KYRA GAUNT: <3 SBF, 50, in a New Relationship with Being True


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Kyra D. Gaunt, Ph.D. TED Fellow. Teaching emerging adults to own their own
greatness through the study of political sociology, racism, anthropology and
ethnomusiclogy at Baruch College-CUNY.

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  • Yesterday, on Sep 11th, I celebrated my 50th birthday! And this is me on my 47th birthday, 3 years ago on 9-11 w/ NY’s Finest… when I was single.
  • My students call me Prof G but I’m known online as Kyraocity. I found trouble at my door, because I don’t plan. I live an inspired life and I’ve met lots of people online that way.Go on, knowing you carry scars with youCf. Charles FrazierCold Mountain
  • Being a performer and an innovative professor led me to become a TED Fellow. So radical openness online was a given for me. But I finally learned a lesson my mom’s been trying to teach me my whole life…
  • … A hard head makes a soft behind. I took a big risk marrying someone I barely knew on FB. This talk is about that failure. “FB relationship status: SBW, Being True at 50. “#36: The road less traveled by…life goes on. Ode to Frost.
  • This is a story about…pictures…of my love life, or the lies I told myself about what love is.
  • A study by OK Cupid Trends confirmed what I’d always believed: online dating sites are deadzones for SBW. So, last year ...
  • [So, last year…] …when I received this email from someone I considered a great FB friend, I was so ready—read: naïve or desperate—to get married. [I was love struck by the end of February.]
  • And before we even met, my Ph.D. brain teamed up with my MRS gene to convince me … he was the one!I got 5 of my students to record this video of us meeting at LaGuardia on March 31, 2011. The video got over 2000 views initially.
  • And so…we got married … on June 11th … in Central Park. And It was beautiful. We had a Facebook cake with an updates incl one from Michelle and Barack Obama. Really!! (tongue in cheek)
  • This was us on the 4th of July. For this American dream, I gave up everything!!! Left my job ANDbrooklyn (thatshlda been a sign) and moved to the bible belt!!
  • There were fireworks in our marriage signaling a big mistake. I went to bed with lies and fantasies my Ph.D. brain hadn’t planned for. I hadn’t acknowledged the possible risks. But I was finally a MRS.
  • On January 20th, 7 months after the wedding, I LEFT.I had let myself fall for someone I didn’t know. To insure I didn’t go back, I unfriended him and changed my FB status.
  • The mourning process was brutal. Had no money. Friends took me in. Insomnia!! But I started taking these close-up shots with my iPhone, Kyracatures I call them. Finding solace in things less than 2 inches wide.
  • ...the little things I had overlooked. The divorce was final May 8th. Had my first major outing and got to sing publicly for first time in over a year. I gave up a lot to be married.
  • Finally could afford a place of own andstarted practicing extreme self care. Started a divorce group that I advertised…on FB. // Shea butter on my face and hair every night. Brushed my teeth twice a day.
  • Drink 9 glasses of water. Walked every morning on the Williamsburg Bridge. I took this Kyracature there2 weeks ago. “SLOWDOWN JERKFACE THIS MEANS YOU!” (beat…) Wish I had seen the signs earlier.
  • [Wish I had seen the signs earlier] Ten days ago, I sold my rings. Single… again… at 50. Getting married shouldn’t mean throwing away the key to your own happiness.
  • So I had to break my vows. I loved with my whole heart, took a big risk, without thinking. And the hardest thing I ever did was to leave. [breath] I had to break my vows…
  • …if it was going to mean my being broken.. because of my own fantasies. I was too old to live a lie at 49. Leela Marie Middleton Seriously Kyra...your willingness to risk, to hurt, to learn, to grow...I hope you are proud of your grace and courage. You impact life with your vulnerablity and strength. I see you and my heart smiles with recognition.THIS IS THE BEST KIND OF LEADERSHIP IN LIFE; LOVING YOUR SELF NO MATTER WHAT RELATIONSHIP STATUS. NO MATTER HOW MANY FRIENDS YOU HAVE OR DON’T HAVE
  • …but on the other side, I’m grateful formy single life again and for loving myself in ways I hadn’t before. Big risks require planning … So here’s a toast: Plan for risks AND radical openness for the next 50! Bottoms Up!!
  • KYRA GAUNT: <3 SBF, 50, in a New Relationship with Being True

    1. 1. Kyra GAUNT<3 SBW, 50, in a New Relationship withBeing True@kyraocity
    2. 2. Online @ KyraOcity
    3. 3. A man who does not plan longahead will find trouble right at hisdoor. — Confucius Kyracatures: My iPhone Photography
    4. 4. : SBW/ Being True @ 50Kyra Gaunt, Ph.D. Ignite NYC 14 Kyracatures #36:
    5. 5. Love Stories Lies
    6. 6. SBW: Singled Out• Reply the most online• Least replied to … by all races; black men, too
    7. 7. 1 Private EmailJan 10, 2011:i hope this is the best year of your life.somewhere, somehow, someway, somedayi hope we cross paths in life.
    8. 8. Ph.D. + Mrs. = He‘s the One! 3/31/11
    9. 9. The Best Love Stories are the Real Ones? June 11, 2011
    10. 10. 3 Fourth of July - 2011 DeShawna: I adore this pic! Hanifah: A true independence day. Free to love and be loved. A.J.: This picture is so iconic!
    11. 11. It‘s hard to accept the truthwhen the lies were exactlywhat you wanted to hear. — unknown
    12. 12. FB Status ChangeUpdate Jan 21: Separated
    13. 13. For everything, a season. Kyracatures #20:A time to be born, Concentrate, the worst is past. a time to die.
    14. 14. June 2nd Cover Photo: Joe‘s Pub
    15. 15. 1 Extreme Self Care: In My Own Skin Kyracature before bed
    16. 16. Kyracature posted on 4SQ Marriage ain‘t nothin‗ to f*ck with.
    17. 17. The first principle is that you must not fool yourself – and you are the easiest to fool. — Richard FeynmanKyracature for Craiglist Ad
    18. 18. The Seoul Tower, South Korea.
    19. 19. When there is no enemywithin, the enemies outside you cannot hurt you. — African proverb
    20. 20. I want to know if you can disappoint another to be true to yourself. Oriah Mountain Dreamer ―The invitation‖THANK YOU!!Online Kyracatures: #30