I feel so unbelievably vulnerable right now—like standing naked in front of a crowd, skin unzipped revealing my insides. That’s how vulnerable I feel. When I am with Z, I am a raw little rug burn, trying to navigate how to be around each other in this new relationship.

I am now also signed up for online dating. I posted pictures of myself. I wrote a blurb. I’m out there for the world to see. Creeps might jerk off to the pictures. Students might see me and laugh. I’m doing it because, for the sea of literally thousands of people online, there are a small handful who actually look \ human, like me, like people who are also out there being vulnerable. I am doing it to find and forge connections with those people.

And let me tell you that it all feels very, very uncomfortable. I feel vulnerable. I am growing and it is good, I know. But in the meantime, trust me, it’s making me squirm.

Odalisque in Grisaille by Ingres, photo by Mark Skrobola 


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