I’m far from quiet about being Latina. But because I’m not what people often think of when they think of the word “Latina”—I have lighter skin, a non-Latinx-sounding last name—people often assume I’m something other than what I am.
I’m far from quiet about being queer. But because I’m not what people often think of when they think of the word “queer”—my favorite color is pink, and I’m girly as they come—people often assume I’m something other than what I am.
Yesterday was National Coming Out Day. And in case anyone doesn’t know, I am queer. As a teen, I fell in love with a boy who grew up as a girl. Learning how I love—realizing that I love in a way that is sometimes met with fear, disdain, and hate—almost killed me. But it also saved me.
To those out there who are queer like me, I hope, so badly, that the closet isn’t breaking you. But if it is, please know you’re not alone. And whether you’re still hiding in those secret places, or you’re venturing out, or you’ve been out for so long that the closet is a world you’re forgetting, I’m sending you love.
Anna-Marie McLemore writes from her Mexican-American heritage, and her love both for cultures she grew up in and others she’s learned about along the way. She is a Lambda Literary Foundation Fellow in fiction. Among her favorite things are fall leaves, Irish dancing, and lesser-known fairy tales. Her YA debut is THE WEIGHT OF FEATHERS, a magical realism story of traveling shows, girls who can make anyone believe in mermaids, and tightrope-walkers who wear wings.