Saturday, February 26, 2011

Straight as a Crooked Line

Is it as delightfully funny to anyone else that I have not one, but TWO ex-boyfriends with birthdays today?  I know, I know, you're probably like, "Wait...did she just say boyfriends?"  I did, in fact.  Prior to Smith, I was a card-carrying member of the heterosexual club (those heteros don't have nearly as much fun, by the way).  Anyway, everyone's got a story and here's mine:

When I got to college, I was known to loudly proclaim to anyone and everyone that I was straight, straight, straight.  My older housemates laughed in my face and told me, quite plainly, that they gave me until spring to realize I was gay.  The signs were there long before Smith: I had a massive crush on that girl from Stick It (Missy Peregrym) and I had once kissed a girl (and yes, I liked it) but that is a story for another time.  I met my first girlfriend in the winter of my first year of school and we were quickly inseparable.  All the U-Haul jokes and lesbian cliches applied to us.  We naively believed it would last forever, despite the huge gaping holes of communication and maturity in our relationship.  The tumult of our relationship finally ended in the fall of my junior year, three weeks after the worst time of my life (another story for another time).  At that point, I had embraced the fact that I wasn't "straight" after all, but since I was lucky enough to be at a place like Smith where "labels are for jars, not people," I didn't have to call myself gay either.  Because truthfully, I didn't feel like either one.  I still liked boys, I thought they were cute and could be funny and likable.  But I felt the same way about girls.  And I HATE the word bisexual.  I think it should be eliminated from the dictionary.  Do not ever call me that.  EVER.  Anyway, life at Smith continued and relationships came and went - none of them serious, all of them with other girls.  And then, I met Alix.

Alix and I met at a lesbian dive bar in the West Village.  We were both there purely by chance, happened to lock eyes across the dance floor, and I was amused by the worst pickup line I've ever heard (I'll spare her the embarrassment by not printing it here).  So we started dancing and talking and realized, quite truthfully, by the end of even such a raucous night that we were meant for each other.  The weekend we spent together only solidified the fact and it was from that moment on that we knew we'd be together forever.  Neither one of us has ever looked back and despite our differences in self-definition - Alix identifies as gay, while I choose to more loosely define myself as "gay for her" - our relationship is as solid as a rock.

I guess my point in telling this whole story is to illuminate the fact that there are a million different ways to be right for someone and not all of them - or hardly any of them - fall neatly into some pre-labeled category.  Alix and I work together because we talk about anything to each other, she knows the worst and best parts of me, we fight and make up before going to sleep, and we work hard, every single day, to make each other happy.  THAT is what makes a relationship work.  Not a definition, a label, or a category.  Is it easy all the time?  Hell no.  But is it worth it?  Unquestionably yes.


Margaret said...

I'll sign the petition to eliminate bisexual from the lexicon. It sounds flimsy and indecisive, like a straight girl who kisses girls at parties because guys think it's hot.

Cait said...

Yes! I totally agree. It reminds me of Katy Perry (not in a good there a good way to be reminded of her?).

David said...

You can't leave that hanging. What's the line?

Cait said...

The line is...nonexistent. Remember how we don't label anything? :-)