Pride and being proud.  

Here we are with many celebrating pride in cities around the country.   Pride in being who we are from lesbian and gay people to transgender males and females along with a healthy mix of ally’s and supporters.  Large gatherings celebrating something as basic as who we are.  So as this goes on you see the memes asking about “straight pride” and see some asking where their party is…  Yours is everyday.  Everyday you can stand with pride in who you are while some of us live in fear of hate and death.  

First I’ll address something that happened recently.  I have a friend who’s car was vandalized with some pretty nasty slurs about her trans status.  Most of us would be mad, irritated, ready for revenge, but not Alyssa.  While most of this world is all about revenge, fighting, and hate she showed a whole lot of love.   She painted her car pink to show that hate won’t win and proved she wouldn’t hide.   She isn’t afraid of them nor is she willing to hide herself for the sake of others.   She showed the definition of pride.   Pride in herself and pride for who she is.  

Kage is a man whom I meet recently.  He and I were on a panel together and became friends pretty quickly.  He is an actor, groomer, and  husband.  He is also an advocate for trans rights.   He heads a local support group and is always available for help.   He will spend hours answering questions and still finds time to educate others.    He shows pride in who he is everyday. 

I’m going to talk about my friend Alli.   She is a former rugby player and current construction forman.   She is outspoken online and very much the girl to have when you need a friend.   She is always available for others and stands proud when walking onto a site.   She shows her pride in who she is everyday.  

Lastly I’ll talk about my friend Gabby.  This girl has grown exponentially this past year.   She is learning that outside beauty is based on what’s inside.  She is showing a strength that few possess and finding a world outside depression.   Gabby has become someone who will change the world.   I can see her going far and doing amazing things.  Know that I’m proud to call her a friend.  

So this month as we talk about pride I want you to remember that pride isn’t imaginary.   Pride isn’t something that the LGBT community just started for the sake of a party.   We are proud.   We are proud to go against what is considered the status quo and we are proud to stand firm in who we are.   
We have pride to overcome hate and intolerance.   We walk in our lives everyday with a smile on our face even when it hurts all to kill the perceptions of who we really are.  From work to home we are just a small handful of people trying to make a difference.   We won’t bow to anyone nor will we hate. We will always be proud and we will always balance your hate with love. 

Pride is Alyssa, Kage, Alli, and Gabby.   Pride is when I’m confronted with a man saying how many dies for their cause of equality and asking if I would do that same and without missing a beat I redponded “If it makes the world a better place for everyone, I would in a heartbeat.” Pride is being free of who we once were.   We  will live and we will be that difference that this world needs.   We will stand with pride and no matter how much it hurts, we will stand with love.   Love, even to those who hate us.  

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