I have a blog about my cat that has three readers. I have a blog about poetry that has almost two hundred and a connection on my facebook page. And then there is this, whistling in the dark and waiting for other people in similar straits to walk by and notice my nervous ramblings. I look for them too, with tags like “butch” and “bi” and “closet,” even though I never felt I was in a closet until I realized I wasn’t the girl my parents (and I myself) expected me to be (extra pop culture points if you get the reference!).
I keep asking myself, “How important is this stuff really? It’s not like I am in a relationship. For that matter, my heterosexuality for the past eleven years has been just as theoretical as my presumed bisexuality is now. How important is sexuality unless/until you are in a relationship?”
But then I look at all the anti-gay rhetoric and legislation happening, and I think politically my voice probably does matter and my votes matter. They mattered when I was “just” an ally and they matter now; it’s hard to say how much has changed between then and now except I am not just speaking/voting for the sake of my family and friends. Someday it could be my own freedom or happiness on the line. And the fact that that even makes a difference tells me I was a pretty inadequate ally.
And last week at dinner with R, one of the very few people I have talked with about any of this, I mentioned how in the process of cleaning out my (actual) closet, I realized I should probably sell my kendo armor and punching bag that are in there, and she starts laughing at the irony because suddenly I am actually in the (other) closet and trying to make space for myself, and I suspect that at some point I am going to have to write about all of that, but right now, I have spent more time in the last few weeks thinking about shoes than I have over the previous forty-odd years of my life. Which feels strange. As does the time I spend on WordPress reader looking for blogs by people standing in the doorway of their closets hemming and hawing as I am.
And then, once in a while, you get a comment from somebody who is a bit ahead of you on the learning curve. This comment has helped me a lot:
“The shoes thing, yeah. Slipped on my first pair of Docs when I was 19, and my world changed forever. I was instantly transformed into the bi butch punk that I still am to this day. Dorothy Gale and her ruby slippers ain’t got nothin’ on me. And when my butch grrl puts on her wing tips, she becomes one hot genderqueer butch lezzy. Mm-MMMMM! Never underestimate the defining and transformative power of the shoe.”