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I was unpacking the last two boxes last night and finding all kinds of things I had forgotten about. I discovered inside one of my boxes was a pack of photos I haven't looked at in several years. Probably at least 5 years. Included in the photos was a small stack of pictures of my very best friend from childhood - Katie. It will be 10 years since Katie died this August. When she died it was sudden, without warning, and it hit me hard. I had not experienced grief like that yet in my life. I was only 20. When she died I told my mom my biggest fear was that I would forget things, I would forget our stories. Mom's reply was that I would never forget how much I loved her. And she was right. Except that even to this day I remember so many of our misvhievous adventures. But mostly I just remember lots and lots of laughing. One of the pictures was taken a month before she died at Seattle's Pride festival. It's Katie, Brian, Brian's boyfriend, and me. (Brian has also since passed away from cancer) This was the first time Katie and I had ever been to Pride and it was a huge deal for us. I think it was one of the most fun days we had in a long time. Katie was the world's biggest tomboy as children (almost exclusively mistaken for a boy) and came out right about high school graduation time. It was no huge shocker, it was almost more laughable that she had to say it to me out loud. It was more of a "WELL DUH" moment. I think what was more shocking to her that I was also questioning my own sexuality at that time too. I was starting college and it was becoming more and more apparent to me that men were just...not quite as exciting as women. I remember telling her and two other (who also came screaming out of the closet that year) childhood friends that given the choice between a man and a woman the woman is always going to be more exciting and interesting to me. As the years have passed I've settled more into accepting that I'm just about 90% lesbian with the remaining 10% hetero so that nobody can call me a liar when I find any particular man attractive.

So yes, Pride was a big day for both of us. Brian too I think. Until then we had been spending more and more time on Capitol Hill and getting to know the culture and the scene. So on that day it was almost overwhelming to see so many queer people in one place. But mostly I think it was the first time the two of us felt like we weren't total freaks. There was this whole group of people that included plenty of dorky queers.

Pride is coming up again in two months and for the first time I'm living right in the middle of it. I haven't been in two years, which I feel a little bad about. Also, pride's in jeapordy these days so I feel like I have a duty to support it. I'm on the volunteer list so I'm sure I'll be passing out condoms or wearing some dorky "staff" t-shirt directing people where to go. We'll see.

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ladibug21

March 2009

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