I've thought a lot about the last year and the countless emails….. so many of them were heartfelt and raw and grateful…. it's really hard for me to discredit those regardless of the affect all of this has/had on my life. I don't mean that to sound so… 'self-less'…. there are countless times when readers would comment and help me - tell me where I was going wrong and how to do it better.
And I listened. I learned from a huge pool of humanity, bereft of color or gender or 'class' distinction - but just from human experience and I think that that has been invaluable. Very few other times in our world is such an opportunity presented to just *hear* someone's story and experience and advice: and yet I have no face or race or other life experience to put with it, to jade it or change it. That's actually kind of amazing if you ask me.
So last night I got this email, and honestly…. I had to read it like three times. I'm incredibly humbled that this person feels the way they do. It's really… well, it's kind of cool.
I have to hope that there is some greater master plan behind all this…. some *reason* that my entire life for the last year is online for anyone and everyone to read and critique and criticize…. and most importantly, I do hope that my honestly about my sexuality helps at least one person, because then it will have been worth it all.
I got this sent to me last night.....:
I want to tell you so much, but I don't know if it will come across the right way.
First of all, I related to your story so much and I wish I had been more like you through my divorce but I went with a different reaction of fuck you and fuck off, and I just almost completely cut them out. It was easy to do because he was in the navy and ended up stationed far away. He didn't exactly try to keep a relationship with his children anyway...
But since I started reading your blog last August I've strived to just look at life in whole, differently.
So, some things I wanted to tell you:
We lost everything in a fire back in January. It happened the morning I turned 9 months pregnant with my 4th child (my first boy). I literally thought to myself - standing out on the sidewalk watching the house go completely up- am I going to freak out right now and go all crazy or am I going to get my ass in gear and look at it like Elle taught me to look at life? And no, you didn't give specific lessons on how to get through trying times, but your reactions to the most devastating life event taught me how to look at life differently.
So, I made jokes when I needed to. I cried when I needed to, (although I never cried over losing the stuff), cussed when needed and I thanked the universe that we all got out alive and believe it or not EVERYTHING worked out. The community, my work, etc. came together and put us in a better place than we were before the fire. I wanted you to know that even though you didn't set out to help people with things, you are and not just hard divorces. If people will really look at what you did and understand what it would take out of a human to take the high road when you could've so easily not, they would get it.
So that brings me to your most recent revelations and I read what some people say to you and I'm like, "Really? Really you idiots? You could only identify with her when you thought she was straight?" Your pain was more painful when they thought you were straight but now that you are being true to yourself they can't relate and it must not have hurt? What the fuck? I will never understand some people... I don't know much about the LGBT community, shit I was raised in Alabama, most of my family is still there, I only came to California with my 1st husband and when I tried to move back to Alabama after the divorce I realized I had outgrown the backwards thinking (yes, it's STILL backwards and behind there) and high tailed it back to Cali with no intention of ever leaving here again. And I don't want to come across wrong, I am grateful for my country upbringing and most of the values it instilled in me. I however, will not raise my children there and feel I can teach them those values on the west coast just as easy. Sorry, I went off on a tangent, but I wanted to say that I have family that refuses to live their life true to themselves because we were taught that homosexuality is wrong, so even though they know they are they refuse to live their life. And back in April my nephew (15) came out and of course my Alabama family is shunning him and I am on their shit list because I'm standing behind him and supporting him all along the way. So I feel like an idiot, but I love my nephew and I will not be another person telling him he is wrong, unwelcomed, or unloved.
Thankfully I have some really good friends who do understand LGBT and literally had to take me by the hand and walk me out of ignorance so I can be sure to give my nephew and others the right support. And 30+ years of ignorance is a lot to undo, lol. And now, you're life story is helping me in that aspect as well.
Anyway, I don't want to take up to much of your time, and I still don't know if I came across right, but please please understand that I thank you so much for your major part in making me look at life differently and I wish everyone would look past the divorce part and understand you made a life decision about how to react that just showed up in how you reacted with the divorce.
We, as humans, don't tend to react to hard situations with dignity and integrity, so good job! And hang in there. Thank you so much.
I am so sorry for the loss of your home - and I am incredibly humbled that at such a time in your life anything I ever wrote came to your mind and helped you in some way..... thanks for sharing that with me. I'm glad to hear that things turned out for the better.... we should all be so lucky. :)