I have had an amazing week with connecting with friends/loved ones from all of my years here in LA, to new friends/colleagues at a conference this week. It truly has been an emotional rollercoaster. On top of all of that, the election was this week.
I was scared.
I was really freaked out.
I was in California, and Melissa was in Illinois.
A Presidential candidate was threatening to remove our rights if he was elected. Not only as a member of the LGBTQ community, but as a woman.
I didn’t realize how much this was affecting me until I saw that President Obama was re-elected. I was in the middle of our dinner social for our conference, and when I stepped outside, I saw that people were watching the results in the bar. I walked in, and I saw that yes, President Obama was re-elected. Instantly, I started to feel the tears trickling down the sides of my eyes down my face. A lump in my throat emerged, and I knew I needed to get out of there fast.
Shit. I was in the middle of a professional conference, and this was not the way to present myself.
I started walking away from the crowd. I didn’t automatically go to my room, but went back into the dining area and I saw some of the women who I connected with earlier that day. I tried to calm myself down and walked in smiling.
"Did you hear"? I think I said. Now I’m not sure who said it first.
"Obama was re-elected" and I started to get all choked up again. I kept saying, sorry, sorry, sorry.
"I was really scared".
Again, it wasn’t until those moments that all of these feelings about it that I tried to push out of my head all day came flooding back. I started to cry. I apologized. I kept apologizing and they told me I didn’t have to.
They were amazing. We had a whole conversation about the election and how even though Obama wasn’t necessarily their favorite, they (most of them :) ) were happy about the results.
We are still not in the clear. Right now, Melissa and I still aren’t recognized legally in most of our country. It’s been moving forward. I’m ok with the pace (well not totally), but this issue is one of many that is plaguing our country right now. (Obviously, Hurricane Sandy is top on my mind). I’m just happy that for now, for this day, I can take a breath, and just be.