Heaven holds a sense of wonder….











We lost our internet. Well, we destroyed our power cord, then lost our internet, replaced power cord, it destroyed itself, then we got internet back, and found a power cord in a closet that just happened to fit.

Whatever the case, I am BACK!

And after 4:30 this afternoon, I will be divorced.

Which opens up all kinds of wonderful possibilities, and it must be readable in our auras, because we’ve had people approach us, “If you guys ever want to get married……”

My mother, formerly of the school of “Gays? Meh, hate the sin, love the sinner,” expounds on the potential virtues of a same-sex marriage between Pickle and myself. And not just for us – think of the children!!

My own 3 yo daughter has told me, out of the blue, “As soon as you get married, I will call her Mom, too.”

*shrug*

It’ll happen when it does, but I’m pretty sure neither one of us gets much of a say in things. Those PTB’s already have it all mapped out!



My parents have given me something new to think about. They’re moving to the Missouri-Arkansas border. This weekend, they went down to scope the place out and fell in love with a house. Thirty acres of land, three ponds, a three-bedroom house in which the smallest bedroom is larger than my living room. They fell in love with the town. Met a local shop owner who sent them off with more than $100 worth of merchandise, hopped from Farmer’s Market to Farmer’s Market.

Mom called me up yesterday to rave about the place. Dad’s been texting me pictures left and right.

They want us to move down there with them.

Not with them, with them – not in the same house or anything. But they want me and my family close by. Pickle and I have talked so many times about picking up and moving away, starting over with a clean slate. We’ve dreamed of farm life, growing food and raising cattle and goats, living sustainably. We dream of a house out in the country – or close, so we can still be close enough to have access to the things and people we love.

If we moved to this place, we could have that.

We’d be leaving behind the drama with my kids’ dad and everything tangential to it. But we’d also be leaving behind old friends and connections that took years of effort to build. And we’d be letting some people down.

I’ve committed to my kids’ school as a board member for another year. It would be hard to find someone to replace me. Not impossible, but hard all the same. Pickle and I both have relatively new jobs – I’ll have been at mine for a year in August, if I stay that long. Pickle started hers in March. Both of our jobs were the result of friends pulling for us, and we both are close with the people we work with. Pickle’s best friend is wanting to open a restaurant with her in a year’s time. They’re trying to work out a business plan. If we leave, her friend will be crushed.

And we have a plan for where we are now. Pickle makes enough money at her job to only work one or two days a week. She wants to stay at home with the kids. The kids are thinking they want to be home schooled, and we’re both supportive of that. She’s looking forward to it. On the other hand, if they do choose to go to public school, we’re supportive of that as well. And once both kids are in kindergarten, or once Pickle feels comfortable enough in the role that she’s carving out for herself (or we’re all carving out together), I want to go back to school. I’m guessing that will be in roughly two years. I want to get a degree in small business management and accounting. Partially because I want to help with the restaurant – no one wants to do numbers – and partially because I’ve always wanted to open up my own boutique/café.

Pickle’s always wanted to open a drive-in movie theater and a family fun center, as well as her culinary endeavors.

The town that my parents are moving to don’t have anything like that. They have a building that locals want to turn into a movie theater, but no one has the time to do it. They’d love someone to come and do it for them. Kids in that town have to drive half an hour to the nearest larger community to find fun things to do. There’s a lot of tourism in that area, but not so much in that particular town.

Mom was also quick to share with me that I could be a substitute teacher in Arkansas with only my high school diploma. Nice. But that would open the door to questions about me going back to school to be a teacher. There was a time when I wanted to be a teacher, very badly. I’ve since learned a few things about myself. I love teaching kids, but not in the current system. I don’t like rigidity. And I don’t like being limited in the ways I can help.

My passion isn’t so much teaching, but making a difference. And I have so many ways I’m able to do that. I’m drawn to community organizing for that reason. I’m a resource-finder, a leader-finder. An organizer. I see what needs to be done and I find a way to work on a solution with the people affected.

I can’t help but think this might be a good arena for all these dreams. I’d have to put my organizing on hold somewhat, until I got to know the area and its history fairly well. And we couldn’t make every dream happen all at once; it would be a lot of hard work and planning. We’d have to re-evaluate finances (cost of living is way cheaper down there) and how we’d spend our efforts.

But are we ready to leave home? What keeps us here? We have so many friends whom we’re very close to, and our friendships have survived much worse than distance. We’ve also lost a lot of friends over the last year, people we realized probably weren’t worth calling friends in the first place, painful as that awareness was.

The kids have a life here – they’ve never known anywhere else. They have friends here they’ve known since infancy. If we move them now, it’ll be easier for them to adjust; if we wait until they’re older, those ties will be even stronger and the move would be even more heartbreaking.

Granted, we may be in Kansas, but there’s some semblance of culture here where we are. And we’re an hour away from Kansas City, where we can have a mini-escape when we need to. This town my folks are moving to is three hours from Springfield, five from St. Louis. That’s a long way to go for civilization. Pickle and I are both city girls, to a degree. We can’t live in the heart of the city because we need fresh air and green grass, but we need access to the excitement.

If we moved out there, at some point, I know I’d find myself blogging less than I currently do – because I’d be busy with my hand in every pot.

So much to think about. Cold comfort for change? Do we dare?



I’m on a kick.

I tend to obsess over things until they bore me. Sometimes, this can take weeks or months. Most of the time, it annoys the hell out of the people who love me. I just have to understand hows and whys and whats-its, I guess.

This time, it’s a dual-layered obsession. Layer one – how the hell did I not know I was a lesbian earlier in life? Looking back it’s just so painfully clear to see, and it’s no wonder that the most common reaction when I came out to everyone, friends and family alike, was, “I know. So?” and “I can’t say I’m surprised.” My own mother said, “Why didn’t you just tell me ages ago? I’ve been asking you for years if you were gay!”

I have no idea. Not that it matters for anything, it’s just a source of intrigue for me. Ever since I can remember, I’ve been fascinated by lesbians. We’re talking early age. And I think I was maybe 6 when I had my first “real” crush (as real as it can be that young) on a high-school basketball player named Lani, who was my inspiration for piercing my tongue more than ten years later in 1999. In college, I surrounded myself with dykes – we took over a corner of the floor in my dorm and named it “Dyke’s Corner”, even though I identified as bi and dated mostly guys. And every single guy I ever dated was kind of effeminate. Ok – my ex-husband and I were often mistaken for a lesbian couple, and now he prefers to dress in women’s clothing and wear makeup. And I was in that relationship for ten years.

The other layer, layer two – the whole butch-femme dynamic. In my last post, I said, “The whole butch-femme thing is kind of silly,” and then I went and discovered a blog post complete with a youtube video featuring a tribute to all those rockin’ femmes out there, embedded here for your viewing pleasure:

As I watched that, I couldn’t help but feel like Ivan was talking to me – or, well, people like me, anyway. And it’s true that ever since I’ve been with Pickle, I’ve actually felt like a girl, more than I have other times in my life. And it’s something that I struggle with. I used to fight wearing dresses and makeup. I now find myself fighting that little part of myself that kind of still wants to fight, but not really. That little part of myself that says, “Hey, wait a minute, you never liked this before, what are you doing??”

Pickle says I do it for her, because I like to get all sexied up for her. In a sense she’s right, I do love the way she looks at me when I’m all purty. But I do it for me too. It’s like I’m reclaiming a sense of my identity that I lost touch with long, long ago.

My daughter’s a girly girl. Purses, shoes, make up, dresses, the whole nine. I never knew where she got it from. My mom has told me over and over again, “You were like that too. I don’t know what happened!” I disturbed my mother with my desire to wear frilly party dresses, just like J.J. disturbs me with that same desire. And that child taught me to start carrying a purse. Which I still do only on rare and reluctant occasions.

So maybe femininity is more hard-wired into me than I thought. And maybe that explains why certain “types” of women have always caught my eye, and it’s not the soft, sparkly, made-up type.

Maybe the whole butch-femme thing isn’t so silly. Maybe Pickle’s right. Maybe I was still thinking like a straight person, trying to draw lines that weren’t really there. I thought it was silly because I couldn’t understand why lesbians stereotypes had to fit a heteronormative standard. I couldn’t understand why there had to be an equivalent to a dude and a chick in a partnership involving two women.

I’m pretty sure I was overthinking it. I’m pretty sure it’s not like that at all.

I love women. So what if the woman I love, and the women I’ve liked before her, tend to be a bit boyish? It doesn’t mean I’m trying to replace men with women… I just think there’s something sexy about my girl in a baseball cap or fedora and tie. But she’s still a woman – she’s got all the parts, she’s got the chemistry, and she’s soft, so soft, and she smells so good.

And I don’t have to limit myself to only wearing girly clothes just because I’m with a girl who dresses like a boy – I’m happy wearing my cargo shorts and t-shirts around the house. But I don’t have to limit myself based on a preconceived and poorly understood notion of gender roles, either. And I don’t have to care about reinforcing stereotypes held by the straight world. And I don’t have to limit myself by identifying as femme – calling myself femme is just one more way to describe myself among myriad others.

She thinks I’m hot in a skirt and heels. I feel hot in a skirt and heels. Who cares what the rest of the world has to say about it?



{November 7, 2009}   Introductory Post

I’ve decided to begin a sister blog to my original, with this one having the focus on what it means to be a lesbian and a mother.  I’ve been trying to find resources that are applicable to my situation, and there just don’t seem to be too many out there.  I’ve run across others looking for the same kinds of materials, and it’s a common frustration we share: we just can’t seem to find enough. 

My situation isn’t a unique one.  I was in a hetero marriage for over 9 years, and had two awesome and beautiful kids.  My husband and I split up, and several months later, I came out as a lesbian.  Not long after that, I fell in love with the most amazing woman, completely unexpectedly – I mean this was *not* in my plans at all, I was fully prepared to be a single mom for a while and take some time out from relationships.  But the Powers That Be (heretofore known as the PTB’s) had other designs in mind, and pulled our little puppet strings every way possible, so that two months into our relationship, we were living together and she was ready to commit to the kids.  We’ve now been together six months, and though it’s been really hard at times, there’s no end in sight. 

At any rate, my partner, whom I will refer to at present as Pickle (though I reserve the right to change that at any point in time), wants to be more of a parent to the kiddos, and they love the hell out of her and can’t get enough of her.  But there are boundary issues, and custody issues, and conflicts with their dad, and it’s been really hard on both of us, not to mention the kids. 

I just got a craving for nachos with jalapenos.  Oh yum.

And try as I might, I can’t find many resources for people in our situation: lesbians who fall in love with kids already in the picture.  I would love to hear from the voice of experience on the subject, and I hope to add my voice to the collective.  I want to put my thoughts out there in the hopes that they can help someone else muddle through their own complicated issues with divorce, parenting, sexual preference, and new relationships.If you’ve stumbled across my blog by chance or by intention, please feel free to friend me.  All entries here will be public, because I want my perspective to be shared.

As a side note: The title of this journal, and the name, is borrowed from the Delerium f/Sarah MacLachlan song “Silence”.  It is one of my all-time favorite songs, and my favorite of Sarah’s.  I also happen to love Delerium tremendously, and have other songs of theirs I like better, but that’s neither here nor there.  The point is, I wanted to point out that what I took from the song was an emphasis on living in the moment, not struggling against the waves that threaten to over come one in life, but sinking into them, thereby liberating oneself from fear.  I want to hold that sentiment true in this journal.  That is ultimately my goal.  To explore these issues, yes, but to do so from a perspective of letting go, and sinking into the waves, being free.

That said, I’m going to so sink into my pillows and catch a little sleep.

Blessings,
A.



et cetera