Fifteen years ago, I started my first writing job. After working in retail since graduating college almost four years prior, my first experience in a real office environment was exciting. I was working in my major (English) and finally doing what I loved. It was then, when I created my first online email account, that I came up with the pseudonym Felix.
Felix was confident, outspoken, and not afraid of a fight. She sat in a big corner office, city lights blazing like diamonds in the window behind her desk (because of course she worked late). She was fierce in a red power suit (because of course it was the 90s). Black patent stilettos graced her feet, and her staff sat up when they heard those shoes clicking down the hall. Felix was everything that I was not but swore to myself that I would be one day.
Last year, Felix got tired of waiting and started to punch her way out.
After a 20-year relationship with a man, 10 years of marriage and two children, I took the first step toward embracing something I could no longer deny… that I was attracted to women and had been for a very long time. Understanding and accepting that was one of the most difficult things I ever had to do, but once I did, Felix had my back.
She wasn’t looking for anyone’s approval or permission, she simply was. And through her strength–strength that was always in me but I was too afraid to use for my own benefit–I gave myself permission to be.