94 episodes later and I’m still in love with you and all of your bullshit.
Nearly 20 years ago, Sex & the City premiered and shook up pop culture. Women, women who were “old” by societal standards, living their full and often unapologetic life. And having sex. Lots of sex. When I first discovered SATC, my world was rocked. For a little black girl mildly aware that her family was by no means well off, the show offered a glimpse into a world of Manolo Blahnik Mary Jane’s, and Fendi galore. Needless to say my first foray into Candace Bushnell’s book-turned-series was fueled by my heightened awareness of different socioeconomic classes and sex. No shock there.
But as an young adult and now nearing my dreaded mid-twenties, SATC has taken on a whole new meaning.Yes, the idea of having “sex like a man” and loving last does still appeal to me on some level. But beyond that, the show and Carrie, Carrie Neurotic Bradshaw, give me faith. Countless articles have been written about Sarah Jessica Parker’s character, even a few interviews of SJP expressing her frustration, and I will not deny that Carrie was a piece of work. I mean she cheated on Aiden. She wears heels to the fucking woods. She’s a writer and didn’t back up her work. She expected Natasha to be gracious when she was sleeping with Big. She made her friend’s lives revolve around her every struggle. Homegirl was barely making rent. But I get it. I get Carrie.
You wear heels to the woods because for once you just want it to work out with a guy, for him to see you as some amazing siren to fall in love with. You want to be good enough for that perfect man who doesn’t get butterflies for you. You cheat on the “good guy” because you believe in love. You wait around for a guy thinking that the waiting for him proves your worth. You’d rather suffer with some of a person than none of them at all. You chase after breathless gasps, heartfelt kisses, and a love that is what you dream about each night. You hope that one day, someone will finally choose you. You get so caught up in the day-to-day, you forget that small things matter. You forget that the love from yourself, your friends, and the people who choose you without you begging for their presence, matter. You want people to forgive you because you know you’re a good person and it kills you to have someone think otherwise.
You just want to feel and be seen. I just want to feel and be seen, just like Carrie.
I’d never go so far to say that I identify with Carrie because we’re the same. I’ve never cheated. I’ve never been selfish to the extent of manipulating others and making all things about me. I don’t spend my rent money on shoes that I have to tip toe in because they’re 6 inches. But I always choose love. I will always choose to be alone and wait for what may never come versus being with someone who doesn’t leave me breathless. I still believe in fairy tales. I’m a perfect mess and am happy to share that with anyone who may benefit from it. I believe in romance. My heart beats really fast when I imagine the possibility. I freak myself out with this idea that the guy who wants me back will never appear. And like Carrie, I’d always choose Big.
For 13 years and 94 episodes, I’ve been in love with Carrie Bradshaw and Sex & the City. The show taught me to be bold, grand, and not give two fucks about who doesn’t “get it.” I will shout from the mountaintops “I love love. I want love. I want you” and can care less about who doesn’t like it. While I still struggle with staying out of my head about that last part (it can be quite awkward when I live in my truth and frequently get rejected) I try to live bold daily. Yeah, it’s a TV show. Yeah, the characters are fictional. But fiction finds its grounding in reality. And the reality is, a little piece of my heart will always beat for Carrie Bradshaw.