K. Elizabeth – “Dear Younger Queer Self” Contest Finalist Story
Dear Younger Queer Self,
One day, you won’t be afraid of people finding out who you are. One day, you’ll be proud of yourself and how far you’ve come.
I know what you’re thinking when you look towards your future. You told everyone you didn’t want to get married or have kids, because you believed that wasn’t an option for you. That was something that got whispers and dirty looks.
The words “fag” and “dyke” are thrown around casually in your world, but this won’t last forever. One day you’ll find your voice. And that voice will tell homophobes to fuck off. You’ll even stand up to your dad one day. He will say something sexist or homophobic, and you’ll look him in the eye and say that it’s not okay. And he will stop. He’ll listen. And one day, he will even walk you down the aisle, towards your future wife.
Instead of reading books like, “Annie On My Mind,” in secret, you’ll study gender and sexuality in college. The thing you held so close to your chest as a child, will be something you teach to others. You can become a beacon of compassion and empathy. You will surprise yourself one day. Maybe the day you write this letter. Your life has evolved into one that ten-year-old you would never envision.
You’ll have a wedding, a wife, and a house with two dogs. Your life will be filled with the joys and heartbreaks that you never thought would be achieved. One day, you’ll decide that you DO want children, and you will cry the most sorrowful tears when you’re told your baby’s heart has stopped beating. When you get to this point, don’t lose faith… Because around the corner are double “rainbow” babies… twins… that will make your life better than you could ever imagine.
One day, you’ll live in a world that won’t always be kind or safe… but you’ll have the voice to make a difference. You’re raising the next generation of loving, free-spirited, fighters that will not let others be called names. Make your voice louder. Fight for what you believe in. And no matter what those dark voices in your head say… Don’t give up.
You have so much to live for.
Your Future Queer and Happy Self