30 Days of Women: Sarah Bare

Sarah Bare

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Sarah Bare is without a doubt the worlds best neighbor.

I've lived in this building for 3 months now and there hasn't been a single day when she hasn't gone out of her way to help if she can.

A single guy moving into a place alone, a lot of things get forgotten.

Running out of garbage bags, only having 2 spoons then losing said spoons. The point is, that every time I need something

I can knock on the door and she greets me with a smile.

Rarely in life do you get a good neighbor and a great friend, at least not without planning it. We share in early morning coffees and late dinners. Play dates with our kids, laughs in the backyard and all night dance parties.

She truly is the light in my life that popped up when I needed it most.

-Flow Johnson

How old are you and where are you from?

-where do you live now?

I'm 34 years old, and I was born and raised in Racine, Wisconsin.

MKE, WI

How has Milwaukee treated you?

Milwaukee has been the backdrop to the bulk of my life story.

I've lost everything, and grown from seed an entirely new self here. Milwaukee is in my bones.

Do you find it difficult to be a black woman in this city?

I originally moved to the East side in 2001, when there were only a handful of POC my age.  Yeah, it's difficult. I'm profiled & harassed, but that's par for the course. Luckily social media has made it easier to connect, and converse, and find solidarity with brown skinned women and mothers in spite of the suffocation of segregation.

How's it raising a daughter here?

She's 2, and really fun to hang out with! For her everything is an adventure, fun and new, and when we're together its impossible to see the world any other way. I worry a lot, though; that I won't be able to afford the quality of education she deserves, that she could be harmed by people masquerading as protectors, that there won't always be safe water to drink, or green spaces to play in.

What keeps you here?

Milwaukee keeps surprising me. I've been building my client base as a massage therapist, loving the live music scene, building community, supporting fine art, and generally been blown away by the love I've been shown here.

When/where do you plan on going?

No plans yet, but Im open to suggestions! Somewhere with less winter!

Whats the funniest story you have from your elementary/middle school years?

I wish I could remember those years more fondly, but I honestly have only damaged memories of trying to have a normal life while living in an oppressive and abusive home environment.

Whats been the funniest thing Isis has done so far?

So many things! Lately she's been making this deep voice and parading around and saying things like, "I NOT A BABY! I BIG! I SCARY!" Or she'll walk around on all fours and growl at people.

When you feel like you can't get out of bed,

What drives you to do so?

I have one day a week that I can stay in bed. Outside of that, It's just not an option.

Can you think of something wild that you did often before having a daughter that you think about every so often?

I used to dance allll the time. There were parties, and lots of abandoned warehouses to explore.

Favorite spot in the city?

I love the 360° view from the top of Reservoir hill, or a sailboat out past the breakwater, the food at Maxie's Southern Comfort, the cuts at Gee's Clippers, the coffee at Kickapoo...

Biking spot?

I like riding through the city, finding new shortcuts, back alleys and street art.

Favorite dish to cook?

I love to cook, and cook every day. I think my fave to make is Moussaka, but only because its my favorite to eat!

The most awkward experience/interaction you've had this year?

I had a really uncomfortable interaction with a man who had very different expectations for his massage experience...

When was the last time you were in love?

Always.

Are you currently in love?

Yes.

What drove your decision to pursue massage?

I grew up on a holistic household. I've only ever been to a medical doctor a handful of times my entire life because nutrition, preventative care, herbal medicine & exercise have been instilled in me as the way to live my best life. I want everyone to feel so empowered, to be so in tune with their bodies that they know what they need and can get what they need before it becomes disease. Massage is an important step in connecting and relaying this message directly to those who need it.

What's your favorite part of the job?

Connecting people to a deeper sense of self, to humanity, to the calm that's there when you realize we are all on this journey together. There is a lot of fear out here. I feel it, and it's important that we care for each other.

Biggest regret and what did you learn from it?

I got baptized into a religion I didn't believe in at a really young age. It seemed there were no other options at the time. I learned that I always have a choice, and that even if I can only see one path ahead of me, it's okay to walk into the dark.

If you could tell your 24 year old self something. What would it be?

Get more tattoos!

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Photography by Flow Johnson

arts & cultureFlow Johnson