2,901 miles

When I first started telling people I was dating Kylee, the question of how we are going to make this work was asked multiple times. With 2,901 miles between us, our relationship should not be the easiest one I have had, but somehow it is. We are young, but we are willing to work out the kinks and figure this out because having each other is better than not. Of course I would love to come home every night after work and be able to talk about our days, laugh, have dinner and watch television. At this time, it is not an option, but that is okay.

Every single day is a challenge, but it always gives me time to continue on with being Alanna. I am a person who does too much, but is always happy to do it. I currently work three jobs and go to school full time. Just because I am busy does not mean my heart should be empty. I always say that if Kylee lived here or I lived there, I would not be able to be the best girlfriend I can be right now because I barely have time for my friends at times. Aside from being one of the most intelligent people I know, Kylee is beautiful, funny, sentimental, loving, kind and caring. She deserves the best that someone can give her and that would not be me if she lived here while I am this busy. I could write a million pages on how much I hate the distance, but can write another million on why it is okay and on how the distance does not harm our relationship.

We miss each other all day, but lately I have found a love and appreciation for technology. I am able to talk to her from when she wakes up and until I go to sleep. I can send her endless selfies and we can video chat if we both have the time. The absolute best part about the distance is it allows me to travel to places I never been. I am able to see this whole, new beautiful world with her.

There’s a song that say, “You’re so worth all this torture,” and she really is. She is worth the heart ache and being alone. She is who I want to be with and I will continue to do the long distance relationship with her until I no longer have to because she is so worth all the torture.She is worth the plane tickets. She is worth it all to me.

 

“So, are you gay now?”

Take a second to think about someone you want, something you have been wanting for a long time. Now, picture the feeling you get when you finally get it. Are you excited, happy, elated? Now, whatever it is you have been wanting is not exactly what you expected, but it does not change how you feel. This is what it was like to find out the person I spent years falling for was not Marc, but instead Kylee. Now that I am dating a trans* girl, I am constantly asked whether or not I am gay. The answer is simple: no.

When I was 13 I met Marc and there was an instant connection. It was like a magnetic pull and neither of us could break it, but it is not like either of us tried to break it. Looking at him I knew that this was someone I wanted in my life for as long as possible. The friendship came so naturally to both of us. Even when he went home to California and came back a year later, all the emotions that were there a year prior remained and managed to grow over the course of the year of separation. The connection and feelings were intensifying without us even trying or talking for a year at a time.

All of these emotions came out of genuinely liking the person for who they are, what they stand for and all the things that make their eye glimmer when they discuss it. It was the fact that we could talk about books, drugs, music, who we were dating, school, life, goals or anything else with such ease. Falling in love with Marc was just the easiest thing I have ever done, but so is continuing to love Kylee. After years of giving excuses of why we could not possibly be together we are now trying and succeeding because it is what we both want and needed for so long.

Us being open about our relationship brings up the concreteness of my own sexuality. I spent many years in exclusive relationships with cisgender men. Now, I am dating a trans* woman, but this one relationship does not define my sexuality. I fell in love with Marc, but not because he was a male, but because I saw him as a person who could make me smile when it was the last thing I wanted to do and who continuously saw beyond my terrible acne and large rack. These parts of me are not the reason he wanted to be with me.

I told my mother, “I am generally attracted to men and masculinity as a whole. It just so happens that this guy I fell in love with is a girl and I just accept it because her happiness is what is important.” That is what it is. I want the person I love to love themselves and be happy when they look in the mirror. In a relationship, you build each other up, not tear each other down.

Each time I am asked if I am gay, my immediate thought is ‘do these people know and understand how sexuality works?’ I have always defended the fact that a person does not choose to be gay or straight. I did not wake up in the morning and decide to be a lesbian. I do not wake up every morning and decide that I love Kylee today. It was something I had no control over and I still don’t. When she told me she was trans* I could have said no to her, but that was be depriving myself of experiencing such joy and happiness that she brings to my life.

Am I gay? No, that implies being a homosexual, or being attracted to one gender. I am not attracted to one gender by any means. I am a woman who loves another woman and that is all. There might be a label you can place on me, but it is not your place to do so. It is not your job to define every aspect of my life, it is mine. I am not gay, a homosexual, a lesbian, a bisexual or any other title you want to throw at me. I am happy. I am loved. I am whatever the hell I want to be.