Despite the media and parts of society telling us that peoples differences are to be feared, I disagree, differences are something to be discussed, understood and celebrated. It doesn’t matter what that difference may be.
Today marks the completion of a mile stone, the first Pride Month I’ve been officially “out”, of course my sister and one of my cousins have known for a long time, they were the first two people I confided in, but June was the month it got taken up a notch.
Just like the movies where the girl walks down the staircase in her sparkly prom dress, I walked down in a white off-the-shoulder top, black maxi skirt, and black stiletto heels, with hair, makeup, the whole nine.
This was on my sisters birthday, I asked her what she wanted; her reply was unexpected and heartwarming, “I want Roksana at my party”. I’d never been dressed up in front of our extended social circle before, nervous; shaking like a leaf, I had my movie moment walking down the staircase.
Their reactions were pure elation, sky-rocketing my confidence, and lifting a heavy wight off my shoulders, however, I’m not letting myself forget I still have a lengthy emotional journey ahead of me.
Pride Month was the first time I felt like I had connected with other LGBTQ+ people out in the world, welcoming me with open arms, and reassuring me that I’m not alone.
It took me a long time to tell people not just because I was worried about their reactions, I was scared of coming out as Bi-sexual and Transgender all at once in a part of the world that has a reputation for violence against minorities, that’s probably the hardest thing I’ve ever had to deal with, the fear of being beat up, even killed.
Seeing my friends and family band together in support showed me that the best way to deal with hate and my own fear is to the stand up to it.