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I don’t want to go back to church.

I know I’ve said in the past that I did.  Or at least, that I wanted to want to.  But I don’t, not really.

My younger self would not have understood my present self in the slightest.  In fact, I think it is a remnant of my younger self that is the problem here.  You who know me or who have read my blog for any amount of time know that I was raised as a conservative Christian, that I went to Bible College and Seminary.  That I made faith my life until the last few years.  I never expected to not have faith be a full-time priority.  I mean, I used to teach Sunday School and a adult’s class for new believers.  I was basically the poster child for evangelical Christianity.

Except that I never quite fit in.  My feminist self was certainly not part of the deal.  Nor was my lesbian self (which, admittedly, did not come out until much after my abandonment of church).  I was not quiet or timid or submissive enough.  I never felt incomplete by myself (let alone without a man, ha).  For a time, I wanted and tried, desperately, to fit into the mold that was given to me based on the fact I was born with a vagina.  But it’s been a long time since I’ve tried to fit that mold.

I resented being told I had to live a certain way based on gender.  And I hated that I wasn’t supposed to question things.  I hated that I wasn’t allowed to hate certain parts of the Bible, that I was supposed to just accept them as a good thing, even though there is no way they could be good.  Genocide?  Bigotry?  Misogyny? Patriarchal bullshit?  And so much more.  Theological points were sticky for me at times, too.  Early on in my academic career, I decided that I’d align myself more closely with neo-orthodoxy.  But even that isn’t where I am today.

I don’t miss going to church.  I miss the community, having easy access to friends.  I’m trying to find that in the queer community, and I think I’ll get there eventually.  But I don’t think I’m going to go back to church to find it.

I’m still not saying I don’t have some sort of faith.  I do.  It just looks so very different than I ever expected that I don’t know how to define it, or if it even needs to be defined.  Maybe it is okay that I don’t know where I am in regard to faith or where I’m going.

My life is not at all what I thought it would be.  But you know what?  It’s so much better than I could have ever dreamed.

This week has gone by swimmingly.  Ignoring certain aspects of it, that is.  But why focus on unpleasant parts when you can just ride the wave of fun?  I think my sayings are getting mixed up.  Not enough sleep, clearly.

I went to karaoke this week.  And dancing.  And tonight I’m going to a drag king show.  Please feel free to envy my life.

I admit I spent a fair amount of time today on the couch.  I took a nap during a movie–it’s really the only way I can convince my mind that it’s okay to take a nap.  Otherwise I lay down and immediately am overwhelmed by all the thoughts ever of what I ought to be doing instead.

Mmm. That’s all, I think.  I have a lot of other things going through my mind, but none of them are ready to commit to written word yet.

 

A new friend posted this on her social media recently:

This morning when you rolled over
out of bed & left my embrace,
I did not fear for your safety.

Under covers of night I whispered
spells between your shoulder blades,
casting a shield over your body
with the imprints of my lips.

But you are not invincible–

you must come home before
the sun crashes into the earth
& shatters into a billion stars.

(You belong in my arms.)

~Amanda Torroni

I can’t express the exact feeling this gives me–I just don’t know how.  Words that are full… I want to devour them.  There are things I feel that I just want to envelope within my body; this poem is one of those things.  I want to ingest it, to make it part of me, to give it away, to keep it for myself.  I want it to be true, and I want it to be mine.  It’s like an ache, but in a good way.

It expresses something I’ve felt for years, but didn’t know how to express or that it even needed this kind of expression.  I knew it was there, flitting on the sidelines of my mind, but I hadn’t given it space to breath.

But fuck.

So good.

I was talking with a friend today about all the dates I’ve been going on, plus all the ones I want to line up.  And she made a comment about me settling down…  To which I expressed a distinct lack of desire.  (I should preface this with the fact that the women I fall for have all been emotionally unavailable so far, and why settle for a woman you haven’t fallen for?)

I feel like a squirrel with ADD.  I get excited about a woman, but then another ones shows up, and I get excited about her.  And most of the time, the first one is forgotten.  And so on.

It’s not that I don’t want a relationship.  I do.  I really do.  But I don’t want to jump into one before I’m sure of it.  And if I’m not excited about someone, I really don’t want to jump into a relationship with them.  And if they can’t hold my attention for longer than a date, then, obviously that’s not going to work.

And dating women and flirting with them and meeting them and checking them out… it’s still the best fucking thing ever.  I don’t want to turn into a stereotypical douchy guy, but I also don’t feel the need to start uhauling anytime soon.

I really just want to enjoy this time of my life.

I met my soulmate tonight.  She is a dyke who blues dances.  And she is beautiful.  She had the best hair.  And a fantastic sense of style.  And she can lead and follow.  (I am learning lead.)  And we danced many times.  And we switched, which might be the best thing ever.  And I am going to marry her and bear her babies.  (She is going to marry me and bear my babies?)  I know her first name only and can’t find her on facebook.  But I won’t let that stop me.

You guys.  Tonight was fucking amazing.  Learning lead might be one of the best things I’m doing.  I danced with so many ladies tonight!  It was glorious!  Why dance with a man if you can dance with a woman?  (Granted, I am equal opportunity–I’m there to dance regardless of gender.)  I even had a guy come up to me, say that he saw me leading, and asked if I wanted to dance switch.  Yes!  Please!  YES!

The feels!

The blissed out feels!

More, please.

I think I’m getting better at this flirting thing.  Or maybe I just think I am.  Just messaged a woman I’ve been talking with online–she asked if there was anything I was looking forward to this week, and had asked if I wanted to meet.  (So, okay, this is not as bold as it could have been. But still playful, right?!)  So I said something to the effect of “I’m hoping to meet this cute woman I’ve been chatting with on here. Speaking of which, I’d love to meet.”  I was going to ask her to meet, but she beat me to it.  By one message.

I’ve been watching more queer shows/movies and reading more queer literature.  It makes my heart so fucking happy.  Last night I watched Tomboy, and tonight I watched Itty Bitty Titty Committee (which really isn’t anything it sounds like from the name).  I’m currently reading The Essential Dykes to Watch Out For (comics), and have Rubyfruit Jungle on standby.  I’m starting to research the Riot Grrrl bands I missed out on in the 90’s.  God, it’s all so good.

Rainy days, post blues dancing, always make me feel like writing.  And my writing comes out as poems.  The ideas flying through my mind, needing release, needing form and senses and expression.

I’m laying on my floor, listening to Norah Jones, going through my file of poetry.  Creating, refining, releasing.  I’ve purged about half of what I had saved from years ago.  I still smile when I read one of the first poems I ever wrote that wasn’t an assignment.

I found an unfinished poem that I started almost three years ago–it was the beginning of the poem that I needed to write today, that I needed to feel today.

My poems might only ever be good enough for me.  But that is enough.

I went blues dancing last night.  It wasn’t as good as the alternative venue I used to go to in Portland, but you really can’t beat Portland Blues.  Seriously.  I’ve included a little video below of a Jack & Jill competition so you can see what I’m talking about.

Here’s something fun from last night.  Maybe a few little fun somethings.  Let’s see, the only dances I didn’t dance were from choosing to sit out (when I was chatting with the host).  Also, a first!  A woman who I had been making eye contact with frequently over the course of the evening had to attempt three times to ask me to dance because I kept getting asked before she could get to me.  What a nice ego boost!  And now I feel all endorphin happy from all the beautiful physical touch and delightful dancing.

And I only had to dance with two awkward men total.  Phew.  I admit I try to avoid the ones that I suspect will be… weird? creepy? awful?  But my policy by and large is to say yes to anyone who asks, unless I have a really good reason to say no.  And I got to dance with way more women than usual–I love that blues is a very gender bending dance.  Not like swing, which is rare to have switches.

I’m a happy lady this morning.