FREEDOM

"Seriously, I did not mean for this to happen on Mother's Day. I'm so sorry." - Me, coming out to my mother this Mother's Day

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I mean how else was I supposed to start this blog - let's get it out on the table from the beginning, no? I've spent too much time calculating conversations. It's time to hit that equal sign and share my answers with the class. How's that for a gdamn analogy, math/english teachers grades k-12?

If you're joining us from Instagram, welcome. If you're joining us from anywhere else, thank you for keeping up with me after not having posted in over a year. Mad props to your loyalty, bro.

Okay so how do we begin with this? I guess I'll start.

Gang, I can't tell you how many times I've started this letter/blog/essay/diary entry over the last two years. I've written and finished a few, sent them to my note app on my phone and had Siri read them to me, I've made a dramatic-as-hell video, solely intended to be shared with my family, and I've handwritten dozens of shakily-scripted notes that I secretly hoped would 'go rogue' and find their way into the hands of the people I was too afraid to talk to.

Listen, the last thing I'm trying to do right now is make some triumphantly-tearful declaration of my recent confession. That's not what this is about. It's about vulnerability in it's most childlike moment. This is the vulnerability you'll find sobbing in the doorway of a kindergarten classroom after mom leaves for work, only to be hysterically laughing 1-3 minutes later because someone put an orange cone on their head, claiming their territory as an absurdly glorious weirdo, soon to be your very best friend.

That Sunday, the day of Shawn, as I call it, I knew enough was enough. The conversation leading up to this moment of true vulny-ness was nothing but a divine intervention of sentences stringed together that almost made me yell my truth:

"OKAY HOLY SHIT, YES, FINE, YOU CAUGHT ME; I'M LIKE PRETTY GAY." 

Freedom.

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For almost two years, I've dated men and women. I like both. I'm attracted to both. I don't see a difference when it comes to gender. I mean, sure, guys are generally "taller" ?? What other difference is there though? I'm asking in sincerity. Just kidding. I started out hating the identity of "bisexuality" because I simply didn't believe in it. I spent my entire life believing I would be married to a man (before 30 obviously lol ew otherwise), and then spending eternity with our 4 children in a beach town where I didn't have to work but I wanted to work. Well think again, sis. 

*Very* shortly after moving to LA, I entered one of the most tumultuous relationships I've experienced thus far. It was an experience. Let's leave it at that. But it was with a woman. And it was really good when it was good, and really bad when it was bad. I fell in love with the emotion of it all.

I kept exploring after that and met someone who warned me from the get-go that loving them more than a friend was an exceptionally bad idea. So I did exactly that, because obviously, and soon after got the living, breathing shit broken out of my heart. I was helpless. I'd never experienced a love like that in my life. And it still hurts to this day. But I can say that with a smile on my face. Because the love I felt was so true and so real. It was friendship love first, romantic love second. But both felt equally strong. That relationship woke me up, put me in the washing machine, kept me there for an extra spin-cycle, and then hung me out to dry. And I obediently clung to my dedicated clothespin until the wind picked me up stronger than my sadness could bare, breaking me from my bargaining that she would come back to collect me off the ground.

The lessons learned through all of that?

1. Listen to people when they tell you they "can't be your somebody"

2. Gender plays the very last role in my rules of attraction

3. I am 100% capable of loving somebody like I never thought I could

After my first few experiences of living in LA, dating men and women, coming out to friends and family, I quickly realized that keeping all of this inside was doing so much more harm than good. I spent so much time being angry and frustrated at myself for not being able to give a clear answer on my sexuality. So I kept it quiet for the sake of not burdening others with my confusion. The reality? No one is confused. It doesn't matter. 

In my mothers words, (that have me choked up still)

"I will love whoever you love. Simple as that."

I am so sorry for putting anyone in the box I put myself in for so long. Un-acceptance, shame, guilt, fear, you name it. But I'm absolutely not sorry for taking my time. And am most CERTAINLY not sorry for being exactly who tf I am. Every single week in therapy (hell yeah for therapy) was mostly about my coming out to my family. We did pro's & con's on a whiteboard, we practiced what I'd say and how I'd say it, we did breathing exercises when my fears overcame my thoughts, and we *literally* joked about coming out on Mother's Day. Oopth. 

I don't know what this all would have looked like if I came out sooner or later, but I don't care. It has been painful but it has been even more perfect. I am so unbelievably grateful to my family for exceeding the expectations I didn't even prepare to have (positive ones) and making me feel more at home than ever, to my friends who listened to my rants & raves & loved/encouraged me through every single stage of this story, and to my current/old crushes for making me feel less alone and teaching me vulnerability. Also to Brene Brown on the vulnerability-front just because she invented it.

To most of you in my current world of day-to-day life, this has been far from shocking. You either know it from my18-year relationship with Shania Twain or you just know my current dating life. To others, maybe the opposite. I wish more than anything that I could sit every single important person in my life down individually to share in more detail. I mean that sincerely. But that would take a long time and a lot of mileage that neither of us have time for. So I'm sharing it with you here.

The world we live in now is scary and it needs love. I have lots of it to give. Listen, I'm an open book. If you have questions, I am more than happy to answer. I'm not ashamed, nor am I afraid to give you the deats. To quote Demi L, "This is the real, this is me, I'm exactly where I'm supposed to be now..." So. Let 'em rip.
 

Also, happy Pride Month. I'm Proud AF.

Xoxo, J