My niece’s birthday is next month, and my brother texted to tell me his girlfriend will be there. This will be her first time meeting the family (not counting his kids, of course). He has not officially told my parents about her, but his kids have (naturally). So when I was talking on the phone with my mom, I mentioned to her that she’ll get to meet the girlfriend soon. The excitement in her voice was palpable. And it erased any desire of mine to mention my own girlfriend, to suggest that perhaps she may be at the party, as well.
Because all I could think about is how my mom’s reaction to my own news would not be one of excitement, but, rather, the exact opposite.
And it brings to mind that there is still a part of me that feels if it were possible, I would wish to be straight. I know I shouldn’t feel that way, but there it is. If I were straight, my parents would not be in denial over who I am. If I were straight, I wouldn’t have lost most of my friends when I came out. If I were straight, I could live anywhere I liked in the U.S. without concern. If I were straight… well, I wouldn’t be me. But I would fit into other’s expectations for my life much better.
I am happy with who I am. I love my girlfriend. I love that I finally know what it’s like to be happy and comfortable with who I am. But there is just the tiniest bit of internal homophobia that crops up at times, and I hate it. I want to know how to cross over into being 100% happy that I’m gay. But maybe there will always be that small part of me that is aware of how disappointed my parents are in me, that I will not be able to make them proud or happy.
I hope not.
I can’t believe how time as flown. I also can’t believe how little I’ve been blogging. I just haven’t had the energy. Or at least, that’s the excuse I’m going to use.
I’m not doing resolutions of any sort this year. Overall, I’m pleased with the direction my life is going. I’m pleased with the choices I’m making. I don’t feel an overwhelming urge to change my life in a major way at this point.
I have a job I like. I have good friends who support me. I have an active dating life (haha, maybe too active). My family is getting used to the fact that I’m gay. I’m eating okay, and although I need to get back on the exercise track and lose a bit of weight, that’s a lifelong struggle.
Today I’m making slow cooker butter chicken. So far, it’s looking perfect. I’m also making homemade no-knead bread (lazy me) for blackened carrot & cannellini bean sandwiches (which are way better than they sound). I’m not going out tonight, so this is my way of celebrating.
I hope you all have a safe and fun New Years Eve.
The other shoe finally dropped, but I’m not sure it dropped so much as I tossed it.
On Sunday, C invited me to her place for coffee. We talked for hours. But the more we talked, the more some of my concerns solidified in my mind. Concerns that had already been playing at the edges of my mind, and now were brought to the forefront.
She doesn’t seem to understand that being queer is not the same as being straight. Every way that she talked about relationships and dating and sex was so heteronormative. Now, in her defense, she’s never dated a woman and has only dated men thus far. But there was just a huge lack of knowledge of anything queer. I mean, she didn’t even know what dysphoria was.
Anyway, I brought up all this to her the next day over text. The long and short of it was that she doesn’t like to identify with labels. I tried to explain how being queer isn’t a label so much as it’s a way of life, a community, an identity. She acknowledged her implicit acceptance of the straight label, which annoyed me even more.
So that was basically the end of that. Dinner was cancelled, and I haven’t talked to her since.
I’m okay with a lack of experience (in many ways, I feel like I have very little experience myself), but I don’t want to be in a relationship with someone who wants nothing to do with being queer and who wants to model their relationship after het-relationships. I’m not into mimicking a straight relationship. Especially with her being femme and me presenting masculine–I am not going to be the “man” of the relationship. I’m gay for a reason.
Straight friends don’t seem to understand this, though. My queer friends do (they all say she sounds super straight). It’s things like this that I don’t think I should bother bringing up to the straight friends. I hate having to defend to them what my other friends both understand and think is reasonable.
But I already have two dates lined up, so you know I’m doing just fine.
One of my coworkers took me out to lunch last week as a goodbye. Despite being a very serious Christian (he’s leaving to Papua New Guinea to be a missionary in about a year), he was one of my favourite coworkers. He never made me feel like I was wrong for being who I am, and in fact, never expressed an opinion about it at all, other than live and let live (which is his life motto, essentially).
We had a conversation about faith–he was very interested, since from things I had said, he knew I’d been to both bible college and seminary, not to mention he had seen my Christian tattoo on my forearm. It was a good talk, actually. But it did lead me to say what I’ve thought for some time now: that I didn’t leave my faith so much as was kicked out. I was never welcome, for a progressive list of reasons–being a woman, being a feminist, being single, being gay (although, being gay makes being single better, so they can pretend I’m not having gay sex).
But as much as I tried to be part of the church, I couldn’t find my place. And nothing about me fit in. I tried, I tried so hard. I eventually gave up. I mean, why be part of a religion that doesn’t even want you?
To be honest, that’s as much as I have given thought to questions of faith. Someday, I need to give it more, really think about where I sit, other than on the outside.