The Truth Board

A Blog by the Editors of
The Truth About the Fact: An International Journal of Literary Nonfiction

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Location: Los Angeles, California, United States

The Truth About the Fact: A Journal of Literary Nonfiction is an international journal committed to the idea that excellence in the art of letters can play a vital role in transforming the planet we share.

Monday, April 29, 2013

A Late Self-Discovery at LMU: Finding A New Voice

Prior to blogging on the Truth Board, I wasn't particularly active in social media—Facebook, Twitter, and other forms of self-promotion via social networking. I don't mean that in a judgmental way, but I guess I didn't think my "voice" on the internet was particularly important. How influential can a "status update" on Facebook about the type of cereal I ate this morning be meaningful? Who cares?

I consider myself a politically active and opinionated person. In these matters, I do think my voice matters, but I haven't had the opportunity to express myself adequately until now—until taking this class and posting on the Truth Board.

Blogging has provoked me to examine my life, experiences, and aspirations in a new way. Over the past year or so, I've begun to develop my "roots"—where I come from, how I identify myself, what I want to do after college.

I'm proud of where I grew up in Boston. I love myself as a lesbian and a part of a larger, marginalized (but passionately empowered) community. My desire to "change the world"—as cliché as that may sound—relates to politics. I want to influence policy, advocate for gay rights and women's rights; I want to encourage people to be more accepting of those outcasts known as "others" in America. Finally, I want to encourage political dialogue—productive but not contentious.

All of these new aspirations have sprouted from the painful experiences in my life—the suicide of my step-mother, my substance abuse, realizing that I am gay. But overcoming pain allows me to walk a little taller, feel a little more confident, and be more open to others about who I am.

While I have so much to say, I don't know where to start...

First, start a blog or something like it...

Second, find a following (this is the part that terrifies me—what if no one wants to hear me and listen to me?) Perhaps the solution is to get a group together, somehow, to have multiple voices engaging and talking about important subjects. Then, it's not just my voice, but it's others voices, too. People like to talk about themselves—why not turn that desire into something meaningful?

Third, get people interested. Market it. Encourage people to read it.

But when I think about this, this very process of gathering voices together and spreading them out into the world is exactly what the journal—The Truth about the Fact—does.

Whether my future leads me into political media, running for office, or simply writing about important issues, I'm happy to realize I have a voice in such a large and diverse world.

Writing is therapeutic and an introspective process. But taking this a step further, interpersonal dialogue is even more important. When I started as a transfer student and commuter to LMU, I was silent in the college community. I knew no one and didn't reach out to talk to any of my fellow students. The only true dialogue that occurred was with my professors. But then this Spring 2013 semester began, and classes were smaller. I felt more comfortable reaching out and talking to others. Hearing someone call my name, "Mikayla!" down the hall sent chills up my spine because it made me realize I was a somebody—a contributor to the community in which I live, and people notice me.

The transitional years from high school to college to the real world are difficult for everyone, and I'm happy to say that I've found peace with myself and a direction I want to pursue.

Whether I am the silent, insecure early version of myself or the more open, comfortable version of myself, I appreciate those simple gestures that people have made to me—whether it's someone holding the door for me, waving to me, calling my name, or asking me questions about my life, I am so proud to be a part of this community at LMU...and even prouder to know that I have an influential voice in this world that I should use. So thank you.

-Mikayla Galvin


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