This project, Childish Gambino’s Awaken, My Love! (2016), sat in my sewing bag 95% complete for 6+ months. While 2017 was an incredibly productive year for me, it was also an incredibly difficult one. It taught me a lot about cycles of trauma, narcissism, and abuse – as well as the courage it takes to break out of them.
I first had the idea to stitch the album when “Redbone” dropped a few weeks after the 2016 election (aka, the kickoff to Traumafest 2017). Like most well-intentioned, but self-centered White people, I sank into a deep depression immediately afterwards. The song gave me a beacon of hope and the cross-stitching was a relaxing way to calm my scattered mind.
Bonus: After Traumafest 2017, when I found myself in a new living situation with only about 10 boxes worth of possessions to my name, I’d lay on my friend’s guest room bed, holding my cat Lola, and watching YouTube for hours at a time. For whatever reason, of all the videos I watched, she was incredibly fascinated by this one, which further demonstrates Donald Glover’s musical genius (song starts at 1:17).