I never really understood the concept of coming out. I mean I always knew I was gay, even if I didn’t want to admit it to myself, and so did everyone else around me. I mean c’mon for my 5th birthday I asked for a Barbie tricycle, I’d honestly be kind of offended if they didn’t know at that point. They never said anything about it to me, they let me take my time in finding myself.
It wasn’t until the 8th grade when the new kid in school took one look at me and asked if I was gay. The answer of course was “What!? No?!” But the longer I thought about it the more I realized that I wasn’t actually straight. So first I came out as pan, on Facebook for heaven's sake. Then about two months later I came out as bi, this is when I had my first and last girlfriend. I never really came out as gay after that because people just kinda understood, and I did too.
It took me a long time to realize that you can come out as many times as you need to. It took me a long time to actually realize who I was and that is perfectly fine. Discovering myself didn’t have a time limit and it certainly didn’t have a linear timeline. Everyone gets to find themselves on their own time, however slow or fast that is. You get to be you when you want to.
Through all of my questioning and the constant “what if’s” my mom was there, always my rock. She always told me, “Who ever you turn out to be, I’ll love you regardless.” She was and still is my biggest fan. Her and my brother have always been there for me, no matter how mad we get at each other. I am so blessed to have the family that I do, and I like to think they are blessed to have me.
Even though my family was there for me I still found it hard to talk to them about how I identify. Luckily, I found an LGBT youth group called TeenMPower, that has helped shape me to be who I am and who I will be. Through TeenMPower so many doors have been opened for me. I was able to start doing drag with the United Court of the Sandias. This past year I was crowned Miss New Mexico Pride Youth 2018, and I have been able to work with and connect my community.
Since I came out, I’ve made so many irreplaceable friendships and have met so many beautiful people that I wouldn’t have gotten to meet otherwise. It is so important to keep the people who want you to continue to grow and who you want to see grow in your life. Those were the people that will make it so much easier. The toxic people in my life needed to be cut, they were holding me back from being the best person I could be.
There have been many things I have learned since I’ve come out. The most important one is that only I can define myself, no one else. It was so important for me to come out, but I had to come out to myself first. That’s when I was able to start defining myself.