“Art enables my inner creativity and, as a matter of fact, it helps me understand the world better and elevate my perspective. I remember painting used to be my favourite hobby and it sounds funny as I say that I used to paint on the walls of my house. The walls used to be my canvas and I enjoyed painting the most and my parents never discouraged me. Instead, they found a personal tutor for me so that I could learn everything from basics to techniques by experimenting with different colours and methods. By 9th standard, I started taking it to another level by painting on actual canvas and this continued till junior college. Mostly my paintings contained hidden elements of the rainbow and this indicated pride and it was one of the platforms where I felt free to express myself, the changes I was going through as a person.
At the same time, when I was in 6th grade, I came across an amazing book titled Diary of a young girl by Annie Frank and I was inspired and motivated to a stage where I started maintaining a personal diary and journaled everything happening in my life. From day-to-day activities, to happy moments and sad ones, journaling helped me a lot. This made me participate in different competitions, like article and poetry writing. I pursued English literature in my major and it was mandatory for us to do the writing part for the academics and my classmates too were invested in poetry writing. So, that kind of paved the way to my poetry skills and gave me confidence to do even better. Some of my poems were published in the university’s magazine and were titled “I am a Girl and Chrysalis.” On the bright side, poetry gave me freedom to express my thoughts without being judged or frightened.
In 2017, I experienced some major changes and I noticed all the girls in my college were attracted to boys but I wasn’t. I was interested in women and I was not sure where I belonged. It took me a lot of inner conflict and years to accept myself and my sexuality. Poetry and painting sure played a crucial role in expressing my thoughts.
“Pride is for everyone and it should never mean having to live life in fear. In 2017, I realized some major changes happening and was not sure where I belong or if it was a phase like people say. Eventually, I was clear about what was going on and understood everything about being queer but it took a long time to accept. When I came out as a lesbian in 2021, I was in a fear of being judged. I used to worry about what my parents would say or react, etc. I faced unnecessary torments about my sexuality and cheap comments like “You don’t look like a lesbian, you are too feminine to be one” and the disgusted looks on their faces when they see me.
Although I didn’t come from an open-minded community, my friends and lecturers discussed everything openly because in English literature we had queer writers, and that kind of motivated me to accept myself in the first place and to come out to my parents. Being deeply loved gives you strength and courage and my partner was the sole reason that I came out confidently. She gave me the immense support I needed and no matter what she always has my back. It’s been 2 wonderful years of dating.
I met my partner on a dating app and we’ve been staying together in a live-in relationship happily since a year. She came out to her parents and everyone long before me. In my case, it was a bit different because the place where I was born and raised, it was not easy. All I want to say is, don’t force yourself to come out and no rush to do so because it is your journey. You choose your timing.”