I had a strange conversation the other day about law school. I said, “I never choose to go to law school.” Yeah, I dreamt about being a lawyer when I was a kid. The only reason I remember this is because I wrote it down in a “scrapbook” I created in grade school. And, I wanted to be a lawyer only because my older sister wanted to be lawyer–I had no idea what a lawyer did.
My comment made me laugh on the inside because we talk about choice and sex work a lot. “I never choose to do sell my body,” some people say. While others say, “I choose to do sex work.” Why is this focus on “choice”? Like, I never planned or had this dying need to go to law school. I am thankful I am here though.
It all began when I went to college, only after being out of school for many years and escorting/stripping for just as many. But what made me go back to school? I was getting tired of living in a dancer house where, like I said in this article, the stray cats roamed in the basement getting fat on the mice that shared the house. I was getting tired of that routine.
So, I applied to college. I graduated college and once I figured out I needed much more “experience” to get a job in my field (law clerking), I decided to apply to university. Once in university, I had no idea how to navigate the system. I had no idea what a minor or a major meant. So, by the time it came to pick my specialization, I choose criminology. I had no idea what criminology was when I picked it. “This looks fun,” I thought. Then, the time came to graduate from university, and I had to again decide, “what next?!” I applied to two masters programs, one in women’s studies and one in criminology. I only got into one. In that same instance, I also applied to two law schools. Everyone kept saying, “Apply to more!” Thanks, but it costs more to apply to more law schools. I applied to the schools I could afford. And, I got into both of the schools (Thank you for having me!).
But now that the words came out of my mouth, I never choose to go law school… I still am thankful that I did what I had to do to survive. School helped me to survive. Also, I think it kind of scares myself, maybe others, that I can be so honest. I never choose to be here–where ever here is…. Yet, if it wasn’t for these experiences, including my encounters in sex work, I don’t know where I would be. And if it wasn’t for sex work, I wouldn’t be where I am now and for that, I am thankful.