“Give me just a little bit longer
Give me just little bit stronger
Give me just a little bit longer
Give me just a little just one more try” Tory Lanez
My legs long like spiders emerge from the backseat of a chauffeured black Rolls Royce revealing satin canary yellow Manolo Blahniks that crunch against the pavement. My cobalt blue ostrich feather jacket dancing in the wind. Sixteen steps from the car to the doorman expecting my arrival. Eyes shielded in over-sized canary yellow cat eye sunglasses. Lips decorated in Bauhaus pink. Loud clicks of my stilettos echo across the marble lobby to a private elevator. Three….Two….One the elevator opens to a fourth floor suite, the largest suite in the hotel. Three little giggling bodies full of life race around the couch waiting to be chased by their nannies. I sit my Manolos on the floor drop my coat on the table by the elevator and sink into the couch taking in my surroundings as I do everyday when I arrive home.
4,500 square feet in New York City. Fixtures plated in 24kt gold, a grand piano resting in the corner, a chef’s kitchen with restaurant grade appliances, a formal dining room for twelve, glistening gold chandeliers, a massive marble fireplace, crown molding, heated hardwood floors, three bedrooms, three and a half baths with mosaic floors and wall tiling, a separate shower and claw-foot tub with gold feet, over-sized closets with dressing rooms, wall mounted flat screens and iPads that control both the room temperature and access to guest services. A standard room on a lower floor acts as our closet; clothes filled racks from wall to wall, bags, shoes; such a cluster fuck of shit I had employ someone to manage the room and commission them to create a manifest of each item for organization and easy retrieval. The entire suite designed with the ambiance of Louis XV.
A state of the art fitness room I use to work out alone every night before bed with Beyonce blasting through my earbuds. I’d then retire to an immense king size master bedroom with its own entryway and living room. And my favorite room is the library where the kids use to study and I use to write because for whatever reason people still want to hear what I have to say even though I was no longer the broke, homeless trans girl who could write her ass off. I am an editor, the human barbie, human hanger, the cover girl and mom that brings life to the lyrics “Let me cover yo shit in glitter I can make it gold” (Rihanna). I was so fucking fabulous Merriam Webster included a pull out poster of me in the dictionary under glamorous.
Every three months with the help of a full time staff we pack our things into black Dior trunk luggage and rotate to the next hotel. “Living in a fantasy” (Wale). The Royal Suite at The Plaza. The Central Park Suite at the Ritz Carlton. The Dior suite at the St. Regis. and The Peninsula Suite at the Peninsula. Over and over again. The Plaza, the Ritz, St. Regis, the Peninsula, The Plaza, the Ritz, St. Regis, the Peninsula.
What an odyssey of experiences for the destitute black trans woman to rise from the ashes to go from being homeless and staying in a public bathroom to now living in hotel rooms costing upwards of 20,000 dollars a night and raising children when there was no one to raise her (in an effective and affirm way). The truth is I don’t care about being a success story or some grand exception I just want a life centered around the two most important things in my life; my children and fashion. My identity as a mom is the most important thing in my life. It’s a dream of capitalism that is also a dream of safety. I am safe surrounded my fashion, the objects money can buy, my children, bodyguards, a full time staff to attend to all of my needs. In many ways capitalism seems like the only mode of safety for women like me. Money can buy me out of death trans women experience, the catcalling women experience and the overt racism black people experience. Money can also purchase the family I cannot produce on my own.
These images that replay in my mind, the life I dream to have are what keep me moving. They aid my survival. Material things are the meaning of life to me because that’s what I’ve been conditioned to aspire to. My life will be about them, my children. Raising human beings to be decent people. People who learn to treat others with value and care, the opposite of the way society treated their mother. And one day when I am finally a mother, finally stable and finally a career woman, I will teach that instability to my children in the most stable way possible; change. I will teach them to never settled too long in one place. I will teach them to embrace newness and change before it is forced upon you. My children and I the most important people in the world to me living in our own definition of security. I wouldn’t know what to do with a space I actually owned and it makes me uncomfortable to be in a place too long so I took that power into my own hands and created the system the cycle I wanted to live in and the cycle I knew how to control.
“Remember when I didn’t have a thing baby, I swear man all I do was, all I ,all I had to was, dreaaaaam baby, dreaaaam baby, dreaaaam baby, all I had to do was Dream” – Tory Lanez