Summer in New York City | August ’17

First of all, I am very well aware of the fact that I haven’t written anything of value on here in literally months. Ya know, just figured I’d acknowledge my complete lack of commitment and say that I HAVE THINGS TO WRITE ABOUT AND I WILL SHARE THEM SOON.

In the meantime, check out August’s vlog ft. my friends with video footage to prove that we do in fact watch sports occasionally.

Pride Month: Jocelyn

I’ve thought for a while about how to appropriately introduce this piece and I’m still at a loss for words, but I mean that in the best way. 

Today’s words are written by my good friend, Jocelyn. I’ve been lucky enough to have known her for a few years now, but I feel like it’s safe to say we’ve grown much closer recently. 

When I say I’m at a loss for words, I mean that I was blown away by how vulnerable, genuine, and honest Jocelyn was willing to be in this piece. These words speak volumes about the kind of person she has become, and it makes me so happy to see how she’ll continue to grow in the future.

I think that, regardless of your sexuality, or where you may be in the coming out process, her opinions and experiences will resonate with you. Not to completely overuse the word “pride” but, I just couldn’t be more proud to know Jocelyn after reading this.

Without further ado, here is a look inside the mind and feelings of Joce: 

Pride To Me:

The word pride can have many different meanings and definitions. For example, The word pride is defined in the dictionary as follows:

Definition of Pride:

  1. the quality or state of being proud: such as
    a:  inordinate self-esteem:  conceit
    b:  a reasonable or justifiable self-respect
    c:  delight or elation arising from some act, possession, or relationship parental pride
  2. proud or disdainful behavior or treatment:  disdain
  3. a:  ostentatious display
  4. b:  highest pitch:  prime
  5. a source of pride:  the best in a group or class
  6. a company of lions
  7. a showy or impressive group a pride of dancers

Although my definition of pride may be a little different from others, I wanted to at least try and articulate the meaning in my own words. In light of this month, I’m going to swallow my pride (See what I did there?) and write a little post about what this all means to me:

I’ve always been, in some way, a closed book, and that’s because of a lot of reasons. I’m someone who has tried to steer away from attention and anything that involves the word pride all together. I’ve never been one to call myself a prideful person because I have spent a great deal of my life putting energy into covering up something that plays such a prominent role in who I am as a person. The world is scary, life is hard, and for so long I was not someone who was about to tell my world something so personal about myself…until recently…. and for that, I am proud.

Like many, I am terrified of being vulnerable and did not want anyone to think of me differently, or any less, after I told them about this part of me that was hidden for so long. When society tells you to be a certain way, it is tough to go against it. For so long, I was actually very stubborn and didn’t think it was anyone’s business to know about my personal life, or who I dated, etc. Granted, it isn’t anyone’s business anyway, but when you date someone of the same sex, it seems to suddenly turn into the topic of all conversation. I slowly, but surely, began to realize that this was not necessarily the case, and there is no shame in loving who you love, and being who you are. I can thank my supportive and amazing group of friends for always being there, and having my back throughout these times in my life.

Pride, to me, is not necessarily carrying a flag in a parade or shouting to everyone in the streets. (For the record, I’m not putting the gay pride parade down in any way because I will most likely be there – It’s just not what I want to make this all about.) To me, it’s not about being proud to be gay, or bi, or whatever your heart desires. For me, it is simply being proud of myself for taking those tiny steps to have the courage to come out to myself, and my friends and say, hey I like women as well. I love who I love, and that’s who I am.

I am not all the way out, so I’m proud of myself for even having the courage to write this post publicly. I still have a long way to go, but having the courage to even take those steps is what pride means to me. I was even reluctant to write this post at first, because who would actually care about what I had to say? But there I was again, caring more about what other people thought, rather than just saying – fuck it, who cares what people think.

Maybe this post will resonate with someone else who is in a similar position as I am. If it does, I’m thankful for that and would like to say to you, please don’t be afraid to take the first step….someone cares, someone is in the exact same position as you, and they are waiting to hear from you. You’re not alone.

Pride is to be free of what society labels you and to choose who you want to be every moment of your life. Don’t forget that there is beauty in being self-expressed, but it is also terrifying. So, take your time, and take pride in your love.

Thank you for reading!

Pride Month: Rain Dove (ft. Kate Bornstein & María José)

I’ve spent the past couple hours trying to find the right words to describe Rain Dove, and I still am at a loss, but honestly I think that’s exactly why I wanted to write about them.

Check this video out before I go any further:

Rain is everything I love about the idea of a gender spectrum. I know there are definitely (many) people in the world that have a difficult time understanding Rain’s gender identity, but that’s exactly why Rain is great. There are so many more people out there like Rain than most of us realize, and I think by exposing us to the very real idea that gender is not binary but rather a spectrum, more people will be willing to identify somewhere along the spectrum as well.

Here is Rain talking about how they consider themselves a “Gender Capitalist” and what that means:

Needless to say, Rain is powerful, beautiful, extremely talented, and confidently themselves. Just to note, I find it important to use they/them pronouns when talking about Rain. In a recent interview I read, Rain says, “I’m not transgender because gender doesn’t exist in my book.” Because of this, I don’t think it’s fair for me to assume Rain goes by she/her (or he/him for that matter). Plus, in case you couldn’t tell, Rain is killin’ it as an agender model and deserves recognition as such.

I wanted to end this post with a video of not only Rain Dove, but Kate Bornstein, and María José as well. Three flawless and very influential people that identify three different ways within the gender spectrum.

For those of you less familiar with identities outside of the gender binary, this video (as well as the two above) may have been a bit confusing/eye-opening/interesting/perplexing to you. I understand that. There are so many terms for so many identities that take time to truly grasp and recognize. But my point with this video is that these identities are just as real and just as valid as the cis-gendered male and cis-gendered female identities are. Sometimes it just takes getting to know people along the spectrum to really comprehend it.

Like Rain says in the last video, “my state of being is just unique”. Now that is true beauty.

Something I’ve Learned Recently About Confidence

I’ve been thinking a lot about confidence lately. For the longest time I thought there was a direct correlation between confidence and perfection. I thought the more flawless a person was, the more self-assured they must be. 

Confident.
People.
Can.
Be.
Broken.
People.

Broken is beautiful. Flaws are beautiful. Flaws are POWERFUL

I sure as hell am not perfect. I have a lot of inner demons I still have to conquer. But I have such a drastically different appreciation for myself and those demons now than I ever had before. 

Life is too fucking short to spend time pitying yourself for your imperfections and shortcomings.

Love. Yourself. First. and release your inner power/strength/beauty and never apologize for it.