Being “Out” Is the Easy Part
May my journey of becoming, evolving, and fully embracing my “colorful” life be an inspiration to others.
As we come to the conclusion of June 2021 and my first time outwardly celebrating and acknowledging pride on all my platforms, I’m taking some space to share why I feel being “out” is the easy part . . . the continual coming out, correcting language and protecting peace is the real work in my world. Oh! Yeah! Can I add the obvious? I am a black woman, that identity comes to the forefront before advocating for any other thing, period!
Here we go . . . .
Coming Out . . . Again & again & again!
So here’s the thing, being out was quite simple for me. Once I conquered coming out AND being comfortable internally, the being out part was simple. Don’t get me wrong, this process took quite some time (like years!) but once I finally felt about 90% comfortable in the varying spaces of my life, being out became simple.
The challenge came with gathering the nerves to suggest others use partner or spouse instead of instantly assuming someone has a husband or wife. I find myself doing this not just for myself but for others who may be suffering in silence and/or not in a position to challenge terminology.
It’s pretty uncomfortable to correct people when they ask about my husband. Also, kinda weird when I witness allies speaking out and it being assumed that because they support that they too are same-gender loving. Honestly, it is just A LOT that ultimately leads to one coming out again and again and again when in reality . . . why does it really matter? Recently when asked what are my hopes for the future as it relates to pride + professionalism and simply put . . “I pray there’s a day when it just doesn’t matter. That’s it.”
Growth . . Embracing It All!
So as a queer, black, southern female in business there are several identify puzzles and if I can be honest, struggles that go on in my world. I am giving myself the permission to continually grow and evolve in this area. I’m learning terminology, I’m finding my “space” in the race and I’m not allowing society or any subgroup of society to force me into a box because contrary to popular belief there is division within advocacy and “support” groups. That’s another article for another time.
Grateful for the opportunities to speak alongside other LGBTQIA+ professionals this month and also be interviewed a few times around how I navigate my “colorful” life. This is a huge step in my own journey and I’m truly grateful. Here’s to more life, more growth, more acceptance and more GRACE!
In the words of the Queen (Latifah that is) — Happy Pride! Mic Drop!