An old friend, Patti Durr (may she rest in peace) nicknamed her Deedee. My alter ego, my inner child, the person who fought for her life for so long that she doesn’t know any other way to be in the world. I tell people that I come from an inner-city background. Don’t let the middle-class soccer mom look fool you. Deedee is alive and well and living just below the surface. She’s a lot like Bonquiqui from this Mad TV sketch. Most of the time, I just hear her mumbling under her breath and we laugh together as I walk through the world. But when things start to feel too dangerous, Deedee takes the lead.
And she will.cut.you.
It would be disingenuous to apologize for her. When she comes out I know something is threatening my sense of self. It feels like a life or death situation. There is danger about and the best defense is a good offense. She’s saved me many times and I love her.
In some discussions around social justice issues, Deedee takes charge. Particularly if I’ve been arguing all day for someone to consider a point of view different from their own. Especially when the conversation has devolved to personal insults. Especially when I feel like someone I love is in danger because of this person’s position. She’s more brave than I am, you see. Her need to be loved and accepted is subordinate to survival. Whereas I can spend a lot of time with my brow furrowed, nodding and trying to understand why you believe that some people are inherently criminal, or that you know what is best for a population you do not belong to, Deedee will let you know.
I am unapologetic. Well behaved women rarely make history, right? Love me, love Deedee.