As this bakes in my tiny oven, I don my one and only purple shirt (bought just for this day) and sit down to write about colors, orientations, and love.
Color coding is the rule of the day. The American map is coded as red and blue, while talk show hosts seem to see the world only in black and white. Girls wear pink. Homosexuals have their own color too--purple. My own favorite color--gray--is sadly neglected, expect perhaps on the Kindle with its 16 shades of gray.
In the end, we are all gray. 16 shades of gray, perhaps, but still gray. Straight or not, donkey or elephant, male or female, we are all gray.
Today is International Coming Out Day. I had intended to write a post supporting my gay brothers and sisters or perhaps a post excoriating those who attack homosexuals. But the thoughts that came to me as I walked my son to kindergarten and then mixed up a batch of walnut biscotti in my kitchen were of a different nature.
I have long suspected that I am bisexual. This is far from being a confession that I have struggled painfully with my sexual orientation. As a young adult, I suspected that absolutely everyone was bisexual and just hiding it. That is, I thought my experience was normative.
Time or rather several conversations with people spread out over time has shown me that my experience is not normative. But whose is? I still shy away from the label "bisexual" because it seems to imply sexual attraction to all people without distinction. Sexual attraction, important as it may be, is not so much the point to me.
I remember the most intense, painful, and joyful experiences of love that I have ever had. One was with with a women. One was with a man. Oddly, I did not feel overwhelming sexual desire in either case. The attraction was profoundly emotional. So what does that make me? I think it just makes me--me.
My attempts at self-definition have been utter failures. The label box at the bottom of this post is empty. The label box of my life is also rather empty. Just when I thought I was a conservative, I became a liberal, but just when I was sure I was a liberal, Andrew Sullivan (the veritable British-American, Catholic, conservative, pro-Obama, gay blogger) convinced me I might be conservative.
I am bi-lingual now and a permanent resident of South Korea. Well, not bi-lingual. I speak or read (or spoke or read) several languages and I keep both learning and forgetting more languages even as Korean and English dominate my brain.
I am a Christian, yes. Protestant--maybe not. Even self-defining as a Christian is not entirely helpful. Many who are Christians would not accept my self-definition. Many who are not Christians misunderstand it. Nothing to be done but to keep following Jesus.