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Things are slowly picking up at work. Perhaps I can stay until I’m qualified to find a job in coding (by qualified, I mean kickass enough).

Speaking of coding, I’m looking forward to doing homework this week, if only because I will have a homework buddy to slog through it with me.  Plus, my teacher gave me the rest of the assignments ahead of time (as requested), so I can attempt to finish the coursework before my best friend’s wedding.

Oh! I was accepted into the certificate program, starting in January.  So that’s a go.

In other news, gay news, not gay news, my gay life news, that is… (Worst sentence ever, and I’m keeping it.)  I am so over conservative, Christian friends who can’t get over the fact that I’m gay and just accept it as a good thing.  Fuck them.  They can just take a walk and leave me out of it.  I’m not interested in being their token gay friend. I’m not interested in them working out their issues about homosexuality with me as their guinea pig.  And it always feels harsh when I communicate this to them (in gentler words, honest), but I have a duty to myself first.  Plus, I can’t kick out my family, and I already have to deal with their struggles about my gayness, so…  Ugh.

Moving on. Today is a busy day.  Actually, this whole month is busy what with homework and the wedding and all.  Not to mention I’m still trying to squeeze in dates where I can.  September will be a better month.

And the girl who gave me her number last week?  She’s involved in a pyramid scheme. Fairly certain she was trying to groom me to join. Strike one, two, and three.

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Last week was pretty much awful.

I’m not going to talk about Orlando because I don’t have the words.  It is a horrible, horrible thing that happened.  I’m, we’re, still reeling.

To top that off, I had a fight with my parents–which made for an extra emotional few days.  But, in actuality, I think that helped.  I’ve been so careful this last year to not bring up being gay around them, to try to be sensitive to the fact that they don’t know what to do with it.  But, I was holding it against them and getting increasingly frustrated.  So now things are a bit more open and while they’re still not happy, I at least feel like I can acknowledge my queerness around them.  It’s a start.

—-

It’s June.  It’s Pride month.  And my city’s Pride is coming up.  I’m planning on bringing my oldest niece to the parade. She wants to come, and I think it’d be good for her to do so.  My brother (her dad) seemingly only had one concern–nudity, to which I assured him that there is virtually none (thanks to the commercialization of Pride, but I’m actually not complaining because I’m not a huge fan of public nudity in general).  Anyway, I think it will be a good experience, and I’m looking forward to the chance to talk to her more.  Last I knew, she was more or less questioning her sexuality, but I’m not sure where she is on that currently.

It’s also almost my birthday.  I’ll be 34 this month–crazy!  Time goes so quickly.  I’m also starting that Python course this week, which means I have to get serious about doing coursework.  What with Pride and my birthday this weekend, I guess I’m going to have to get the first module and assignment completed early, boo.

Well, my Sophie-cat is giving me a death glare, which I interpret to mean “bedtime.”  It may be the summer solstice (and a strawberry moon!), but I’m still a grandma.

I don’t spend too much time talking about things that bum me on on here (at least not lately), mostly because I don’t like to see them written out, but also because lately I can’t remain focused on the sad for long.  There’s too much good to explore and feel.

However, one point of constant hurt is my family.  I don’t like to complain because I feel like I’m pretty lucky in that regard.  They haven’t disowned me or been terrible about me being gay.  Things could be so much worse.  But…

My brother called today.  Granted, he has a lot of shit going on in his own life with his soon to be ex-wife.  That is its own source of sadness and hurt, and plenty of it.  But near the end of the conversation, I made the mistake of asking if the parents had said anything recently about my gayness.

Mom is in denial, as I suspected.  She seems to think that this is a phase, and I’ll go back to dating men at some point; that I’ll realize this was all a mistake and things will be back to normal.  Dad just doesn’t like to think about it, really.  He has a hard time talking about it, using the words to say what I am.  But he also seems to think it’s his fault somehow.  And my brother, the brother I have always adored and looked up to, also isn’t a fan–which I had suspected, but am apparently masochistic enough to ask for clarification.  I didn’t need an update on my sister–I already know that she thinks it’s bad, but, of course, like with all of them, still want me in her life.

The problem is it’s not the same as it was before I came out.  I was never close with them, but this is worse.  And the words they use…  Being gay is compared to mistakes, bad choices, sin, addiction, being a bad person, etc, etc, etc.  (This, oddly, in my defense when my brother allegedly was trying to explain to my dad how he can still have me in his life–there are people you are friends with, but don’t like all their life choices…)

It makes me feel physically ill.

My mom wants me to come over for Easter next week.  I can’t do it.  But I feel guilty about not going.  It’s so fucked up.  Part of my problem is that I do, for some reason, want them to stay in my life.  So then I feel a responsibility to make them see how happy I am now, how good it is, how right it is.  But they’re never going to see that, and it’s only hurting me.  Still, I can’t completely cut them out.  I just can’t.  I just need them in small doses, infrequently…

Fuck.

So far, my dating strategy has been to go out with every woman who asks–because women! I also want to give people a chance, even if I don’t think they’re my type or whatnot.  And obviously, I ask women out, too, especially if I’m actually interested in meeting them.  But I can see how this first strategy may backfire a little.

For example, this weekend, I went for coffee with a woman I knew I wasn’t interested in, but she grew up in Calgary, and I’d gone to undergrad around that area.  So I thought it would be interesting to talk about Canada some.  But there was no chemistry, and I was bored and counting minutes until I could leave without being too rude.

Then she texted me after the date to say she had a good time.  I didn’t know what to say in response, so I didn’t answer for 8 hours, but when I finally did, I felt so guilty that I texted that I’d had a good time and included a smiley face.  (That, according to friends, was the failing point. Lesson: Don’t include cutesy emoticons if you’re not interested.)  Anyway, despite a lack of response on my part (like, ignoring her texts), I still got asked out again.  (Kudos to her for bravery?) Which meant I had to say I’m not interested in going out.

Ugh.  I’m not saying a first date has to set my heart on fire (although that’s nice if it happens), but there has to be a basic spark, right?

You guys… I bought another pair of skinny jeans (same cut as the others, but in black).  What is happening to me?!

And I also found the door to the exercise room, so with any luck I’ll be using it on the regular.

Now, for all the really important stuff.

I totally sent this completely humiliating facebook message to a woman I went to high school with.  I’m fairly certain we weren’t friends (I say it like that because my memory is quite foggy of those awful years), and I have a feeling she probably didn’t know who I am or won’t remember me (she was a cool kid; I was a nerd).  But she was cute then, I just looked her up last night, and she’s super hot now.  Like, oh my god.  So, I may or may not have had a few glasses of wine yesterday and while the effects were mostly gone but lingering, I sent this woman a message basically saying all that.  I don’t even know if she’s gay or single or anything.  Last night it seemed brilliant.  This morning, not quite as much.

Regardless, I love every aspect of being out.  I love being allowed to check out women, to flirt with them.  I love feeling like the world of dating is open and wonderful.  I love that I’m feeling things I didn’t know you could feel.  It’s the things you heard you should have felt when you first went through adolescence, but I never did–I blamed it on being a late bloomer.  And you know, 20 years later, I’m finally catching up.  (ha.ha.)

Of course, my family is still in denial.  Hanging out with them is hard, not because they are being terrible, but because there is an unspoken rule to not bring it up, and right now, my life is largely dominated by my exploration of the queer world.  So I don’t know what to say to them or to tell them.  I don’t want to shove it in their faces, to make them come to terms with it on my terms.  But I do worry about how it will go when I finally bring a girlfriend over for them to meet.  I actually dread that moment. (Not that I will let that worry ruin my fun now!)

I’m allowing myself to be fully comfortable in my own skin.  I’m learning what that looks like for me.  Even clothing choices–I’m slowly seeking out clothes that only make me feel kick-ass, and getting rid of the ones that just don’t.  I’m experimenting with new styles (skinny jeans? boots?) and figuring out if they’re for me.  It’s empowering.

I’m going on dates and enjoying them. (I can hardly get over how wonderful that is.)  I’m meeting new friends.  I’m finding a place to belong.

It’s great.

I’ve finally given up on not shaving my legs and now have beautifully smooth legs again.

It was hard for me to decide to give up on it, because fuck patriarchy.  But in the end, I prefer smooth legs: I am a product of my culture and society, after all.  I am 100% fine with other women not shaving, and I wish I could care less about it so that I would join them long term.  But…  smooth legs!

I also like jumping into things completely, then deciding if I want to stay or not.  I spent an entire summer with unshaved legs.  I feel like I gave it the old college try.  And now that I’m out, and not trying as hard to be undesirable to men, I am more willing to do things like shave my legs because it now has (and perhaps should have always had) nothing to do with men and what they like.  Men are just a moot point.  Which I think is fucking fantastic.

I also took the time to paint my fingernails black yesterday.  I love black fingernails, but rarely do it because painting fingernails is a pain in the ass.  And for all the effort you put forth, it rarely lasts long enough to make it feel worth it.  I also kind of suck at painting my fingernails.  Alas.