I forget that I’m sometimes invisible to others.
I’m talking Mindy Kaling Superbowl Commercial invisible, not Harry Potter in an invisibility cloak invisible.
I’m very open about who I am, and, I mean, why wouldn’t I be? I’m proud of what I’ve achieved in my 25 years of life. I have a lot going for me– I love my job as a teacher, I can call myself a published writer, I have a family that loves me, my friends are awesome, and I’m getting ready to marry the love of my life.
The lesbian part of me? Well, it’s just a small part of my otherwise awesome existence!
I don’t “look gay,” whatever that look may be. One of my dearest friends has repeatedly said that I’m the “straightest lesbian she knows.”
I’m girly. I get that. I also don’t flaunt my love life wherever I go, unless I’m with my love. Even then, I’m not huge on PDA. It’s not a I’m-ashamed-to-be-gay thing. It’s a I’m-socially-awkward-and-kind-of-private thing.
I realize this may be contradictory to my role as a blogger, but whatever.
I know that I’ll continuously have to come out in my life– as I plan our wedding and contact new possible vendors, every year when I get new students and they ask about my engagement (and soon to be wedding!) ring, whenever I meet a new colleague at work, whenever I make a new friend in the real world, when I’m introduced as someone’s “lesbian friend,” eventually when I have kids and have to fill out the Back to School forms and meet their teachers at Conferences… Coming out is now a part of my life, despite my having come out as a lesbian years ago.
I get the coming out. I do.
What I don’t get, however, is the stigma that still lingers with being a lesbian, particularly a femme lesbian.
I can pass as straight. My fiancé cannot. (Sorry(?) honey!) I don’t get stares when I go to the bathroom, or a women’s fitting room, and I find it easy to find stylish clothing in my own gender at most stores. (Size wise is another story!)
But when people assume I’m ashamed of being a lesbian…
Oh Hell no.
I am not ashamed of my life experiences.
I am not ashamed of my love of other women.
I am not ashamed of finding love with my soulmate.
I am not ashamed to have my entire immediate and extended family loving and supporting me each and every day.
I am not ashamed of having supportive friends who couldn’t care less what gender I love, as long as my love treats me with the love and respect I deserve.
I am not ashamed of being unashamed and proud of who I am.
So, it blows my freaking mind when people don’t know I’m a lesbian. I’m out. I tell anyone who asks that I’m lesbian. If you’re a new friend, I will have a socially awkward moment where I say something about being a lesbian or my fiancé being a woman. I have pictures of V & I all over my desk at work. You can Google my name and find pages and pages of me listed as an “out lesbian poet,” “the owner of a Gay Bridal Website,” and much, much more.
I’ve had more people double over in shock over the past few weeks that I’m gay than anything else.
Open your eyes, people. I am not invisible. You are just wearing over-tinted sunglasses.