Things my parents said when I was in kindergarten:
“Just be yourself and you’ll make friends.”
“Don’t let those bullies get to you.”
“Don’t ever change for anyone.”
“I’m so proud of you!”
But now, I don’t hear those words from anyone.
See, when they told me those things,
I was smart.
I was beautiful.
I was normal.
Somewhere along the road, I lost my ability to conform.
I can no longer blend in.
And I refuse to be something I’m not.
Somehow, being different has made me lose all of those things I was as a child.
I am no longer smart, because of the religion I chose to follow.
I am no longer beautiful because of my sexuality.
I am no longer normal because I just don‘t fit in.
Now, all I hear is:
“Why don’t you dye your hair a normal color?”
“Just try to blend in and you won‘t be bullied.”
“Why won‘t you just eat meat and go to church?”
“Why are you so weird?”
Well fuck you.
Don’t scoff at the term “weird” as if it’s an insult.
Don’t talk about me when I leave the room and you think I can‘t hear.
Don’t spit names at me as if they’re acid and you want me to burn.
You cannot burn me.
I’m already burning.
I am a raging fire.
I am a dazzling star.
I am the sun.
And nothing you do will dull my blaze.
Because I am smart.
I am beautiful.
I am exactly who I want to be.