Growing up gay ain’t easy. Growing up gay the first things I learned is that I was wrong.
I was wrong for being scared the ball would hit me. I was wrong for twirling the baton. I was wrong for wanting to take dance lessons. I was wrong for having a knack for color and redecorating my room over and over. I was wrong for being in the band and wanting to be the drum major …right up front. I was wrong for knowing the answers and being a good student. I was wrong for crushing on boys. I was wrong for just wanting to hang out with girls playing mystery date and gossiping. I was wrong for simply being me.
I learned to hate myself. I learned to hide myself. I learned to lie. I learned to loathe, loathe myself. I learned that I should try to be something I wasn’t.
Luckily I found a way to appreciate who and what I was. Luckily I learned it was ok to be gay. Luckily I got on my feet before I harmed myself in any permanent way.
However the scars remain.
It was those individuals before me that took a stand and they cleared a path. A path that I could follow to live better. I could learn to accept myself and one day love myself. I could learn and allow those scars to become strength.
However it isn’t easy.
It doesn’t have to be easy. I just must remember to keep moving forward and to love myself. To keep moving forward and broaden the path for others behind me.
Pride month isn’t about flagrant narcissistic pride. Pride month is about loving yourself and loving others. Loving yourself for being simply who you are and loving others for simply being who they are.
Oh…and I must remember that I am enough.