National Coming Out Day

It’s National Coming Out Day 20GayTeen, and I wanted to share something with you. 🙂

A few months ago, I had a written response assignment based on an article I read for school.  It was meant to be a personal response, and I thought, “What would be more personal for me than to respond to an article about LGBTQ people?”…so I chose Domenick Scudera’s “My Gay Lifestyle”.  It’s great; look it up if you’ve never heard of it.  I had to dig deep for things that I’ve buried over the years, and it wasn’t an easy write.  Surprisingly, I had a heartwarming response to this piece – by my instructor and by a few select people I sheepishly shared it with.  I knew I wanted to open it up to others at some point, because I know I’m not the only one who has lived this experience, but I’m always afraid of criticism and failure and I never felt like the time was ‘right’.

As this is my 2nd year of being fully out to the world as a queer, genderfluid, bisexual being, it feels like a great day to celebrate this piece that I am so proud of.

Before I confuse you, I left my citations intact because it doesn’t make a whole lot of sense without them. lol.

(Apologies to anyone I wrote about here.  If I included you, anonymously, you were a vital piece in my story so far – regardless of if that has been positive or negative.  Either way, I am grateful because it has lead me to the person I am and that is someone I am grateful to know ❤ )


I knew I was in awe of women when, at 6 years old, I would look at my first-grade teacher and see sunbeams and rainbows radiate out of her face.  When she spoke, it was as if a heavenly choir had suddenly filled the room.  Everything she embodied caused my heart to flutter.  I’m sure if you had listened closely, you would have heard the soft batting of butterfly wings throughout my abdomen.  I had no idea that this feeling went beyond the notion of wanting to be like her when I grew up.  I had no idea that this feeling went beyond anything normal at all.

I knew I was different when, at 10 years old, I began to recognize that tween heart throb crushes showed up differently for my friends when it came to our favourite celebrities.  My girlfriends were all fawning over their imagined lives with Jonathan Taylor Thomas, Justin Timberlake, and Josh Hartnett, while I was swooning over Goran Visnjic and simultaneously going back again and again to the local cinema to see Titanic – and it wasn’t for Leonardo DiCaprio.  I was unknowingly “ruining the fabric of … society” (Scudera) as I tore at its seams with my unhindered thoughts, silently wishing for hand-in-hand sunset strolls along the beach with Geri Halliwell, Julianna Margulies, and Alex Kingston.  As a girl on the cusp of her impending womanhood, I chalked these feelings up to the excitement of finally reaching my destiny as one of these beautifully charming and effervescent women that I so admired.

I knew I was different when, at 18 years old, I found myself falling in love with my female best friend.  I was in a monogamous, heterosexual relationship at the time, and not having had much – if any – exposure to varying sexual identities, I also found myself very confused.   In the world I knew, you were either gay or you were straight, so where in bloody hell had I landed myself that I’d been caught somewhere between the two?!  The real world is black and white and very binary.  A person can’t be attracted to both men and women…can they?

I knew I was different when, at 20 years old, I met a girl in a bar and felt my head begin to spin (no, it wasn’t from the alcohol).  I was entranced and I couldn’t shake the feeling of wanting to be friends with her, while also wanting to be the object of her affection.  A battle began to rage internally.  If I hadn’t known any better, I would have sworn that on my right shoulder was a Catholic priest shrieking at me about my sin and the burning fires of hell, and on my left, the Devil incarnate himself, pulling me into this lifestyle by the skin of my teeth.  I chose to leave what I knew behind, follow Lucifer, and pursue these feelings because I knew I wouldn’t find the answers by gawking from afar.  Did this mean I was a * gasp * LESBIAN now?!  Short-lived.  I couldn’t seem to shake the cross of my Catholic upbringing or my internalized homophobia, and I allowed myself to be persuaded by a fabrication to leave her (and this lapse in judgement) behind.  The harsh reality of it was that a woman I had considered a close friend had sabotaged my budding relationship.  I was upset, and yet, relieved.  I struggled so intensely with whether I was right or wrong for feeling the way I did.  It became apparent to me just how wrong it must have been when others chose to resign their friendship cards because don’t people know that if a girl has feelings for another girl this means she likes EVERY. SINGLE. GIRL in the entire world?! Or that being friends with someone who is attracted to the same sex might facilitate “the transfer of [their] gayness” to others (Scudera)?!  I marched myself back into the closet and shut the door behind me.

I knew I was cognizant when, at 26 years old, I was introduced to Callie Torres in Grey’s Anatomy and for the first time I saw myself in the image of another.  It was the “A-HA!” moment I had been waiting for.   Here was this strong, accomplished, soft yet bold character who had found herself and proudly professed her love for not just men, but also women.  Sitting there, mouth agape and dumbfounded to have stumbled upon this openly bisexual character in the mainstream media, I thought back to all of the nights I’d spent screaming into the sky trying to rid myself of these feelings, and I found myself asking, “but why would you want to?” That familiar electrified galloping in my chest returned.  No, you cannot “pray away the gay” (Grey’s Anatomy), no matter how hard you try – and believe me, I’ve tried.

I knew I was transforming when, at 28 years old, I’d wanted so badly to announce my solidified bisexuality to my very Conservative, very Catholic family as we watched Ireland legalize the abomination that is gay marriage.  I wanted to turn their angry red faces into faces red with embarrassment as I shouted, “HELLO!  AM I SUCH AN UNNATURAL ABOMINATION? I AM BISEXUAL YOU KNOW. I’VE KISSED GIRLS!!!”.  Instead, I sat there mute with my own cheeks flushing from frustration.  I began to plot all of the ways that I was going to support others like myself, and how I could use my voice to spread love and tolerance in the face of hatred and ignorance such as this. HA! THAT’LL SHOW ‘EM!

I knew I’d found peace when, at 29 years old, I opened the closet doors and stepped out into the world as my full, authentic self.  I’d reconciled that this isn’t something I can change, nor would I wish to.  I’ve been bullied.  I’ve been made a mockery of.  I’ve been invalidated.  I’ve been excluded and judged and abandoned, solely based on who my heart has chosen to love in this life.  I realized that the only permission and validation I’d needed all along was from myself.  I forgave myself for carrying such hatred and disgust towards my heart, my mind, and my soul.  No, my sexuality was never a conscious choice I made; it has been a part of who I am for as long as I can remember.  The only choice I’ve made has been allowing myself to be seen.  In doing so, my thorns have softened and I have learned deeper compassion and understanding.  I have been gifted with patience and empathy towards others and myself.  I have increased the love I choose to put out into the Universe, and in turn, the love I receive.  Because of this, I can confidently say that if I was ever given the choice to press rewind and start fresh – I would choose to live it all over again.


Forty Three

I’m just going to start this off by saying that I had the BEST NIGHT EVER last night.

Disclaimer: This post is going to be regarding Terri Clark’s Back to My Roots solo acoustic tour…what I thought, how I felt, what I experienced, what I wore – you know, basically everything there is in the hand basket.


Last night was a great night.  I (as mentioned above) attended Terri Clark’s Back to My Roots solo acoustic tour – and it was honestly everything I thought it would be, and more. 

My evening started off a little hectic. I was running late, rushing to get ready after work.  I had requested Meet and Greet passes, and was confirmed for them, so I was as stressed as a balloon in a vice that I wouldn’t get there in time.  I still had to travel to Calgary, find my way to the casino, AND find parking.  Luckily, we made it! *phew*

Meet and Greets are always so fun, yet I always feel like I mess them up just by being my socially awkward self.  THE PRESSURE.   

This time, I was determined as ever to have it go smoothly.  For the 20 minutes I had before I went into that little room, I went over and over and OVER what I was going to say in my head.  As I got nearer and nearer to the meeting point, I started sweating more profusely (thank God I remembered deodorant), though I was still (shakily) confident that our exchange would go as planned….until it didn’t. LOL *sigh* As I walked up to greet her, the ladies behind me caught her eye (they obviously knew one another) and her excitement (sweet as it was, bless her heart) TOTALLY threw me off my game; everything I had planned to say disappeared from my mind like someone had hit Control-A-Delete.  And, just as I’d feared, my socially awkward self came rearing forward to take control of the situation, and it ended in a pretty hilarious, yet cringe-worthy (on my end) exchange.

(Sorry, Ms Clark!)


PS – I wanted to tell you that your vest game is A++ lately, but you know, social anxiety…! 


PSS: How cute is my mom?!

After completely embarrassing myself once again, I was happy to go and find my seat so I could immerse myself in the music and forget all about how badly I need to work on my social cues.   I have to say, I’m pretty sure I ended up with one of the best seats in the house.  Front row, almost centre.  It don’t get better than that!

Now, I’ve been to a few of Terri Clark’s shows before, and they’re always a good time.  She’s an enormously talented entertainer, both in song and in story…however, this particular show seemed different – in a great way.  As it’s a solo acoustic tour, which means there’s no band and no fancy travelling along with her, it had an air of magic about it.  Maybe it’s just me, but I felt like last night we got to experience the truest Terri behind the Award-Winning persona. It was hard NOT to have fun right along with her; the joy she was experiencing just radiated off the stage and into the audience like a mist.  She, of course, sang her songs – as singers usually do (I was so happy to hear so many classics in the mix!), she made some beats (whilst we talked amongst ourselves), she had us all splitting a gut with her story telling (particularly in reference to those majestic Rocky Mountains), and I was both mesmerized and ready to spill out of my chair in laughter when she presented us with her John Anderson covers.  

She touched us all by including “Smile” in her set list once again.  Though she gracefully, and beautifully, sang her way through it, I can’t say the same for the rest of us.  I’m not sure there was a dry eye in the house…and I couldn’t help but have been brought back to when Ms. Clark played at the Westerner Days in Red Deer in 2012.  “Smile” was on the set list then, too, and I remember thinking, as she sang her heart out with tears streaming down her cheeks, “Now THAT is strength, grace and love.”  


The night seemed to just fly…had it gone on until the wee hours of the morning, I would not have had a care in the world – even though I still had to travel home and work the next day.  I didn’t get many photos, in part because I don’t want to be that annoying person who blocks the view with my phone the entire time, but also (and more importantly) I was just enjoying myself far too much, and remaining too firmly in the present to pay much mind to anything else other than what was unfolding in front of me.  

I’ve been fortunate enough to see many concerts in my time so far, and I know I’ve probably said it before, but real talk: this show truly, genuinely, was the greatest show I’ve ever attended.   It was raw, and it felt more like a giant get-together with your closest friends.  Terri is SO funny, so goofy, and charming as hell.  She’s a genuine soul, who delivers the whole authentic package, and who is so humble that I don’t even think her reflection acknowledges her fame.   When asked what the best part of being a celebrity was, her response was simply, “I’m a celebrity?” … I mean, COME ON.  If that doesn’t make you smile… 

I’ve been a fan of Terri Clark’s for as long as I can remember…and I’ll remain a fan of hers until I’m old and grey and can’t remember anything anymore. 

My advice to you is this:
if you love good, home-grown country, you need to snag yourself some tickets to this tour.
If you’re a TC fan already, then you’ll walk away an even bigger fan.
If you’re not, you definitely will be post show.

(and also, what is wrong with you?! How are you not already a fan?!)
(Rocking my new TC Logo Raglan Tee! EEEEEEEEEE…and puppy filter, because you know I’m obsessed)

Flashback Moment – I’ll never, ever, forget my very first M&G with Terri. I was 12, and I was obsessed with the colour green, as I recall.  I literally wore a green turtleneck, with lime green eyeshadow packed onto my lids like icing on a cake, and my khaki green nylon purse from Wal-Mart.  When I found out that I had to go in alone (my mom didn’t have a pass) I was so scared that I almost didn’t even go.  I remember as I walked into the room and up to shake Terri’s hand (she must have smelled my fear), she immediately opened up with the warmest of hello’s and complimented profusely my lovely purse from Wally World.  I was just this awkward little kid who didn’t know much what to say, but that experience has stayed with me all these years, and still puts a smile on my face 🙂 (Now if only I could find that old photo…)

Now, as promised, what I wore: 

(Please excuse the wrinkles in the backdrop.  I don’t have a steamer and I wasn’t expecting to use it so soon! I’m such a professional… haha!  But hey, I never promised or claimed to have my poop in a group.  Please don’t judge me.)


BTW: This Raglan Tee is available here if you want one 🙂 It’s SO COMFY. 

Twenty One

Well that was an interesting week.  

I have been so ill, but the optimist (?) in me just thought,
“Oh this is just a stress cold.  It’s fiiiiiiiiine.”

But, it wasn’t feeling all that fine, and so I drug myself to the doctors today to find out that it could be (probably, most likely, almost certainly) strep throat!  Huzzah!

I’m actually okay with this.  Any excuse to stay in the pj’s, amirite?!

Thank God for backlogged photos.

Aside from feeling horrid, I’ve also just been so distracted lately.  You’ve seen that puppy video floating around … you know the one titled “When You Can’t Do Life Because You Get Distracted By Everything”?

Literally me.  #TooSchoolForCool


In all honesty, I tend to get sidetracked and moved around often – I just blame it on my creative side.  SO MANY IDEAS.  SO LITTLE TIME.  

To my fellow walking tornado’s – hi!
(I see you out there…you can’t hide).

I don’t know why but I’ve really been digging the retro styles lately.  Maybe because so many old styles have been popping back up and planting their seeds in my subconscious.

I  picked these jeans up a couple weekends ago for FIVE BUCKS.  #ThanksHM

“I’m not a mom but I’ve got the pants for the job!”
…Who coined ‘Mom Jeans’, anyway?


These high-waisted flared babes are soft, and comfortable, and maybe they give me a “mom bod” (*insert controversy surrounding women wearing high-waisted jeans*) but that doesn’t offend me.  Moms are humans who create other humans within their own bodies.  Moms are badass…seriously, highest admiration for you all…and you read the part where I said they were 5 bucks, right?

Hell, if you can find any clothing item for 5 bucks I say buy it and rock the crap out of it.  Who gives a hootenanny what anyone else says.  Make it YOU.


It’s never your clothes that make you look amazing anyway; it’s the confidence you have in your glorious, incredible, strong, beautiful self.  

(And a great pair of sunnies doesn’t hurt…)



Furthermore, I love these jeans because they give me a hint of a booty.  All my “that’s-not-my-arse-it’s-just-extended-thigh” sisters will relate to me when I say I will take that hint WHENEVER I CAN.  Who’s with me?!


Now, here’s to kicking whatever this is that’s dragging me down and onward to a wonderful (hopefully warm) weekend ahead!