Ed Note: This is a repost from last year as this story is so relatable to those who have fears of coming out of their closets. Please take time to read and share us your thoughts. Moreover, we have an ongoing contest for Mothers' Day at this link--> https://www.istorya.net/forums/family...l#post14861779
Awesome prizes await for those who join. Thanks!
What is the loneliest place on earth?
It’s the closet.
It might be a laughing stock to some but coming out of it is a combination of the safest place you could be—where no one can see you for who you really are; it is also the loneliest as you are the only one there, with no one to understand, with every bit of fear dripping out your system, forever on the verge of someone finding out, yearning for acceptance, yearning for someone’s hand to reach out and say, “You do not belong there. Come out and I will take care of you”.
So this is my story. Actually, this is the story of both my mom and I and how she shattered my fantasies and my closet.
Growing up, I have written my mother countless of letters to tell her how much I love her, and that the world is so much brighter just because she is my mom. Everything that she does brings a smile to my heart. I could say that she is my best friend. I have talked to her about everything, except this one secret that I’ve been keeping from her for years—the fact that her son is gay.
Ever since I decided that it’s time for me to tell her, I’ve had sleepless nights. I don’t know how my mom would react. Would she be angry? Disappointed? Sad? I have fantasies of her turning her back to me and the mere thought of it pains me. Should she blame herself, claiming she has failed as a mom? I don’t want her to think that. She has never failed as a mother for she is the most amazing and most loving woman I know. However, I want her to understand that being gay was not something I just chose, nor was it something that I just “turned” into. It’s just the way that I am.
It has taken me so many years to come to terms with myself that I am gay. I cannot expect that she will accept it right away. However, over the years that I have battled with myself, I have come to accept myself eventually and I am happy with who I am. I guess, that bravery to accept myself came from her as she has accepted me wholeheartedly before.
But why does it still scare me so?
Maybe because it hurts me that I’d be causing her any kind of pain that I don’t want her to be upset with my coming out. Perhaps, she would think that it would have been better that she didn’t know. However I felt that hiding my sexual orientation from her may create an invisible barrier between us, something that I have prevented from happening ever since. I want to be honest. I want to talk to her about everything like we used to—like the excitement of dating someone new, or going through the pains when things do not work out.
There are times that I have spent several nights crying myself to sleep because of a broken heart, alone and lonely. I wanted to call to her for support but I was so afraid that I could lose that love that she has always unconditionally given to me.
So with all of my strength, I sent her a letter.
And I waited for her to storm out of the room and cast me away. I braced myself.
But my amazing mom hugged me and shattered all my fantasies of her rejecting me. She has shown me that facing reality is so much better than hiding in the closet of lies.
And she just hugged me and said, “You are my son. I should know. I am just waiting for you to tell me…”
For her, it might not be so dramatic, but for me, it could have been. It’s like the walls and my closet just shattered and that amazing feeling of being accepted for all that you are has enveloped me. From that moment on, I could feel that God has an enormous army of angels who is tasked just to spread love. He gives one to us in the form of mothers. My mother’s acceptance felt like me seeing her in a halo and spreading her wings, enveloping me with her love.
As of this moment, my Mom and I are still best friends. Sometimes, she overdoes it—like finding guys for me and forcing me to date and all. She’s relishing the fact that she has a gay son. I couldn’t imagine now had I hesitated or stopped myself from telling her. I would have forever been in the darkness. Being gay is not something to be ashamed of nor does it diminish your being a human being. As long as there is someone there who believes in you, there is always freedom from the closet.
This article belongs to a series of articles for our Mothers' Day special.