No, I’m Not Pregnant

The irony of being queer and chronically ill is that I’ve been asked by doctors if I could possibly be pregnant… a lot.

Now this is part of their job, and I know they have to do it, but the medical field often seems very unaware of any sexuality other than straight. I don’t believe you should make any assumptions about other people – especially when it comes to gender and sexuality. I’ve been asked straight up, “how do you know you’re not pregnant?” Almost like they’re testing me.

Most of the time doctors or nurses ask if you could possibly be pregnant, because they are going to administer a test or medication that could be harmful to a fetus. It makes sense why they ask and make you take a pregnancy test, but it gets a little redundant. I did infusions every day for a week at an infusion center, and every morning I had to pee in a cup for a pregnancy test. If you saw me yesterday afternoon and saw how sick I was, how in the world could you possibly believe I got pregnant in the short time I was gone?

If I can barely walk down the stairs some days, how in the world do you think I’m having sex? Also I rarely leave my house, so where am I supposed to find someone who wants to have sex with me? At this point it’s pretty comical, but still annoying. I don’t mind peeing in the cup, but paying at times $150 for a pregnancy test that it is literally impossible for to be positive is ridiculous.

One visit to the ER, I had already been there for hours and received medication, and now it was time for me to be discharged. They wouldn’t let me leave until I had a pregnancy test, although if I was pregnant any damage done to the fetus was irreversible at this point. This situation was particularly frustrating because I went to the ER for excruciating period cramps. They were taking a long time to do the test, and when the doctor came in I said,” I think it’s pretty obvious I’m not pregnant. I’m on my period.” And yes I know there are abnormalities where sometimes you are pregnant, but will still get one last period, or something could be wrong and you could be bleeding, but that obviously wasn’t the case. Apparently this made the doctor mad (even though I said it in a joking manner and wasn’t trying to be rude, but whatever) and she said, “you could be having a miscarriage,” and gave me the evil eye. I had an ultra sound of my ovaries and uterus while I was there, so I think it would have been clear if I was pregnant.

For someone who’s never been pregnant I’ve taken a lot of pregnancy tests. But hey, just mark it down as a funny story, I guess.

Lots of Love,

(and an empty womb)

Alyssa

 

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The Unknowns of Being Queer

Being a young queer person, there area lot of things I can’t just count on.

I don’t know if I’ll be legally allowed to get married when the time comes.

I don’t know if I’ll be able to adopt kids if I decide I want them.

I don’t know if I’ll be able to afford an IUI or IVF cycle if me or my wife decided we wanted to carry.

We may have these right’s now, but they could be taken away in a instant.

It’s scary to know that basic human right’s can be taken away from you at any moment. The new government that is going into action soon, and it scares the shit out of me. Knowing there have been thousands of gay couples before me that didn’t have these rights and lived happy lives, makes me feel somewhat better, but it’s hard to imagine having them taken away.

My whole life society has taught me I should want to get married, and have kids. For a woman those are supposed to be the most important things, but when those things can be taken away, it’s hard to let yourself desire those things. Getting married and having kids is something I’ve always wanted; Long before I came out, and now even more after.

Thinking about the future and having a wife and kids, makes me so excited. I want to go on vacations, and make breakfast on a Saturday for my family. The legality of certain aspects of that could make obtaining those things difficult, but not impossible. I try my best not to worry too much about those things when nothing bad has yet to happen. Worrying isn’t going to make the situation any better, but it’s not an easy thing to stop doing.

Living in a conservative red state can also be difficult. How are you supposed to find someone to date, when everyone around you seems straight and against your sexuality? Of course their are other LGBTQ+ people in my area, they just aren’t always easy to find. The threat of violence against you is real. I would be very hesitant to show any kind of PDA in public in some areas in Texas. Sometimes safety is more important than happiness.

Taking action and fighting for not only my right’s, but also others is the only thing I can do right now. Trump may be hiring what seems like strictly only homophobic people, but the LGBTQ+ community is resilient. All we can do is fight and make it known that oppression is not okay.

Lots of Love,

Alyssa

Putting Ourselves in Boxes

The LGBTQ+ community does something I’ve never been able to understand.

We put ourselves in boxes.

Lesbians are categorized into femmes, butch, chapstick, lipstick, soft butch, stone butch, stem, and the list keeps going. Gay guys are also categorized, but by body type, and amount body hair, which is even more confusing to me. From bears and otters to jocks and “clean cut,” to probably a hundred other terms I’ve never heard of. If society is so set on putting us into boxes, then why are we doing it to ourselves?

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“What does she look like?”  Oh you know she’s like a 5.7599 on the butch scale
I don’t think there’s any harm in identifying as a femme or a butch girl, but why does it matter? Gender presentation, is just that, a presentation. You aren’t getting any more information from one of these labels then you can from justing looking at the person. Being a “femme” doesn’t mean you have a certain personality or act a certain way. All it tells someone is that you dress more femininely. So why do we use these words to describe ourselves?

Queer guys classifications confuse me even more. How does someones weight or amount of hair effect their personality? It doesn’t. If we aren’t getting much information from these labels, then why do we use them? Being a “baby gay” and getting thrown into a world of slang and labels can be very confusing. I felt like I need to identify with one of these terms, but I didn’t feel comfortable labeling myself with any of them, and that’s okay. If you feel caught up in the world of labels, just know you don’t have to pick one or even fit into a certain label.

Each of these terms carries stereotypes about the persons character traits, and their general demeanor. The Queer community deals with enough stereotypes from the rest of society, so I just don’t get why we would do it to ourselves. I personally don’t want to have to fight societies ideas of what lesbian is or looks like, along with other queer girls ideas of how I should look or act based of being a more feminine presenting lesbian.

I find these terms unnecessary, and don’t really see their use, but if someone else wants to use them, it doesn’t offend me.  Do you use these terms to describe yourself or your friends? Let me know if you do like these terms, and why they are important to you. I’m open to all sides, and would love to hear your view!

Lots of Love,

Alyssa

Reflections

This has been a wild year.

A really wild year.

Between my personal life, health issues, school, and the current state of  US politics, things are definitely  different from this time last year. Last New Year’s Day I was on vacation in Seattle and Vancouver, now I’m in my pajamas, ringing in the new year eating cereal.

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As I navigate this weird transitional period from being a child into being an adult, I have learned more about myself, and the world as a whole than I ever have before. I’ve realized my love of social justice and politics, I have become more passionate and outspoken about causes I care about, and  I am more open and comfortable with my sexuality. Things are definitely different.

This year has brought on more doctors visits, more testing, and even a trip to Cincinnati to visit the Children’s hospital there. Cincinnati was one of the worst experiences of my life, but I learned so much from it. I had thought my whole life I would go into medicine, but this experience really made me re-evaluate what I want. I also feel the need to self-advocate for my health more than ever before; I’m not a child anymore, I need to stop relying on my mom to speak for me.

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I’ve also learned that my biggest nightmares can come true, and I’ll still be okay. I was always afraid my health would force me to drop out of school, and it finally did. It was scary, and my future is unknown, but I know I’m going to be fine. It may not feel that way now, but things will change. My “biggest fears” don’t seem as scary now that I’m facing something I feared for so long.

With the election I learned some not so fun lessons. Sure, I knew racist, homophobic, and just generally bigoted people still existed (I live in Texas, hello!), but I never realized how much America was filled with so much hatred for one another. Being gay, this new government makes me scared for my future. Will I still be able to get married? Will I still be able to adopt kids? Will I be a victim of hate crime, like the people in the pulse shooting?  I hope 2017 is a rebuilding year for the states, and that Donald Trump doesn’t do any damage in these years to come. I sincerely hope he does a good job as president, but I’m expecting the worst. This year more than ever I’ve been vocal about my political opinions. I supported Hillary Clinton from the very beginning of her campaign. I got a Hillary shirt in November 2015, wore it on Election Day, and still continue to wear it, despite the ridicule I got at school from both students and teachers. She may not be perfect, but she taught me so much about being a strong woman and perseverance.

My January is filled with more doctors appointments and tests, but hopefully these will lead to the answers I’ve been looking for. I may be starting out my New Year in the same spot medically, but my oh my have I learned so much this year. I hope this time next year I’m healthier, happier, and have learned even more about life. What have you learned/ accomplished in 2016? What do you plan to accomplish in this new year?

Lots of Love and Happy New Year,

Alyssa

Chemistry and Crushes

I thought I would share something quiet personal today; something I have never told anyone else in full detail.

I had been questioning my sexuality a lot since spring semester of freshman year. On my first day of Sophomore year, in my first class, which happened to be chemistry, there was this girl. She went to my middle school, so I knew her name, and generally who she was friends with, but I had never talked to her. I’m going to name her Rose for the remainder of this blog post.

I sat down at my desk, and I had a clear view of her. She was beautiful. Her golden brown hair hit a couple of inches below her collar bone, and was oh so effortlessly thrown into a ponytail. I had never felt head over heels for someone like I way I felt for Rose. Seeing her talking and laughing with her best friend who happened to sit right beside her, was like watching my favorite movie. I didn’t know her, but I felt this connection to her, and this yearning to learn more about her.

It was pretty much from that first week of school on that I knew for sure I was gay. She was the reason I came out. In my ridiculous mind I wanted to tell my parents I was gay so I “wouldn’t have to lie if she asked me.” I had never talked to her, but here I was imagining this whole conversation of her asking me about  my sexuality.

One day a few weeks into school I saw her approaching my desk. She said she didn’t have time to finish her lab, and wondered if she could have my data. Rose could have anything she wanted as far as I was concerned. I let her copy my data down, and nervously apologized for my bad handwriting. When her and her friend said thank you, I squeaked out a “you’re welcome,” that sounded way too cheery.

I had previously heard Rose talking to her friend about hanging out with a girl, but she was disappointed that the girl had a girlfriend, so I knew she was gay. After our first interaction I never talked to her again, but kept seeing her in the halls, and we would lock eyes for a few seconds before both looking away. Six weeks into school she moved out of my pre-ap class and into a regular class. I was sad, but I knew she was “in my life” for a reason. I had the confidence to accept myself and come out all because I had major crush on this girl that didn’t even know I existed.

I’m grateful for her, even though she has no idea about any of this. I think it would be cool if I saw her one day and told her, but I’m not so sure I’d ever have the confidence to do that. I no longer have that huge crush on her, but I will forever carry the memories of my first “real crush.” Sure I had thought previously that I had crushes on boys, but looking back these “crushes” seem more like a desire for a friendship with them. I can also recognize now times when I crushed on girls when I was younger, but hadn’t realized exactly what I wanted out of the relationship. So as far as I am concerned, she was the first crush I had on a girl that I recognized right away, and knew what I wanted.

Sometimes you impact peoples lives, and you have no idea. I think that’s pretty cool. If you’re queer, telling me how you came to realize it, and if you you had an “aha” moment like I did.

Lots of Love,

Alyssa

Meet Me!

My name is Alyssa, and I am a seventeen year old, queer girl, who was born and raised in Texas. I have many passions including social justice, , feminism, LGBT culture, chronic illness awareness, and Christianity. My personality and interests are made up of things that typically “don’t go together”, like being Queer and being a Christian, and being progressive and living in the south. I wanted to start this blog to grow as a writer, and create a safe space for other young people in the LGBT & Spoonie communities.

 

My family and I love animals, with that being said we have two dogs, Charlie a 6 year old Lhasa Apso-Maltese mix, and Maggie a 2 year old “flashy fawn” Boxer. I also have a 4 year old, tabby cat named Sophie.

I’ve always lived in Texas, and even though it’s a very conservative state I like it here. It isn’t as bad as most people make it out to seem. You’ll find some blue scattered about all the red.

Some things I enjoy are binge watching Netflix shows, writing (but I mean, isn’t that a given?), and playing with all our pets. Lately I’ve been too into watching my favorite guilty pleasure show – Rupaul’s Drag Race. Being chronically ill means I can’t do a lot of the things that healthy people enjoy, but I try to find joy in the little things.

I hope this blog can bring someone a little bit of joy or open their eyes to viewing the world or a topic in a new way. Follow me along in my journey, as being Queerly Texan!

– Alyssa