I always knew I wasnt like the other kids. I couldn’t help but be that but a lot of the time I just wanted to be like everybody else. I wanted to have the parasuco pants (I can’t spell it… Sorry). I wanted to speak like everybody else (I taught myself how to eventually) and not be called whatever nickname it was at the time. I wanted to go to the same parties. Everything. I didn’t just want to be a girl scout and an artist and a nerd who loved documentaries and planets, a poet and all these things that most other kids werent interested in, even though I loved it. I didn’t want to feel alone in the things I loved, even though I seemed to be the only one near me who did. Especially as a girl. Since I got introduced to Prince via my mom and my aunt when I was in middle school, I kinda felt that way less and less. He went everywhere with me, in my CD Walkman and my tweetie bird cd carrying case. When I went to college and started using mp3 players and then smartphones, I uploaded my Purple Rain (which I think my big cousin Kevin got me for Christmas one year) and best of cds (which I think is my aunt’s anyway lol!… Prince is a way we connect and I love her and the bond we’ve had over the years more than she will ever realize) to my laptop, each laptop, crash after crash, and kept transfering them to whatever player or phone I used. Seldom do I go a day without listening to him. I could disappear into his genius. Being different and tons of things at once was okay. Being that firestarter who couldn’t help but speak or indicate criticism was okay. Still being soft was okay. Being complex and misunderstood was okay. Having parent issues was not abnormal. Being unapologetically Black, and doing so while being weird and standing up for yourself was a good thing. I could get lost in that vibe. I still do. This man has carried me through in some part, from puberty til now. Prince, Erykah Badu, Chaka Khan, A Tribe Called Quest, Kendrick Lamar… sometimes James Brown… I seldom go a day without listening to.