vows and nearing 49

I need to write my wedding vows.

It’s 11:01 on Saturday morning, exactly two weeks from my wedding day.

I need to write my wedding vows.

Yet, here I am floating in the pool, watching the reflection of the pool water bounce through the trees. It’s so quiet and with five dogs, that’s a rare occurrence. I know there is a list of things to get done today and only a few hours left to do them. I should probably do some laundry and the dishes from last night’s dinner.


But I am so relaxed.

When did I become so relaxed?

I look down at my body and there are white lines on my stomach and I wonder what they are and realize that the sun doesn’t tan in those lines because the skin rolls together there and the rays can’t reach that area and when I stretch out, the lines appear. I guess I am a little fat. Just a little.

I see the stretch marks on my thighs. They have been there since I was a teenager, growing faster than my skin would allow. They appear more pronounced with the darkness of my summer tan. I see them but I don’t react to them. I rub them lightly with my fingers, following the lines absentmindedly. I am 49 soon. Right around the corner from 50. I’m old. But I don’t really care about it. I notice it but I don’t mind it.

When did I stop hating my body?

I need to write my vows…five more minutes, I tell myself and then notice that twenty minutes has passed and I am still floating along, doing nothing.

When did I start allowing myself to do nothing?

I am thinking about my brother, imagining his skin, imagining the last conversation we could have had if I hadn’t been so stubborn. He would be 52 in a few days. 52 years old. He turned 50 without me. He turned 50 without a call or a text or a card. I wish my brother could come to the wedding. I wish I could talk to him and touch him on the hand and look into his blue eyes and remind him how much he mattered to me, matters to me. I long for some sense of resolution and forgiveness and acceptance. I feel wetness at my eyes because there will never be a chance for that final conversation. I let him down. Yet, I am not angry at myself. I forgive myself because I know I did what I could with what I had at the time and that I do more and better when I can. I know I am someone who strives to improve. I know I am not perfect and I forgive myself for it, generally. I still get annoyed with myself when I am not the perfect person I imagined I would be but I recognize that perfection doesn’t exist and that we learn and grow and change and evolve into something different but still imperfect.

When did I start being so kind and forgiving to myself?

It’s 11:33 now and I am still floating and I need to write my vows but now I find myself thinking about my children. Not in a frantic, anxious way, more like pictures of them are floating along in my mind and I am watching them transform into the people they are becoming and I am scared and excited for them. I am honored to be their mother. I don’t get to see them as much as I wish I could see them. It’s harder and harder to connect with them as they grow older. I know how little impact I can have now on my almost adult children besides being more present with them. Simply being present has been such a struggle for me for so long. It’s not a struggle much anymore. Some days are better than others but overall, I am more present with them than I have ever been before.

When did I start becoming more present?

The sun has shifted and I find myself shivering a bit because the pool water is warmer than it is in shade. It must be noon now and I need to write to vows.

I am struck like a slap in the face as I recognize that these are my vows, these thoughts, these floating along musings, this realization of who I have become because you love me and I love you.

More relaxed, more kind to myself and to others, more present, and more forgiving.

You, my love, have broken down my walls. You’ve shown me what love is and can be and should be.

You’ve taught me to slow down. You’ve taught me to relax and enjoy my life more. You’ve taught me to love my body by watching how much you love my body. I shudder sometimes when I see you, seeing me. I don’t know what to do it with it. I like it even though it’s scary sometimes. You let myself be loved. You have taught me to forgive myself for being imperfect.

I want so much to love you completely and I can’t do that until I start loving myself completely. So I will. I do. You’ve asked me to be present and I want to make you happy so I am fighting harder against my tendency to shut down and tune out. You love me anyway, exactly as I am. But I long to make you completely happy, forever, so I try harder to be present and it’s getting easier.

It impacts every aspect of my life, our love…how I am in friendships, work, with my children and family.

I can’t wait to be your wife. I can’t wait until you are my wife.

Oh, there you are, walking outside in your red stripey bathing suit, looking so cute.

Damn, you are hot, I think.

“How’s it going?” you ask.

“Done”, I respond. “Let’s get in the pool.”



The Little Things

I was talking to a friend today about the pain I have experienced in letting go of my children over the past four years. I went from being the primary caretaker of my children to being a part time mom pretty much overnight. There was some transition but for the most part, I went from spending every day and every night with my kids to not seeing them for days at a time…not knowing where they were or what they were doing for days. It hurt me, to let go. It’s been a process, a journey and I am still working through it. My friend understood. She’s a mom. It didn’t require much explanation, really. She got it right away. I mentioned how frustrated I get when my non-mom friends give me parenting advice. I do recognize that people who don’t have children CAN actually separate themselves from the experience of actually being a parent to know what advice to give. They (the non-parent folks) are often right. But knowing what to do and actually doing it are totally different things. Feel my pain and loss and sense of isolation…the way I suddenly felt unnecessary in my children’s lives…how hard it was for me..know what that feels like and then you will know that your loving and kind advice to “accept it and stop parenting out of guilt” or “your kids are fine” and “your kids adore you, no one can take your place” while correct, is completely lost on my aching heart.


Why do people always try to describe things that simply cannot be understood without experiencing them? Artists, poets, writers,  and musicians dedicate their lives to trying to illustrate the feeling of falling in love, being a parent, spending a lifetime in a marriage or relationship, friendship, grief, birth, death and even divorce. All these big, giant, crazy, knock you on your knees life experiences that simply must be had to understand them. It’s the big stuff that is impossible to describe accurately, the major life events that until you have had them, you can’t really wrap your brain around them. And when you have, the people that you know who have had those experiences too become a sisterhood all on its own. Oh, your mom is dead? Yeah, sister…I get it. You are divorced, back in the work force, sharing your kids with a man you couldn’t be married to and yet must co-parent effectively with…along with his new wife? Mmmm…hmmm, yeah..sit next to me my sister and we will hold hands and know each other’s pain. Did you fall foolishly, madly, deeply in love with someone who wasn’t deserving of your love and turned out to be an asshole? Oh my, that’s a shitty life experience we share, let’s acknowledge that craptastic experience quietly and put it back where it goes, on the shelf of the things we don’t talk about because they are too dangerous. Some things you just have to do before you can really talk them with any authority. And even then, to the inexperienced your words are meaningless.


AH, but those of us who have been madly, deeply in love see poems like this one and it takes our breath away…it’s so right in the description.


[i carry your heart with me(i carry it in]


i carry your heart with me(i carry it in

my heart)i am never without it(anywhere

i go you go,my dear;and whatever is done

by only me is your doing,my darling)

i fear

no fate(for you are my fate,my sweet)i want

no world(for beautiful you are my world,my true)

and it’s you are whatever a moon has always meant

and whatever a sun will always sing is you

here is the deepest secret nobody knows

(here is the root of the root and the bud of the bud

and the sky of the sky of a tree called life;which grows

higher than soul can hope or mind can hide)

and this is the wonder that’s keeping the stars apart

i carry your heart(i carry it in my heart)


Yes, ee cummings, yes, you totally get it. I carry your heart, it’s the tree of life, it’s the secret that nobody knows…


And this song that perfectly illustrates heartbreak:



Ne me quitte pas (click link to hear song)



Oh my sweet Jacgues I feel you. I feel you. Your pain is my pain.


I have been thinking about the little things lately and how much more they matter in the grand scheme of a lifetime.  The tiny little connections that I can grasp, that heal my soul, that carry me forward from one day to the next. I think we focus way too much on the big things (I do) and yet, it’s the day to day that matters most. And as I have been moving through my life lately, I have become suddenly, incredibly aware of the absolute brilliance of these little things.


Date night with my youngest at Main Event and playing the Ghostbusters Game (I hate games) and I am doing it, I am shooting all the ghosts with my laser gun and we are laughing.


A run alone in Central Park on a trip alone to New York City where time stopped for just a few moments and I realized, “this is who I am, a woman who travels alone to New York City and runs in Central Park alone, and goes to the theatre alone and is fine, happy, not lonely, not scared at all.”


My daughter and I, discussing adulthood and she is listening to me, hearing me, actually wanting my advice, that’s new, that’s cool and I remember to shut up long enough for her to speak and she does and she’s smart and I like her.


Walking, again in New York, with the sun on my face, the people all around me. I am present. I am seeing everything around me. I am not so lost in my own thoughts that I could be anywhere, I am actually seeing the world around me clearly. I am so alive. All of my nerve endings are pulsating and I see it all around me and I recognize how rarely I feel this way and it’s so good.


A talk with my son, my difficult son, where we simply communicate and understand each other for a few minutes. We just chat. It passes quickly but it’s there and I know it will there more often as he grows, as I grow into being this intense person’s mom.


Weeping in my seat while watching the Broadway musical Fun Home, she’s singing about the first woman she ever had sex with and she’s overwhelmed and she’s feeling in love and embarrassed and shy and scared and excited and she’s bursting with all the feelings and I am carried into the memory of that moment in my own life and the tears are just flowing and flowing. I almost let myself forget that beautiful moment, it drowned in shame,  I have wanted to destroy it. But I remember it all the way to my toes for the first time in three years, I remember how beautiful it was, how it felt  and I reclaim it, it is NOT tainted or ugly, that moment is MINE. And I own it again. The power of live theatre to change our hearts is miraculous.


So, it’s rambling, this post…the way my mind so often is. And I am fine with that. There are about three people who read this blog and this post is for those three people. I love them so much. They know who they are. One of the little things is the freedom to express when love exists, to be truly grateful.


Much healing has taken place in my body and my spirit lately and it’s pieced together by so many little things to create a life.






Fun Home Actress Beth Morgan

Unconditional Love

I have three children. A daughter and two sons.

They are the most important thing I have ever done.

To say I am proud of them, is an understatement.

I cherish them

I adore them.



They also drive me completely insane. They are difficult. Each in their own way.

They are a reflection of my parenting mistakes and my parenting perfections.

They mirror my best traits and my worst traits. Sometimes that’s hard to watch.

Look, there’s my kid, being a dick, the same way I am a dick. There’s my kid losing his/her temper the way I lose mine. There’s my kid doubting themselves, the way I doubt myself.

Dammit. That’s hard.

But also it’s a good lesson. I learn from them. It’s important and hard and good. All those things.

We do the best we can, we parents. We aren’t perfect. We have our faults, many learned from our own imperfect parents.

But I love my kids. A lot. So much.

That’s the most important part. Loving them.

But what does it mean to love your children? Where does the love end and does it ever end?

I think it’s hard, recognizing that our kids aren’t exactly what we imagined them to be.

I wanted a daughter who would wear pretty dresses and love dolls and have tea parties with me and do theatre with me and write stories and play make believe.

Instead I have a shy, athletic daughter who refused dresses by 18 months, thought dolls were scary, and doesn’t want anything to do with theatre.

But she’s mine. She’s my girl. She isn’t what I imagined her to be.

But she’s wonderful. I cannot imagine my life without her.  It would devastate me.

I know two people who have “disowned” their children.

1. refuse to acknowledge or maintain any connection with.
It’s very difficult for me to fathom this. I have three imperfect children. My oldest is 16. Perhaps there are things my children could do someday that would cause me to withdraw. It’s hard to imagine. I think I would love them through anything. Maybe if they became heroine addicts who repeatedly stole from me or were violent. Maybe if they become prostitutes or strippers?  I don’t know. Again, I can’t imagine. Yeah, I would be sad if those things happen but I think I would still be present.

I pride myself on being a non-judgmental person. But this I judge, this disowning of children. And I ask myself what is our obligation to these people we bring into the world? Are we obligated to love our children unconditionally? And what does it mean to love unconditionally?

One of the people I know who has turned away from his children did so because they hurt his feelings. Deeply. He had divorced their mom when they were young and moved to another state and remarried. His children struggled and their mom was angry and blamed him for the divorce, for her struggles, for destroying her life. He attempted to maintain his relationship with his sons. But she made it difficult and he didn’t fight hard. I know he didn’t. I was there. He had married my mom.

I love this man. He raised me. When I was teenager. And I was a very difficult teenager. I love him still.
When he and my mother divorced, he also maintained a relationship with me in a somewhat half-hearted way. He didn’t have to. We aren’t related by blood. But I didn’t let him go. That’s me. I hold onto people, I don’t let go of things that matter to me. Over the years, his relationship with his sons became increasingly strained. There was a visit gone wrong. A fight. Changed flights, nasty words.
And they have never spoken since. When grandparents passed away, there were a few stiff conversations. But no real attempt has been made to repair the relationship. He says he is done. They have hurt him too much. They say they are done. He was a bad father.
Done. Done with his children. He has three grandchildren he will never know. He has two successful, kind, interesting, fabulous grown sons with beautiful wives that he has no contact with.

I absolutely cannot understand it.

At all.

I know another person who was “disowned” by her family when she told them she was gay.
They are a religious family and believe that her “choice” to be gay is a sin. They will not condone her behavior.
Her gayness, in their eyes, is just another example of her dramatic, attention seeking behavior.
I am basically nonjudgmental. I do understand how they feel to a certain extent. I understand, given who they are, how they were raised, their deeply set values, how difficult it is to accept something so foreign as gayness. I have family who have really struggled with my sexuality. I empathize with that difficultly. My kids, particularly my daughter, have really struggled…still struggle.  I believe they will get better at dealing with it when they grow up. Until then, I keep it…my sexuality at a distance. But they are kids. Not grown ups. And they aren’t my parents.
I could go on a tirade about choosing to be gay and why anyone would choose to be rejected and hated and discriminated against.
Or whether Jesus actually had anything to say about gayness. Which he didn’t. Not one word.
I want to say, instead…
what the hell people?
What the hell?
Parenting is about unconditional love.
Isn’t it? About that?
Am I wrong here? Are my kids too young for me to understand how a parent could simply walk away from their child?
I believe in the above quote.
I don’t think parenting is easy. I think it’s the hardest job I have ever done.
And post divorce, post “gay” announcement, I can understand the depth of pain your children’s anger can cause you.
But walking away, giving up, rejecting your kids.
That is something I simply cannot understand.
I think you don’t get to do that.
I think when we have a child we are given a gift.
I think parenting requires unconditional love. Even when it hurts. Even when we disagree with our children.
We can say, “I disagree”.
But we don’t get to say, “goodbye”.
I watch this woman feel the pain of her parents rejection. I watch her think about the coming holidays, knowing she won’t be welcome with her family. Her favorite holiday is Christmas. At least it used to be.
She’s not perfect. She’s a fireball. A powerhouse. Complex.
I bet she wasn’t easy to parent. She will be the first to say so. She wasn’t like her siblings. She didn’t quite fit into her traditional, fundamentalist Christian family. And hiding her sexuality only made her life more difficult, it made her more difficult.
But she’s theirs. Their beautiful gift from God.
And I think it’s their job to love and accept her even if they don’t understand.
I think it’s a requirement for being a parent.
Am I wrong here?

Coming out…again…and again…and again…


Admitting I was gay, or likely gay, or mostly gay…that was hard. For some I dropped the gay bomb in one swoop.

For others, I just let them find out naturally, on Facebook.

Or by introducing them to my “girlfriend”. That usually does it.

I see it register on their faces.

Did she say girlfriend?

Yes, she said girlfriend.

Then they process.

Then they realize.

Oh, shit. Ok.


I am fine with it. It’s been two years. I have adjusted to the realization on people’s faces.

But I started a new job and i am not sure how to come out again.

There is a part of me that doesn’t want to. The whole coming out…again.

I just don’t feel like doing it.

Not because I am embarrassed or uncomfortable with my sexuality.

I’m answering questions vaguely…

The person I am dating.

I’m dating someone who…

I am headed to Corpus this weekend. I am in a long distance relationship.

Vague, non gender identifying terms.

It’s annoying that I am doing this. I’m annoyed with myself that I am avoiding it.

It probably doesn’t help that there is clearly a gay couple in the office who are “roommates”, like it’s 1955 again. Those ladies aren’t roommates, everyone knows it, but it’s an old school culture.

I guess I could just toss it out there and let the knowledge spread around the office. It’s likely that will happen eventually.

I guess being gay is just that way. You just have to deal with that.

And deal with it again.

And again and again.

Just another thing that never occurred to me when I was wearing my “totally heterosexual mask”.

The first time I came out it was hard. To say the words.

OMG it was hard.

“I am gay.”

But sometimes, saying them again, to a new group…it feels intrusive and annoying.

Like, why does this have to be weird? Why can’t I just be gay without it becoming a thing?

Because it is. A thing. For other people. A source of gossip.

It will blow over.

My new co-workers will adjust to the news. The super conservative freaked out ones will struggle.

The ones who don’t give a shit will be my friends.

And it will be fine.

But I’m stalling.

I am.

Repressing Anger

I was walking into a restaurant Friday when I noticed a woman I know in front of me. We aren’t really friends, but had always been friendly. She is close friends with someone I dated, and recently I realized she had “Blocked” me on Facebook.

I enjoy Facebook for it’s good points. I love that I can keep in touch with all the people I have known over the years. I can also use it as a means for inviting people to events, and activities I think might be fun or am involved in. But I also see people use it as a means for being cruel. That’s how cruel people use it. Whiners use it to whine but that’s another blog post.

Anyway, so this woman blocked me on Facebook. I have never blocked anyone but I have been blocked a lot recently. It’s not entirely clear to me why. Perhaps the person I am dating, who used to date another person I dated, the one she is friends with…who the hell knows. Cause we are all in the 7th grade again. I wasn’t really aware of what blocking meant until I came across a conversation and noticed a response to something I couldn’t see. Wait, what are they responding to, I wondered? So I asked around. It turns out I had been blocked. All of their posts were invisible to me.

I was blocked cause I am a stalker? A jerk? A gossiper? A liar?

Um…no. I am none of those things.

I was blocked because weird controlling freaky people find some sort of fun satisfaction out of blocking people. I don’t know. The whole thing is bizarre to me. Whatever. I blew it off…laughed about it. Moved on.

Then she was standing in front of me, I ducked back…avoided her. And then I felt it.


It shocked me. I didn’t know I was angry.

Wow, I am angry at her.

I am angry at the people in the world who are cruel for no reason. Who give blind allegiance to cruelty. The Hitlers are bad enough but the people who follow Hitler types are even worse, in my opinion. (Remember this point, I am gonna bring it up again.)

I have done nothing to inspire this cruelty. It is ridiculous.

I went to rehearsal last Friday and our director asked us to find conflict in every line. To attack. We ran the play that way.

It was exhausting. Being that angry for so long. I found myself feeling isolated. And alone. Anger keeps you from connecting to anyone. And human beings need to connect. A refusal to connect, in my opinion, is the source of cruelty. An inability to connect is what creates cruelty in people. It’s ugly.

I have had a life that could have made me cruel.

It didn’t. I am not sure why it does for some people and not for others.

Everyday, I make a choice to be kind no matter what. I am and will continue to be, kind to Facebook blockers and the type that represents.

People who choose cruelty, particularly when it is undeserved, make me super angry.

So this woman, Facebook blocking lady I’m gonna call her.

I am mad at her.

So what do I do with that anger? Where do I put it?

Should I call her up and say, “what the hell, jerkface, why you gotta be a jerkface like that?”

Yeah…no. The thought of that makes me a giggle a little.

I won’t be cruel in return. Cause that ain’t me. I won’t be that. I can’t.

But I also am unsure of what to do with this unresolved anger. I cannot confront it head on…so I must deal with it somehow.

Or repress it.

Nope. That’s not good.

My repressed anger killed my marriage. It caused me to drink too much, to be unhappy. And I want a happy life.

I’ve been thinking a lot about this…repressed anger…cruelty…blind allegiance to cruelty.

I brought it up on my run recently and one of my running partners (who is also a therapist by profession) said to me,

“It’s probably yourself you are angry with. You dated her. You loved her. You believed the narrative she was telling too. So watching someone else do it is probably bringing up your own anger at yourself. Let go of the anger you have at yourself and you will be free.”

God, I hate running with a therapist sometimes.


But seriously, she’s right. I didn’t block anyone. I wasn’t cruel to anyone. But I believed her. I believed her when she said bad things about people she had dated. I bought the narrative she sold. And that is cruelty. In it’s own way. Sitting back and doing nothing, saying nothing…that’s cruelty too.

And I am angry at myself. For my stupidity. For my blind allegiance. For my desire to earn her love that caused me to give up who I am in order to get it.

It is isn’t Facebook blocking lady I am angry with.

It’s me. It’s me I am angry with.

I can choose to focus on self forgiveness and the lessons I have gained through the experience.

Or I can just stay angry.

When framed that way, the decision to forgive is easy.




Welcome to Corpus Christi

I went to Corpus Christi with my girlfriend last weekend. Just a quick overnight trip. The plan was to hang out with some friends, sleep, have breakfast and head home. I was excited.

We went to a dive bar called Cheers. Not like the TV show, at all. But a friendly, laid back place where everyone was welcome.

Or so it would seem.

Let me preface this by saying two things:

1) I am an affectionate person. Touch is my love language. I love touching the person I love. I literally cannot stop myself. I just really love touch. I am tactile. I like to touch and be touched. I also suffer from Basorexia…the overwhelming desire to kiss.


2) I have spent most of my life living as a heterosexual. The lesbians I know tell me that I am bit unusual in my willingness to show affection for my lover in public. They tell me that it’s new for them. They tell me they are careful in public because people can be offended by two women showing affection for each other. I think this is bullshit and I have often said I won’t live by those silly rules. I have also been told that it’s common for women who come out later in life to struggle with accepting the “new rules” of public affection. If you suddenly join a “fringe” group, it can be difficult to accept the rules. The rules are dumb, why should I accept them?

So we went out to Cheers.

We sang. We were silly. Talking. Laughing.
At some point I noticed my lady and I were getting a lot of attention. She pointed it out, that it was making her uncomfortable. I ignored it.

But as the night wore on, I found myself getting uncomfortable too. We were getting a lot of attention. And not the good kind, not the kind that says,

“Oh look, two people in love, that’s so sweet.”

But the other kind. The kind of surprised looks, double takes, negative glances.

What? We are in a dive bar in Corpus. Who cares? This is a place filled with tattoos and oddballs. The gays must be welcomed here, right?

And then this:

My lady and I were dancing. Two men approach and ask to join us.

Who does that? Who approaches a couple and asks to join them? Are we in a swingers club?

We say no thank you.

They push harder.

We say no thank you, three more times. It was like they just couldn’t understand it.

“Guys, we are together, we are a couple, monogamous. In other words, fuck off.”

I couldn’t figure out what was happening.

And then this:

“Did you two just kiss? Like kiss, kiss?” -says highly intoxicated barely dressed girl

“Yes?” – I respond

“OMG, that’s so hot. I think that’s so hot.”

Wait, what?

And then I wondered…why is this happening right now?

What is it about this moment, this couple that’s drawing this level of attention. This isn’t my first girlfriend. I have never had this reaction before to showing affection in public.

I asked the rest of the group what was happening.

“It’s because you are both hot.”

But I have dated attractive women before.

“It’s because you are both hot and you don’t look gay.”

Oh, we don’t look gay. What does gay look like?

Short haired butch women?

Feminine petite men?

Gay comes in all shapes and sizes. It’s an equal opportunity thing, gay.

And then I knew I wanted to get the hell out of there and go to a place where we weren’t on display, where our kissing didn’t appear to be an invitation to join; as though our love were simply a porno the viewer was getting the pleasure of seeing live.


As we stood up to leave, I kissed my beautiful, amazing, perfectly wonderful girlfriend on the lips one last time. And as I did so a man brushed past us and said loudly.

“Holy shit, lesbians. I am so glad I came downtown so I could see all the weirdos.”

I am a weirdo. Like I am an actual weirdo.


For the first time since I came out two years ago, I understood why my lesbian friends shy away from public affection. It’s not just that it can be dangerous. With actual hate crimes happening, still happening in our world. It can be taken away from you and turned into something weird, or ugly, or pornographic.

And I am not ok with that.

I don’t want to be anyone’s entertainment.

I imagine a world where no one gives a shit who you love. Men with men, women and men, women and women…who cares? I want to live in a world where we are judged by our character and not by our sexual orientation…the tiniest piece of who we are. Yeah, I am getting all Martin Luther King Jr.

So we got the hell out of there and headed to the one place where everyone is welcome in Corpus Christi:



PS: This blog post could have been titled: Welcome to  Anywhere in the United States. It just happened to be in Corpus. Which is a great town. I am not dissing Corpus. Just humans, I am dissing some of the humans in the world. Stop being jerks, humans.

No, but for real.

Renee is gay.

It was written in my yearbook. 9th grade? 10th Grade? I don’t remember. But I remember the words. I remember how they stung. An insult. Someone I had presented my yearbook to for signing had taken the time to scrawl those words in my yearbook. I can picture them, written sideways, in the spine. I wonder who did it? I spent a lot of time trying to figure that out when it happened. Who would do such a thing? Stupid Bitches! Ha.

I didn’t think anything about being gay until another girl made a pass at me my senior year.  I will call her Christina. And we had “sex”. I guess you could call it that. We were sort of girlfriends for a while. I have to be honest, it’s a little vague in my memory now. I remember sexual activity. I remember trying to be her girlfriend. I hung out in a wild crowd back then so dating a chick was kind of cool. I didn’t think a lot about it.

Then I met, um…Jessica…yes, we will call her that. She had long brown hair and she was a real lesbian. I had a serious boyfriend at the time, someone I had dated off and on for years and was currently “shacking up with” according to my grandma. I was about 19. Jessica and I hung out for hours and hours and my boyfriend was insanely jealous but I considered us just friends. Then one night, I stayed at her house too late and ended up on her couch, making out for what felt like two days and was probably two hours. It was truly one of the most magical experiences of my then…very short…life. There were moments in the drama that ensued from that experience where I questioned my sexuality. But I didn’t linger on it. I decided I was bisexual and let it go. I dabbled in the “ladies” over the next few years but nothing serious and I mostly dated men. I met my husband when I was 22 and decided he was perfect, he had every quality I had ever imagined in a mate and I set my mind toward marrying him almost immediately. And I did, four years later, at age 26. By 27, I had my first child and my second at 29. I didn’t think too much about my continued attraction to some women. I noticed it but just decided it was simply bisexuality.

We moved across the country. I made new friends. I had another child. I drank a lot. There were some kisses, drunken kisses, with girlfriends over the years. I continued to claim bisexuality and wonder why I couldn’t connect sexually with my spouse the way I wanted to. I lived my life and always felt a sense of something not being quite right. I couldn’t feel happiness. There was always something missing and I filled that emptiness with alcohol and a steady stream of pot.

My husband and I argued over my continued experimenting with making out sessions with my drunk girlfriends. I told him he should loosen up. The other husband’s thought it was hot. Why couldn’t he? I tried to stop myself from doing it but a few glasses of wine and a willing participant and I would find myself smooching it up again. It never went further than that. The women weren’t gay, they were just being silly after a few drinks. All in good fun, right?

And then I got sober. That’s another story. Another blog. I committed to sobriety for a year. I didn’t know if I was truly an alcoholic but I knew I was messing up my kids with my partying ways, so I quit.

Boy reality is shocking when you first start living in it. I hadn’t been a daily drinker but near the end I was drinking a LOT. And smoking copious amounts of pot. When I quit I holed myself up in my house, I threw myself into projects, began writing about sobriety. I tried to stay busy and figure out what was really going on with me. It was during this time that I became friends with a lesbian. She was comfortable in her life, outgoing, friendly, likeable and 100% gay. I didn’t spend five minutes with her and instantly know I was gay too. It was more of an unfolding. I watched her. I studied her. I wondered what it would be like to be gay.  But I didn’t acknowledge being gay to her. I didn’t ask her if she thought I was gay. It didn’t cross my mind.

Until last summer…over a year ago. I was running with my non-gay friend and she made a casual comment in response to my announcing that I felt attracted to our mutual friend, the gay one. She said,

“Are you sure you aren’t gay?”

I responded with a scoff..

“I’m not gay. I am bisexual. You know that. But I feel lots of things toward her…lots of things.”

And then I blew it off. And off and off and off and off.

Sometime in August I settled on it. I was gay. I didn’t tell anyone. I just said it in my head.

“I think I might be gay. I think that might be my problem.”

And then when I knew it, I began to really know it. As in the knowledge took over ginormous pieces of my brain. I could think of nothing else.


Suddenly I found myself incapable of being sexual with my husband. He became a stranger to me. I became increasingly withdrawn and made an appointment with a therapist. I told her I wanted to tell my husband I was gay.

She tried to slow me down but it became a huge mountain of information that I could no longer contain and pretending became very difficult. I can remember the moment I decided to tell him. He was in the kitchen, being silly, making jokes with one of the kids. I looked at him and I thought, “holy shit…I don’t love him the way I should and I never will. He is being cheated by this lie. I have to tell him.”

And so I did.

And the shit hit the fan.

I moved out.

I started to divorce a man I had rarely ever fought with…who I had generally had a pretty decent relationship with. You know we had our issues, mostly, in my opinion because I was pretending to be something I wasn’t. And he was pretending nothing weird was going on.

I told my kids.

And the shit hit the fan. I mean it really hit the fan.

So now I am divorced, trying to heal my kids, trying to learn independence.  Trying to learn how to be gay this late in life.

Well I have always been gay, for the record, but now I am ready to actually be it.

A single, 42 year old lesbian with three kids.

So that’s where I am right now.