Seeing yourself for who you are and not for what you've been told about yourself.
Because visibility matters.
It doesn't have to mean visibility as in "coming out," for some of us were never living behind a closet door. Some of us sat in the room with you, in a corner, crouched and afraid. Shrinking. Shielding ourselves.
Some of us blazed into the world, somehow bold by birthright. Assured at a young age and seeing the beauty of ourselves incrementally rather than through a spark or explosion of self-actualization.
But we were there. In the room with you. You refused to see. And if we were holed up in a closet – for protection, for solitude, or to allow for gestation and blossoming – we do not always feel the need to come out. Our world is enough. It's not always important for us to come into yours.
Therefore, in living our truth, it is not always the coming out that we experience; it is the inviting in. You're coming into our world, our spaces, without disrupting or erasing. You're there to see us, to feel us, and to bask in what makes us unique.
For my queer people, the beautiful undefinable.
Living visibly so that others like us can see their possibilities.
Those who are not like us allowing themselves to see our truth and resist the urge to blot it out or shape it for their own agendas.
Us seeing the beauty of ourselves, seeing our own stories rather than the narratives forced on us.
I was seventeen when I invited my parents in; when they attempted to bring me out, but I started learning to exist within my own space on my own terms. Everyone's coming out – coming into themselves – story is different. Some violent. Some smooth. Some deferred. Some ongoing. All important.
We exhibit the true colors of our history. The hues of brown hands hurling stones at an inn, sparking a flurry of freedom and a downpour of vivid truths.
The hot pink unbridled sexuality of ample bosoms, towering erections, navel kisses, backdoor entries, and fingered flowers pouring our sweet nectar. Pink pussy penis penetrating psyches. Sensual tangling limbs, meeting lips, and expressions of freedom.
The red ribbons representing life lost, and also reminding us of those living with – not dying from – a disease.
The orange zest laced healing in spilled tea and head nods of acknowledgement on crowded streets.
The yellows of sunlight on faces emerges from the shadows of shame, stigma, oppression, and repression; freed from the shackles of the defining words and eyes of others.
The green of nature. Our natural states of being, beyond assignments at birth, beyond society's constructed roles, and beyond the language forced on us. The vines of truth weaving about our feet and reaching into our hearts to unfold into bright emerald florets of radical self love.
The turquoise magic swirling in our minds. The art. The pirouettes. The prose. The words and brushstrokes which carry generations when no one else could carry us; when no one else would.
The blues. The low blues of depression we've overcome. The blue forget-me-nots flanking the coffins of those who didn't. The blues. The songs of our love for each other. The blues. The serene blues. Waist level waters sloshing around us; a sea of bold resilient waters of the Nile, the Jordan, the Mississippi, and the blues of the rivers of veins in our arms outstretched to one another in harmony.
The violet spirits. Regal. Royal. Both King and Queen simultaneously. Lavender scented dreams of liberation. Fields of purple for dancing. Dancing. Gay and free.
Free to know ourselves. Free to be ourselves. Free to see ourselves.
Because visibility matters.
And so do you.