The summer before freshman year of college, I shaved all my hair off. When I went to one of my first college parties, I heard someone ask another girl if I was a lesbian. I remember feeling so ashamed.
I started growing my hair back.
Sophomore year, my best friend and I were on FB when he noticed that my interested in section was blank. He mentioned that a lot of gays and lesbians left it blank and that people would perceive me as a lesbian.
I put down ‘interested in men.’
Junior year of college, I put a ring on my thumb and someone mentioned that , “that’s what lesbians do.”
I removed the ring.
My senior year I continued my carefully orchestrated performance. I transformed myself into the sort of girl no one would ever question. I played at convincing the world and myself , and for a time I did both. But lies have a way of rising to the surface. I envied the lesbian girls I saw in school, who seemed so secure in their sexuality. I avoided them like the plague, scared of the cracks in my lies.
I spent four years trying to be straight.
I spent four years trying to bury a part of myself because I was terrified of the way the world would perceive me.
The irony was that I had preached to my friends for so long the importance of being true to oneself. I was the guru, the soothsayer and truth teller.
I was part of the fringe, and in everything I did I played up this notion of not giving a fuck about what people thought. But all the while I lied to myself and to my friends for four years. I was a fraud and that’s what I had to be ashamed about.
Too many holes in too many places.
I slowly began to unravel
It was scary and liberating
and as I found myself
I shed both tears and blood
but somehow I pushed through all the bullshit I had constructed.
I laid myself bare
and finally let myself be.
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