Thursday, November 12, 2009

One month later

"Don't turn back now that we're here
people always say
life is full of choices
no one ever mentions fear
or how the world can seem so vast
on a journey to the past
somewhere down this road
I know someones waiting
years of dreams just cant be wrong
arms will open wide
I'll be safe and wanted
finally home where I belong
well starting now I'm learning fast
on this journey to the past
there was once a time that I must of had them too
I will never be complete until I find you
one step at a time
one hope then another
who knows where this road may go
back to who I was
on to find my future
things my heart still needs to know
yes, let this be a sign
let this road be mine
let it lead me to my past
and bring me home
at last"
from the song "Journey to the Past"
from the movie "Anastasia"

It will have been a month ago as of tomorrow. That thought is a bit scary. It was about a month ago that I officially came out to friends and family on facebook. I know it seems weird that I did it on facebook. But it worked out for me, and things changed quite a bit since then.
Two months ago:
School was getting going, and I was beggining to consider how to come out to everybody that didn't know (which was most of everybody that knows me.). I can clearly remember sitting in the back of the library roughly where I sit now writing this blog post, looking at my facebook page, and thinking about coming out. I nearly did it in that first month, but I didn't know what words to use, who to tell first, how they would react when they found out, so it didn't happen in September, but it nearly happened several times.
One Month ago:
Sitting back in the library again near where I am sitting now, I was staring at my facebook page on several different ocasions, with a blank message open ready to do it, but unsure of what words to use. Several times I thought about doing it, but I didn't do it. I didn't write the words. October 13 rolled around, and throughout the day I just sat there at a computer working on various things for classes and projects I had going at the time. At one point I opened up a blank message again, and began typing, but it didnt feel quite right; as if I wasn't supposed to come out that way. At 2:53 I deleted that message, and did a status update saying "Why are some things so difficult?". Half an hour later, a good friend of mine left me a comment saying "So that you learn how to overcome adversity!". Twenty minutes pass, and I read my friends comment on that status update. That's when I suddenly typed the following into the status update bar: "I Guess things are difficult so we overcome adversity. I guess it's time for me to say it. Maybe it'll get eaisier the more I do this. I'm gay."; and hit the submit button. With that I broke down momentarily before realizing that I had to leave for class, that I had finally come out, and felt unsure of how people were going to react. So I logged off, and went to class. After class I got back to the library, and logged into facebook to see if anyone had commented on that status update or sent me a message. I ended up with four comments on the status and two messages about the status update. It was 7:13pm, and I finally knew how people were reacting to my coming out. Nobody reacted poorly. Everybody was so positive and encouraging. By Sunday evening had such a good feeling about finally being out. That night I was working in the church nursery for a class that was going on, and for whatever reason the bell choir director, who I have now known for over a year, was at church for something or other. She stopped by the nursery that night, and grabbed my attention. Thankfully there were two other people working, so it wasn't a big deal that I left for a couple of minutes to talk to the bell director. As soon as I got out into the lobby area where Dianne was standing waiting for me, she said something to me (I can't believe that I don't remember what she said. somedays I want to beat myself over the head for not remembering or recording what she said to me.), and gave me a great big hug. I just remember how positive she was about my coming out, and how supportive she was. I can remember just about crying in that moment when she hugged me because I had had no idea how she would react, and for the first time in my life I felt like I could completley be myself and not have to worry about being judge for it.
It's amazing how far I've come in a month. A week or so ago I was out at lunch with the bell choir I play with at church to celebrate one of the bell choirs members 50th anniversary. At that point, someone came over to me and asked a couple questions about how I was doing and how my family was holding up after my having come out. I answered her questions, and for one of the first times in my life I knew just how much had changed for me. I felt so free, so much more like who I know I am, and didn't feel like I was going to be judged anymore. Cut to last night at the bell choir rehearsal. On Sunday we are doing all of the non-hymn music for one of the services because we have had a bell choir for ten years now. So this week we had rehearsals on Monday and last night. We have another one on Saturday morning from nine until noon, and will be at church at 7:30 am on Sunday morning to warm up for the 8:45 service. Back to last nights rehearsal. There were times when I looked at the bell director, and our eyes connected, and it just felt like there's a connection there that wasn't there before I came out. Later on in the rehearsal we had a break. So one of my friends and I were sitting there together in two different pews. I was behind and to my friends left. I can't remember what we were talking about even. But we were having a conversation that I can see myself having had a year ago. This friend I was talking to was the same one with some questions for me a week or two ago at that lunch I mentioned. It's amazing how quickly things changed for me.

1 comment:

Pat said...

Hi Erin,

I have been working on my blog and a page came up telling me who else in Midland had one and I saw your pic and said "Hey, I know her!"

I read a little of yours and I wanted to tell you that you ROCK! I remember the day my sister came out to me and I was just 13 then (yeah, a long time ago). From that day forward, I knew that my life was about including everyone, no matter what. I lost my sister a few years ago and I miss her terribly, but I know that she was so much more at ease having told me.

I'm proud of you girl, keep doing what you're doing.

Pat Koehler or "Mrs. Koehler" :o)