I went to Hawaii (the island of Oahu to be specific) on a girls trip with my Mother whom I haven’t spent time with since January 2013 and My Aunt whom it’s been even longer since we’ve gotten the chance to catch up with in person. My Aunt and I are and always have been insanely close with one exception: my Auntie and I have never had the “Girl-I’m gay” talk. Me keeping such a big secret from her made me feel like a liar although I’d never told her I was straight. Keeping my life a secret from my Aunt was under the instruction of my Mother. My mother is a bit controlling and for good reason- she is wildly smart and slightly omniscient. My mother had me convinced that my Aunt would die if I were to “let her down this way”. I decided to use our family vacation as the perfect time to tell her.
To help y’all understand a bit about the personality of my Auntie imagine Jennifer Lewis and Phylicia Rashad had a middle sister… That’s Auntie Darlene. I have never heard her use politically correct verbiage when it comes to speaking of lesbians. For example
Me: How’s Rhonda’s daughter?
Her:“Well you know she’s a dyke! Soooo….”
1st– Auntie that’s not nice and its incredibly offensive to ME 2nd you have yet to answer my question! Despite her incessant use of homophobic terminology I absolutely adore my Auntie; she is EVERYTHING. Imagine someone who gives the best hugs, has the singing voice of a 50’s lounge singer, and who can make everything okay with a smile… that’s my Auntie! Auntie Darlene is my Mother’s closest and last living sibling; she kept me when I was a kid helped teach me to read, how to tie my shoes, and how to snap (randomly super important being that I’m an amazing snapper). For all intents and purposes Auntie Darlene was my other parent… When Mommy said “No” it was cool cause Auntie hardly ever did. My Aunt has two sons, so when I came along she got to do all the “girly” things with me like get my ears pierced she calls me Sugah (spelled that way cause that how it’s said- NEVER sugar ‘cause I’m ‘so sweet’. I remember when she taught me to cook an omelet this was the first time I can recall being invited into the kitchen I was like 8 and she said to me “Sugah, you wanna learn how to make an omelet? Women who can make a good omelet hardly ever wake up alone!” I was down and she taught the kid how to make a lovely breakfast and that’s exactly when I fell in love with cooking. I’m sharing all this with you guys to help y’all understand our bond. In short Auntie Darlene thinks I hang the moon nightly and calls me (not HER SONS) her heart. With all that said imagine my anxiety when it came to me telling her that I’m a big fat lesbo. It wasn’t hard at all to come out to my Mother being that I was a total cunt about it and E-mailed her and have never really thought she liked me very much. Ouch- that was a weird thought a totally valid one that I’ve never articulated. My Mother loves me no doubt about it… however I’m not certain she has always liked me (we are thick as thieves now). Auntie has always made me feel liked and that’s where the difference in our relationships has always been.
Anyway, it was the last day in Hawaii (the day that my little baby Cousin and I thought was best to tell her) We went down to grab coffee and
I sat her down and simply said “Auntie there will NEVER be a man- and that’s because I’m a lesbian”
she paused swallowed a sip of her coffee and replied “Oh, I’ve thought that for a while… are you happy?”
Her: “okay- that’s all that matters.”
We chatted some more about it from who else knows to her telling me it would have hurt to have gotten this news from someone else. Nothing about our conversation was uncomfortable or forced she reassured me that we were good and that was it. I had dreaded this conversation for 10 years and it was crazy easy. Now I do believe Ellen helped y’all know how black women love some Ellen. So perhaps the timing was just right. Not only was she okay she texted me when she got home some really heartfelt tear jerking messages from “Other than watching you receive your degree I have never been more proud of you” and “If you decide to marry I will help you with wedding decisions and walk you down the aisle.” Imagine how my heart soared. This post is getting too long but I wrote this to let y’all know that sometimes the person you expect to be least okay with you being gay will surprise you and be the most supportive. Find when it feels right and do that shit! Also, it’s not everyone’s business how you live however, living your life in secret is no life at all- find the line that you’re most comfortable with.
Till next time-
Ps theres pictures of my trip too
FEELINGS ARE BEST EXPRESSED IN SONG….yall couldn’t have possibly thought I’d pick anything else