For over a month now, I’ve been trying to write a post about what was my first kind of “out loud” gay experience — way back in high school. Of course, that experience not only caused me to slink back into the closet, but padlock the door and bury myself in the pile of dirty laundry, hoping no one would find me there.
But it’s been difficult to write. I’ve told two people two different sections of this story, but never the full thing all at once. And it’s one of those stories that over the years, I managed to almost forget. I put in a corner of my mind where the light never shone, so I wouldn’t have to feel ashamed and embarrassed and utterly appalled at what I almost did to myself, all because I was sad and hurt and young and stupid.
It’s your typical story: girl meets girl. Girl likes girl. Girls become BFF’s. One beer-goggled (actually, screwdriver-goggled) night there was something that happened… not much, not even a kiss. But something more than just nothing. And then recriminations in the painful light of day.
And after that? Well, the rest of the story will remain in draft-form until it reads true, no matter how much it makes me cringe and wonder how I even made it through my teenage years.
I feel like I need to tell it, need to get it out there along with all the other garbage from my past. Turns out that when you expose secrets to the light of day they start losing their power over you. And this is something that’s held a lot of power over the years. It’s been the monster I’ve been afraid to face, wondering how broken it might mean that I am. And it seems rather silly to allow my 17-year old self to run the ship. I mean, I wouldn’t even have trusted my 17-year old self with my car keys.
So, soon. And when it does post, I imagine I’ll hit the “Publish” button and then run and hide and peek out occasionally to see if the secret’s taken on a life of its own, or whether it can now die a natural death so I can move on.