Updated: Jul 8, 2022
Well I have, just not to you, because you are in my present. You’ve met me in a time where I’ve let go of who I used to be as I’ve continued to move forward to become the person I am now. I have spent time reconciling with my past and working through my own shame. It’s how I’ve become the person and mother I am today, it’s how I continue to work on deconstructing racism, being a better ally to the LGBTQ+ community, and embracing body positivity.
“When you know better, you do better” -Maya Angelou
Social media growth comes with a lot of opinions on who you are and what you’re doing with your life. People start to view you as a source of entertainment. They want to fuel the fire to add more drama into their own feed–this is about them, not you. They forget that you are just the same as they are, a human living their life, except the difference is that you’ve become vulnerable enough to add your thoughts and space to the public with hopes that the right people will find you and you can form a sense of community together.
You don’t hide behind an anonymous user name and an avatar profile picture because you’re not ashamed of embracing your identity, even when that comes with embracing the mistakes you’ve made and will continue to make in life. That’s what we do as humans, we make mistakes, we learn, and we grow.
As soon as people learned Luna is autistic, my platform became an even bigger target. A mother living her life and sharing her goal of raising her daughter around the world is amazing, but the moment she shares her goal of raising her autistic daughter around the world, she’s now viewed differently for speaking out about her child's disability.
When I was 21, I had a vulgar mindset and an unfiltered social presence. I tweeted disturbing racial slurs, homophobic thoughts, and shamed people for their weight.
There is no excuse for this behavior. The words I used and my behavior in work spaces, especially around children, were unacceptable.
My digital footprint from 2013 is shameful. I’m deeply sorry to those who I’ve hurt with these tweets.
My past does not define me. My past does not define my family. What is important now is that I am identifying and unlearning learned cultural and social behaviors from my upbringing. I now understand the privilege I hold due to the color of my skin and the systematic racism that the United States was built on. As a new mother in 2020, I knew I had to do even more to raise my daughter better as I envisioned humanity being even kinder.
If you have made mistakes in life and moved forward from them, you are not alone. If your past views no longer reflect your current views, you are not alone. You do not need to hold on to shame from your past for the rest of your life. It is absolutely okay to reflect, grow, and let go. To move forward is to be better. Those who do not want to move forward with you, don’t have to, and your life will continue to be just as beautiful.
This change in my mindset and my behavior is a constant and active choice to continuously unlearn. This change has happened through submerging myself into different cultures around the world. This change has come from reading books like "How to Be an Antiracist" by Ibram X. Kendi. This change has come from letting go of the ideas I had subconsciously based the first quarter century of my life on and learning to be better. I started following black creators on instagram, listening to LGBTQ+ voices, and choosing to take a college course about prejudice, stereotyping and discrimination.
I now know better, so I can keep trying my best to do better.
If you want change in this world, you must also accept those who have changed. All I can do is continue moving forward from the girl I was 9 years ago. For those who can’t move forward from my past actions— I do understand. For those who will continue moving forward and meet me where I am in the present and move beyond a person I no longer identify as, thank you.
With love from the Lunaverse,
Resources for deconstructing racism:
How to Be an Antiracist by Ibram X. Kendi
Resources for supporting LQBTQ
Resources for body positivity
Please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org if you have additional resources I can add to the list for myself & for others, or if you would like to be a guest writer on this blog.