Hello dear friends,
Firstly, HAPPY PRIDE! This is such a beautiful time of the year. My heart soars as I watch people live and thrive in their best lives. From vibrant posts on social media, to literal dancing in the streets. I also feel proud of those who aren’t out, who haven’t found the right words, the right moment, or the safety to do so. People always say it’s such a brave act to come out. No. It’s a brave act to be true and honest with yourself, it should not be a brave act to come out and the only reason it is, is because of those in the world who make it not safe to be out.
I also want to recognize how exhausting Pride can be, and to all of my queer siblings I want you to know: that is ok, expected, and I support the heck out of you taking care of yourself extra specially this month! To those who aren’t out, Pride can be even more overwhelming, exhausting and in many cases, sad, take care of yourselves. To my queer siblings attending especially public celebrations, please remember you never know who isn’t out, we’re a warm and welcoming community, let’s always remember that.
During Pride, and throughout the year from my friends, I am uplifted and encouraged by everyone who so vocally professes their support and embracement of the entire queer community, and from me to you, thank you! For those of you who are reading this and thinking, ‘how beautiful, I want to be more supportive of the queer community as a straight person.’ Well, you’re in luck, here are just a few ways to get involved! It's pretty easy, the biggest one, call people what they want to be called. Language is so powerful, I cannot express how euphoric it feels to hear someone you care about call you what you want to be called. While this is referring to pronouns, I also can’t express how much it matters that partner is becoming a more standard term across the board. It keeps us from having to out ourselves, and for all relationships it’s a wonderful, equifying term, just a small step in smashing toxic gender roles. The most important thing though is to just get in the way. Do you hear someone using language that's not ok? Kindly remind them we don't say that anymore. See someone regularly misgendering another family member, coworker or friend? Kindly remind them. And most of all, please stop walking by transwomen being assaulted. Call someone, call a crowd, call the police if you absolutely have to, but do something. (Oh, and good goddess, VOTE)
As I talk about how beautiful Pride is, all the fantastic steps the world takes every year toward being a more loving, a safer, and a better place for all persons, I must also recognize the steps still needing to be taken, and sadly the steps that have been taken backward. In 2022 alone, just halfway through, 25 anti-trans bills have been brought forth, and there are 133 active anti-trans bills across the US. To my friends and family within Washington State. … 2 of them are here, and both brought forward this year. (source in comments) On one hand (the much larger hand), this is awful, this sucks. But it is also a moment, an opportunity for change. It’s a moment to call your legislators, tell them that you don’t support or want this. Remind them that they work for you. To my trans siblings, while this feels bad, it also means we’re winning. I wish we didn’t live in a world where we had to defend our rights, where people weren’t scared of what they didn’t understand. The fact that we no longer have to live, and hide, in the shadows means we’re making forward progress. We can be out and proud, and live in many places safely and with rights that protect us. That wouldn’t have come if there hadn’t been those in our community willing to be out there, visible and proud. That is what we celebrate this month: those who came before us and began fighting for our rights, and the privilege that we now have as a community to continue to push those rights further.
This leads (finally) to my big announcement. I have spent a lot of time thinking, soul searching, and talking with trusted friends and advisors. The conclusion I have come to is that I have one really obvious way to put all of my unique skills to work for the queer community. I am going to depart next August (2023) to circumnavigate the globe. I will be the first transgender person to circumnavigate the globe. (I will also be the first openly gay person to circumnavigate solo of any gender, and Swirl will be the first San Juan class sailboat to circumnavigate). Clearly, what works is visibility, showing people that we’re here, we are comfortable in our own skins and truth. People respond to that, I’ve experienced it one-on-one and in larger settings. I cannot think of a better way for me to use my accumulated skillset to better and further the movement of trans safety, acceptance, and inclusion.
I hope you will all share in my excitement in this project. Please share this post and help me get the word out! As always, I am always here to talk, need someone to tell that you’ve figured out you’re queer, I’ll celebrate with you! Have trans questions that you’re scared to ask? I’m pretty hard to offend, and excellent at setting gentle boundaries if you ask an inappropriate question. Want to know about my circumnavigation, ask away! There are no dumb questions.
Lastly, and most importantly, thank you, to my whole community, support network, chosen family, I couldn’t be who I am without all of you.