"Love accepts you fully as you are. Not as you think you should be, but as you are, right now."
Because it never was and never will be just that simple.
All I've wanted to tell you, everything that's been weighing on me these past years. A big part of my life. The divide between us. The huge piece of me that you don't know. I haven't been able to tell you.
Because for you, it isn’t just like anything else. It isn’t something that I know you will come back from, that you will still love me after. It isn’t just like everything else.
You’d probably like to think that you know who I am. That you know your daughter. But, I just can’t believe that over these past few years you haven’t felt a divide. That you haven’t felt a disconnect. That you don’t know a huge part of my life. That you don’t know the real me.
It's not that I don't love you. It's that I do. It's not that I don't want you in my life. That's why I haven't told you. It's not that I'm questioning myself or my love for you. It's that I question yours.
Because after all these years, how I've been raised. You can't blame me for questioning if your love is truly unconditional. If you love me more than anything else. If you really mean what you say. If your words are empty or if they hold more weight than I've ever given them credit for.
And still after all this time, all I’ve ever wanted to do was just tell you. That wasn’t the fear. It was everything else that would come after. The consequences. The reactions. The loss.
It wasn't the perfect time. It wasn't finding the perfect words. It's the jump. The jump that every time I get to the edge and then take a step back.
You have no idea how much I've wanted to tell you. How many times I almost have. How close I've been. How much easier it would have made everything that has happened.
These past few years away from you, we have ironically grown so much closer. You’ve done so much for me. You’ve been there for me as best you could, as much as I allowed you to be. Given me the space that I needed, the space that I wanted. You've trusted that when I wanted to and was ready I would talk to you. And I’ve developed a new love and appreciation for you. I tell myself that I’d be alright if I lost you, but I think that losing you would have a lot bigger of an impact on me than I want to admit to myself, and that's why I stop myself every time. I always say that it’s just about the money, but I’d figure it out. Because deep down, I’m terrified to lose you because I do value the relationship that we have and all that you’ve done for me. I have no idea where I'd be without you. I know that I don't talk to you as often as I should, but that doesn't mean that I love you any less. That doesn't mean that I don't want you in my life.
What a paradox for us to have grown so much closer, and yet there is such a strong divide between us.
I hate that I haven’t been able to tell you everything these past years. All I’ve ever wanted was to share everything with you, but I have to stop myself before I say something wrong. Before I say too much. Think before I tell you what's new in my life. So much that has happened that if only you knew, you would’ve been able to help me. Be there for me. Half truths. Lies. I couldn’t bring myself to telling you. Not just yet.
Maybe you can handle it, maybe all this time I've doubted you when I shouldn't. But, that isn't my fault. How can I have faith in behavior that has been contrary all my life to the result I'd hope for?
All the times that I’ve been on the phone with you and I’d think about all the things that happened since the last time we spoke. All the times you asked me if I was dating anyone, if I had a boyfriend. All the times that I’d be so stressed out and unhappy or super happy and I could never explain why to you. All the times my aunt would tell me just to “give you a chance.” All I wanted to do was tell you. But, the words always escaped me. I've carried this weight for longer than you've known. And it's about time that I let it go. For me.
I've inhaled far too many times that I should've exhaled. When I should've just breathed. Free from everything.
I had to get through all of it by myself. The highs and the lows. Figure it out. Which was terrifying and incredible at the same time. But, all I wanted to do was call you and talk to you. Tell you what was going on. What was happening. Be able to share all of my life with you. Not have to hide such a huge part of myself.
My heart begging me to tell you, my head telling me not to.
And now, even more than ever, I live a completely different life than you think—than you know. As a completely different person than you once knew. Free, but still held back.
Yearning to tell you about this part of my life that brings me the one thing you’ve always ever wanted for me, happiness.
Wanting to tell you about this journey that I’ve been through these past few years. About discovering who I truly am. About doing what makes me happy. And how much I’ve grown because of everything that I’ve been through that you know nothing about. About the woman that I've grown into. Letting you see who I truly am.
Because even though this one part of me that you don't know about may seem so huge, there is so much of me that you don't know. That I want you to know, that I want you to be able to love. This isn't just about one thing, this is about everything. My identity isn't solely my love life. There's so much more to me than that. I wish that you could see that. In me, in everyone else.
I understand that part of the blame is mine. But, it’s not like you can blame me for being scared. You both aren’t know for being super open and accepting people. Welcoming of anything other than what you believe in and support.
There are so many moments that I’ve wanted to tell you. Just pull you aside. Leave you the letter. Just blurt it out. Tell you everything. Lay it all on the table. And for once, be able to be one hundred percent me.
Not the version of me that you want me to be, the version that I am around you and dad because I know it's not worth the fight. It's exhausting. Love me even if I'm not the person that you always thought I would turn out to be. Life a life different than what you imagined. Because you're just limiting yourself. And if you can't see past who you may want me to be, that's your loss. Because I'm greater than what you could have thought and will create a life that is more than I ever imagined for myself.
And while this is about me. It isn’t just about me. I don’t want to hurt you either. I don’t want you to blame yourself. I don’t want you to try to change me or pray for me. I’ve thought about this for a long time. I’ve processed a lot of it. Made peace with a lot of it. Thought of a million "what if’s." Thought of a thousand difference outcomes. And been preparing for the worst in the process because it’s better to be surprised than let down.
All you’ve ever wanted for me is for me to find someone that makes me happy. Someone that treats me right and loves me. And now that I’ve finally found that, I haven’t been able to share that with you and it hurts not to be able to. I find the most incredible person that I’ve ever known and want to spend my future with, and just because their gender isn’t what you always imagined, I can’t just tell you.
My happily ever after may not be your dream, but it will be mine. And just because it isn't yours, doesn't mean it isn't right. Just because it's different, doesn't mean it's wrong.
I used to think like you, think it was a choice. But I never hated it. And then it wasn’t a choice for me. It wasn’t a phase. And I fell in love. And I don’t think it’s wrong to be happy. I don’t think that God would want that either.
Our souls are genderless and I found a soul that sets mine on fire.
I didn’t fully understand or accept it at first. I don’t expect you to. I just don’t want to lose you forever. I don’t want you to treat me any different. Not look at me the same. Hate me. Think less of me. Love me any less.
I’ve felt this part of myself as a burden when it shouldn’t be. Keeping it from you when I don’t truly want to. But, not sure how to drop the load. One day for the load to be unloaded. Because telling you, isn’t just being ready to revealing a part of myself, it’s about being ready to possibly lose you. And that’s what stops me every time. Just when I’m ready, I second guess myself every time. Bringing me back to the start.
This is the part of me that I hope some part of you deep down knew. That I hope someday you can be okay with. The part that is so much of my life. Past, present, and future. Hurt, happiness, and hope. All ending in love.
Even if I have to lose you for now, I hope it isn't forever.
I hope that someday you may be able to understand that. It wasn't easy not being able to tell you, not being able to share my life with you. Not being able to tell you because it's all I ever truly have wanted.
It was just never that simple, never that easy.
Everything I've been holding inside for years, all that I felt I never could tell you. The day that I do tell you. That one day, you'll be able to understand that all I've ever wanted to do was tell you.
"Do everything in love."1 Corinthians 16:14