As my favorite rapper, Nas, quoted, “It’s one life to live, so live it the best you can”
It took me a long time to actually understand and apply that way of thinking.
Living in one’s truth is not easy. From birth to old age we’re forced to live by many social expectations, including conforming to gender roles and maintaining a heterosexual identity. And so I kept up with these expectations by hiding my sexual identity. I would flirt with females, take extra precautions to not be seen in any gay establishments, and put myself in compromising situations to keep the perception that I was straight. I tried to trick myself that I was living a happy and fulfilled life but I really wasn’t.
It took me 25 years to come out the closet and start living for me. Since that time I’ve experienced more happiness in my life. Thank God for the family members and friends who’ve been by my side and encouraged me to live my life freely and truthfully. I still go through my down moments and bouts of sadness but overall I feel more joy. As I’ve come to embrace who I am I’ve begun to live unapologetically.