As a teenager, I went to youth Bible study on Wednesdays, choir rehearsal on Fridays, and volunteered with the Children’s Ministry on Saturdays. My week, and my network of friends, revolved around social activities in church. We traveled from place to place because safe and loving adults cared to drive us from place to place. I think of people like my dad, Ms. Sonya, Ms. Burwell, Ms.
You would think that we, those of us belonging to the LGBTQ community of faith would be mourning you and conspiring towards how we can work to protect you and cherish you in our communities. However, the silence around your death, Chyna Gibson, is deafening.
I am very angry, and I am usually the consensus builder. The racial tension, violence, and the growing backlash to marriage equality and trans visibility makes the everyday life feels like a powder keg.
There needs to be some kind of release from all the pain, anger, suffering and injustice.
I realized how much I hated myself the day I admitted to myself that I’m trans. I’d never noticed before then the nauseated feeling in my stomach each time I looked in a mirror, or how I never could take compliment without some type of rebuttal, or how much I clamored for attention while looking for the exit at the same time.
Each morning, the first time I rise the sky is still inky blue and outside still smells like night time. I brush my teeth and sit in my meditation corner. I pray in love for peace and preparation. I ask our Creator that if lives must be sacrificed for change, that this change is forever and we never have to repeat this moment in history.
I am always worried to the point of nail-biting when my spouse leaves in the morning for Boston Medical Center if she’ll return home to me, because she’s always stopped by the Cambridge or Boston police. They don’t see Dr. Thea James.
On July 8th, I wanted to scream at a little kid on the subway. Usually, I love kids. I have been babysitting since I was ten years old. My first job out of college was as a youth leader. I currently spend my days either working with children or planning programs so that I can work with children. I don’t even mind riding an airplane with a crying baby.
Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be frightened, and do not be dismayed, for the Lord your God is with you wherever you go. Joshua 1:9
This week we stepped into a period of mourning, overwhelmed by a string of deaths that remind us again that we live in a world of injustice and sorrow.
When I was in the fourth grade, I saw a video of Martin Luther King, Jr. delivering his “I Have a Dream” speech for the first time. As I was nine and we were watching it on a blurry box TV, I didn’t pay much attention to it. That was unfortunate because, as an adult, I see that so much of that speech dealt with the circumstances I should’ve been living in.