Why would I write about my life? I’m sitting here waiting for students to ask questions and starting an autobiography when I haven’t really done much of note. I’m proficient in a field about which I don’t really care, waiting for news of whether I’ve been accepted into doctoral programs that might give me a means to be more of myself. I married a man who decided for religious reasons not to be gay. He says it’s a matter of design. He’s a great guy and we love each other to pieces. We just never have sex. That’s not all on him, though. I wasn’t touched much after infancy, I have physical issues, and I was so indoctrinated in the belief that sex was bad that I just couldn’t turn the switch on when I came of age.
I don’t write this to be depressing, though. Having started in an alt-right world, moved to the liberal Pacific Northwest, curled up at a friend’s feet in an emotional breakdown and questioned everything I’ve ever believed, I’ve done a lot of thinking. I think I have a few things to say, and if no one ever sees fit to read them, that’s none of my business.
By all accounts I really didn’t want to come into this world. My husband says that everyone would have a better understanding of me if they thought of me as an alien visiting earth. I arrived three weeks late after 36 hours of labor and did nothing but cry for the first six months I was here. My grandmother refused to come to the hospital because she was convinced my mother was going to die, and when she finally arrived she went to pick out her grandchild from the plastic tub line-up. She’d always dreamed that I’d have dark hair like my dad and be the kind of girl who’d want to wear patent-leather shoes from birth. Poor thing. My Mom couldn’t get me into a pair of tights after the age of two and when I was a little older I was never happier than when I was wearing my indestructible, plaid, polyester pants and a random t-shirt. And I didn’t get the dark hair. I didn’t even get my mom’s nice auburn. Mouse brown, which is why I color it purple. Aliens would totally groove with purple hair, and hell yeah, they are out there.
So here’s a window into the life of a middle-aged, purple-haired, intellectual artist who’s had a checkered past of a different sort than most. Think middle American good girl with a fantastic imagination, a questioning mind and the inability to be inauthentic even when it meant she didn’t fit in anywhere. Ever. Think alien.