A group of us met together on the second floor of the coffee shop where I have been going to hide lately, and we did anything but. Hide, I mean. There were nine of us, perched in mismatched chairs and overstuffed sofas, gathered together just to be in the presence of other people who are trying to figure out the same kinds of things… like how to put to rest the embedded story that God is not in any of this… how to have “that conversation” with roommates and with family… how to remember that laughter is not only a defense mechanism. I can’t even quite explain what it felt like to be surrounded by people who knew about my sexuality, and not to have to go through that unbelievably painful moment where I come out to someone, and then somehow find myself profoundly grateful if they indicate that they are still going to recognize my humanity. Here, the only coming out that had to take place was when one of the girls came out as a Republican. (and yes, we still recognized her humanity 😉 ….)

We filled that little room with our stories and our laughter, to the point that I began to feel bad for the other people in that room. Like maybe I should be apologizing to them for the fact that they might not have come there on a Sunday afternoon, wanting to hear a bunch of gay and lesbian Christians talk about all the ways the world has surprised them, with its pain and with its beauty. But then I made an effort to uncurl myself from the fetal position I had assumed on the couch, and I sat up a little straighter and thought to myself… maybe it will be important for them to hear us finding our voices and claiming this small space in this world. And if it wasn’t important for them, then at least I am absolutely certain that it was for us.

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