Why I Always Stay Fab

By HJ Rose

My name is HJ Rose, and I’m from Zambia. I came to China in 2006 with my family after my father was appointed ambassador of the Republic of Zambia in China. When my family left, I stayed because I was already enrolled at the University Of International Business And Economics, where I studied Economics and majored in International Trade. Now I’m a Fashionista, Fashion Blogger/ Vlogger/ Stylist, and Educator, and have lived in Beijing for the past 15 years.

“I often wonder what I’d do if there weren’t any books in the world.”
― James Baldwin , Giovanni’s Room

For as long as I can remember, I have always known that I was attracted to men; never at any point did I ever think that it was a phase or anything of the kind. I knew who I was from a very young age; my family also knew, and that was never an issue. I was just there, did my thing, and that was just the way it was. By that, I don’t mean in a tolerant kind of way. I think my upbringing has a lot to do with my high self-esteem, confidence, empathy, acceptance, open-mindedness, and self-love.

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“For nothing is more unbearable, once one has it, than freedom.”
― James Baldwin, Giovanni’s Room

Homosexuality in Zambia is not a crime, but the act is what is considered a crime. Not too long ago, two men were arrested for “practicing homosexuality” – very Oscar Wilde, right! But all jokes aside, that’s still happening in this day and age. People can go to prison for “practicing homosexuality” for 5 to 10 years which even now is still beyond my comprehension. Most people have had this big “coming out” moment. On the contrary, I never had that – which is not a complaint – neither did I feel the need to, which is something those who know me personally are better placed to understand.

“With everything in me screaming No! yet the sum of me sighed Yes.”
― James Baldwin, Giovanni’s Room

It’s fascinating to me when I see people in 2021 being outraged when they hear that someone is sexually fluid. Some say that it’s a trend or those sexually fluid people just want to do it for shock value. James Baldwin talked about sexual fluidity in the 50s. His books, Giovanni’s Room and Just Above My Head, made me understand the complexities of sexuality, racial tensions, and interracial relationships when I was younger.

At the end of the day, people are just people – like Oprah would say, every human is looking for the same thing, everyone is looking to fulfill their most genuine, the highest expression of themselves.

Don’t forget to follow a Queen on Instagram @hobby_jacobs

Photos: Courtesy of HJ Rose

3 thoughts on “Why I Always Stay Fab

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