My Ode to Gay Culture: 4 ways the LBGTQ+ Community taught me SELF ACCEPTANCE
Growing up a wild teen in the Bay Area, I would often find myself sneaking out on the weekends with my fake ID to go dancing at the gay clubs in the Castro (sorry Mom).
Once I was inside, the ENERGY was MAGNETIC and MAGICAL. I watched in awe as the confidence was gleaming and glistening off the sweaty bodies of gay men as they danced to house music in pure bliss.
I had never seen such FREEDOM!
Maybe witnessing this during these early years is what gave me the confidence to fully step into my POWER and live my life on my own terms.
Needless to say, my life is anything but conventional.
It’s been over 15 years since I first stepped into that club, and fell in love with the LBGTQ+ community. Since then I have had a 10- year career in nightlife and casino hospitality, from Las Vegas to South Beach.
From the dance floor of Kascade, to the pool parties in Las Vegas, and even with MILLIONS of dollars in production, conventional clubs can NEVER replicate the MAGIC the Gay clubs have organically… just by being WHO and WHAT they are.
Thanks to the EMPOWERMENT of the LGBTQ+ Community I really toke notes on how to learn to LOVE and ACCEPT myself for who I AM.
1) It’s ok to NOT be what others WANT us to be:
So often people are forced to live up to the EXPECTATIONS of OTHERS.
This can happen from culture, class, society, and usually, most directly, our parents.
Pressures to be a doctor, lawyer, or go into the family business. The list goes on and on, but remember!
You only have ONE life to live. Live it the way YOU want, in the ways that make YOU happy & fulfilled. There are NO do overs!
2) BE LOUDER! BE PROUDER! TOGETHER!!
“WE’RE HERE WE’RE QUEEER! GET USED TO IT!”
What a fabulous and powerful statement of UNITY. Gone are the days that people are living isolated from others who have similar interests or lifestyles as we do.
In this modern day of social media we can quickly find Connect on social media with others in the community who we identify with. Once you do, get out there and join some events in person.
Don’t let social anxiety take over!
Being proud about who WE ARE and with OTHERS who feel the same is a great way to overcome insecurities. WE ARE STRONGER TOGETHER!!
3) BLURRED LINES:
From Drag Queens to the gender fluid, the LBGTQ+ community teaches us to think outside the box. To color outside the lines, and screw a crayon, let’s grab a florescent highlighter and write our name BOLD IN ALL CAPS!
From this we can learn how to be CREATIVE with our LIVES.
They teach us how to mold our life and give it shape, and the re-mold it again as we continue to adapt and grow.
4) BE FEARLESS:
Have you ever come up to the edge of something SCARY in your life, feeling like you HAVE to jump, and when you do there is NO turning back, and NO going back to the way things once were.
Maybe it’s a cross-country move, divorce, or career change?
At some point EVERY person in the LBGTQ+ community has had to take a BRAVE STEP into their POWER, into the world show who they truly are.
Ask your gay friends about their coming out story. Some of the lucky ones had little to no friction with their families. Others are not so lucky. Stories filled with tears, pain, heartache, and usually TRIUMPH!
Our LBGTQ+ brothers and sisters have had an uphill battle, but with their support, I learned from their journey to EMPOWERMENT to fully accept myself for who I truly am.