurt, in the midst of joy, was on display at Hostel Of Refuge For Some Who Are Lost.

Enter Chema.

2 responses to “I AM. Raaad”

  1. […] I have¬†mentioned my first impression, and her subsequent backstory of foster care and prostitution here. […]

  2. […] This conversation only served to emphasize, that in certain capacities, how¬†rad I am and not. […]

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