It’s a pretty good indication to me that it’s time to write when I wake up around dark thirty and I roll over on my side, then on my back, then my other side and then on to my stomach. That’s just about the time that I decide to give up on sleep because all that tossing and turning has stirred up ideas of things to write about and at that point my brain won’t settle. So, regardless of the ridiculousness of the hour, I roll over one more time and reach for my blogging implement.
The idea that won’t settle this morning is based on a memory I had yesterday and I can’t remember now what triggered this memory, but I was reflecting back on a time when I was trying to come to terms with my confusing feelings about my sexual preferences. It’s interesting to me the events that occurred that opened me up to accepting myself.
I was 22 years old and married to my second husband. I was trying like hell to be straight. Maybe one more husband would straighten me right out. Yeah right, well, it never was that conscious of a decision. It was more like,…honestly, I don’t really know what it was like. I had no idea who I was or what I wanted. When I was presented with the option to marry I just said yes, not thinking about if I really wanted to marry this man or not. I cried at this wedding the same way I did at my first. Somewhere inside me I knew it wasn’t right.
I was very unhappy in that relationship. Things were not going well. He was an alcoholic and his employment was spotty. He was cheating on me. He was miserable and so was I. I spent as many hours as possible with our son away from the house. We had totally different schedules as he worked the night shift and slept all day. It was a volatile situation.
I was desperate for a way out. I felt powerless. His communication style was aggressive, manipulative and belittling. I remember feeling about two feet tall. I resented the FUCK OUT OF HIM and myself. I used to be so frustrated and upset at the whole situation that I would look at myself in the mirror give myself a hateful angry growl as I clenched my fists and shook with rage. To be completely honest, the only thing keeping me alive at that time in my life was my sweet little baby boy. I actually thought, if I kill myself, who would that leave to raise my son? I was going to have to figure something out.
Then something happened that would change my life forever. I was approached to participate in a group activity that could provide an opportunity for me to explore my attraction to women. If you can imagine this, please consider that it literally took me about fifteen minutes just to write that last sentence. No. I’m not kidding. Nervous much? Yes!!!
It’s ok, I can be nervous and still proceed. There is a strong and confident part of me that feels it is important to share this and I will tap into that confidence to continue writing.
I said yes to participating in that group activity and the arrangements were made. As I nervously waited for the time to arrive, I had a total change of heart. No, no, no, I don’t want to do this and I decided I would ignore the knock on the door. I would just pretend that I was sleeping and I didn’t hear the knock. I somehow convinced myself that was going to work. Yep! I’ll just sleep right through it.
Knock! Knock! Knock! Wrong! I shot straight up out of bed like a rocket. My heart was racing and there was no way in hell I could ignore it. Little did I know that the moment I opened the door to this experience, that I would be opening the door to the path that would lead me to myself.
I had my first sexual experience with a woman and it was so many things. Confusing, exciting, liberating and terrifying. I loved the way it made me feel like, hey this is who I am. I hated the way it made me feel like, oh my god what the hell is wrong with me.
I decided there was something wrong with me. Being attracted to women for a woman was wrong and I had no evidence to show that it could be anything else, but wrong. In an effort to try and help me process my feelings I joined a 12 step group called Sexaholics Anonymous (SA).
The definition of sobriety was very strict. One was considered sexually sober only when the sex they were having was with their spouse of the opposite gender. Masturbation was even excluded. It was very oppressive. After months of attendance, I decided that was ridiculous. I am certain this group has helped many people with their lives, but it just wasn’t for me. I looked into another program very similar, but radically different in that each person wrote their own definition of sobriety. Those Sex Addicts Anonymous (SAA) meetings helped me to realize that I wasn’t actually addicted to sex and that the feelings I was having were COMPLETELY normal and natural because I am a lesbian. Whew! What a relief. Big huge sigh of relief. After 23 years of wrestling with the reality that I was different, I finally came to terms with different is not wrong. Different is just different.
Acceptance of myself, as a lesbian, gave me the confidence to divorce that jack ass and move on. It only took me two years of allowing my true self to BE, as a gay person, to allow the love of my life to arrive. 🙂
This morning after I began writing this post I rolled over one more time and cuddled up to Keri. I scratched her back and her head and laid there in complete happiness loving on my baby, because I know beyond any shadow of a doubt that these sweet feelings of love that we share are completely natural. It is my sincere heartfelt wish that I every single person alive can grow up having feelings of certainty that love is love, and there ain’t a damn thing wrong with that.