I know this blog is meant for talk about books and writing and the craft and all that, but it just hit me that tomorrow is October 11th.
That means tomorrow is National Coming Out Day.
That means I’ll have gone another 365 days without talking to my parents, siblings, and best friends about the fact that I identify as Pansexual. Which is fine, it’s not like they need to know. I’m not even dating right now (because there’s just been no one—not for my lack of trying. I’ll flirt with anything that has legs), and that’s been my excuse for not telling them, I guess. But saying it doesn’t matter… Is that me lying to myself or putting up a front? I’m not sure. It’s like an open flesh wound. I don’t want to look too closely at it and THAT IS the truth.
Anyway, last year a friend of mine came out in a big way and although I wouldn’t say his life is all sunshine and smiles about it, he did have this to say about being HONEST with everyone:
“One year ago, on National Coming Out Day, I came out publicly. What does that mean? Well, first off, it means that I’m gay. But second, and more importantly, it represents the day that I chose to strive for authenticity. Am I now always authentic? Of course not. I fuck up all the time. But it’s a goal. It’s something I work toward every single day. I work to remove another layer of the mask, another anti-social, loveless birthmark. I work to remove anything that defines me, without my consent, socially, politically, personally, spiritually.
It’s been an interesting year, though—both for me and, no doubt, for those who’ve dealt with me. For those of you who’ve rallied through the good times with chants of love—Shots! Shots! Shots!—and for those who’ve listened through the bad, thank you. I cannot begin to express my gratitude. Really, thank you. Thank you to anyone who listened, anyone who dealt with their own discomfort in order to make me more comfortable, to anyone who gave me a hug when a smile would’ve been enough, and especially to those who opened up about their own struggles, those who shared their most intimate secrets with me. You are a special bunch and I know that you will, without question, only burn brighter with time.
And to everyone who accepted me—not as a gay man, but as me, the real me—thank you, too. Your acceptance, whether in the open or in silence, has given me the confidence to explore myself and my identity. I have nothing but love for you fine, fine people.
To those still in the darkness: keep fucking burning, burn brighter than the fires of hell to find your way to heaven—that light is there, within you, waiting to manifest into a life worthy of Van Gogh’s gaze or Mark Twain’s wit. Be that art. Be beauty. Be life.”
To my friend who wrote the above… I love you and you’re so perfect to me and you’re such an inspiration to me.
Too many thoughts about it all. In the head and in the heart.
There are so many people unknowingly waiting on me to be honest with them. But I think the issue here is that I don’t want it to matter, because that feels like saying, “HEY. CARE ABOUT ME!” and that’s just NOT me. I know this probably does matter, in the grand scheme of things. Not JUST for me, but for people like me who are seriously trapped in their own silence.
Even now, I’m struggling with whether or not to share this on Twitter, because I’m not sure if this is me crying about something that’s just a blip on the universe’s radar or not. I’m GOING TO share it because if ANYONE reads this and happens to feel the same way then it won’t have been for naught. HEY, it will say. YOU AND I? WE’RE TOGETHER, this will say to them. And I was that “anyone” at some point in the past too, I think.
I only wrote this to say that I am a work in progress. And if you are too, then that’s okay, darling.