It Gets Better…

Today is National Coming Out Day. Though I identify as heterosexual, I have many beloved friends and respected colleagues that identify under the LGBT moniker. I use today as a reminder to be a light to everyone, no matter their race, gender, orientation, or socioeconomic status.

I don’t know how it feels to be bullied for being gay, but I do remember how it feels to be unhappy in high school. I was geek before it was chic. I was nerd long before Big Bang Theory made the mainstream. I felt awkward for liking school and weird for being smart. Don’t get me wrong, I wasn’t perfect or blameless: I pushed people away who tried to help and set up defense mechanisms to avoid getting hurt. I hurt other people’s feelings, too. It took me years of healing and forgiveness to accept myself for who I was/am, and more time to embrace my life and accept others for who they were, too.

If there is anything I could tell my 15-year-old self, it would be, “It gets better.” Dan Savage started the It Gets Better project about a year ago, and I can find no better phrase to encourage the downtrodden than that hopeful expression of future joy. If anyone had told me that I would find extravagant happiness with the man I am married to, I wouldn’t have been so upset that I didn’t have a boyfriend when I was 16. If anyone could have told my young self that my career would exceed my wildest dreams for myself, I wouldn’t have always felt so awkward in my own skin.

I am a teacher, because I see a mission towards my students. If I can help them find their way in life, then I have not lived in vain. If I can ease the suffering, even just a little, then I can help them guide themselves into bountiful, blessed life. As, an adult, reflecting on life past, present, and future, I can honestly say, IT GETS BETTER. Really.




Filed under Friendship, Outlook

4 responses to “It Gets Better…

  1. RaeAnn

    I really like this post Bonnie. Though I wondered sometimes what you really thought about and how you felt in high school, you always seemed like you were happy with who you were. I always wondered how you had it so together. I guess it really shows that no matter how much a person might look like they have it all together on the outside, on the inside it could be totally different. I’m glad you have found happiness in your husband.

    Thanks for being my friend in high school. I miss our times together.
    Rachel (RaeAnn) Stuivenga

  2. gaby dormus

    awww i love this bonnie, its true if i could tell my 15 year old self its okay not to have 10 boyfriends and my husband (now) is on his way I would not be worried about dating or guys liking me!

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