Coming Home to My Sexuality Was the Gift That Saved Me

I am Tremaine. I am no one else.

Photo of the author enhanced with Comica app. Photo Credit: Tremaine L. Loadholt

I believe, as human beings, we can be almost anything outside of society’s perfect little boxes for us, but when we’ve ascertained who we actually are, this discovery can be lifesaving. I say this so you are aware, like many LGBTQ living and breathing individuals, I struggled with coming out and staying inside the closet. It wasn’t until three years ago, I suddenly felt safe saying to my family and friends who were not in the know, “I am bisexual.”

At age thirty-eight, this was my celebration. It was my tea-time, so to speak, and like it or not, I was ready to take my seat at the table just as I am, and nothing more. Coming home to me was a gift that kept me alive. It was a gift that handed me the opportunity to be a voice to and for others who have the same struggle.

I walked through the door and never looked back.


I am who I was created to be.

There isn’t a hair on my head that doesn’t define me. I have black, sandy red, and gray strands assembling themselves in order and streaking in just the way they are meant to do. I have laugh and frown lines and crow’s feet and extra weight settling around my middle, but I have grown to appreciate all these things.

They show I have lived. They display I also have more of that same living to do.

Before, when it was easier/safer to remain quiet about who I am, there was always a nagging, unsatisfied feeling. I felt both trapped and gutted at the same time. Trapped because I come from a long line of devout Christians on my father’s side. Gutted because there was a person inside me who was dying just a little each day and needed to be set free. Every single day, I had to connect with both sides and silence whichever one became louder than the other.

I assure you, this is no way to live.

What saved me after coming out was the love I continued to receive from my father (who is an Episcopalian elder/preacher, by the way), siblings, cousins, friends, and my mom. Many had already known without me uttering a word, especially my mom.

I hadn’t known, in her past, she was fighting battles on my behalf with her own family about their “image of me” regarding my sexuality. I hadn’t known she was practically saying to them, “My child’s sexuality is none of your business. If she’s happy, this is all that matters to me.” With a few expletives and hands thrown into the mix as well — because my mom has always been a person unafraid to physically get down if she has to.

I’m grateful for my tribe. They are the reason it has been easier to breathe being fully who I am. I cannot be anyone else. Not anymore.


Home is where a breath of fresh air is.

I have learned, on my journey, this body is my tower. If I keep it well-oiled, fueled, and maintained, it will continue to house me securely. I am home in this body. I am loved in this body. I am one with this body.

I recall the moment I first knew I was “different” from my playmates — I was eight years old. I knew what made little girls different from little boys regarding gender specificity, and I knew I liked both boys and girls. I knew I couldn’t choose. I also knew, in the eyes of the adults who raised me, I shouldn’t say anything about my discovery.

It had been frowned upon and preached about as the damning ways in which God could thwart me.

This confused me — if God created me and all things created by God are “good,” then why wasn’t I . . . good? Why would God oppose me? I was not the type of child to challenge my elders, so I snuck around to do the things I wanted to do and did a substantial amount of “sneaking” well into my early 30s.

Now, there is no need to sit the people I choose to entertain intimately or in a loving and consenting adult relationship on the sideline. I can play alongside them in the game of life. Coming home to my sexuality gave me the fresh air I should have been breathing decades ago.


When you ask me who I am, I will tell you.

The one thing I carry with me since I came out to my all-knowing mother is her phrase, “If anyone asks you if you’re bisexual, you better damn well tell them you are.” And I do. I stick my chest out a bit, breathe in a few puffs of air, and I say who I am — proudly.

Does it get any easier? Truthfully, yes. The fear is always there in the pit of my belly because being bisexual still has an air of taboo about it, but I don’t deny it. And I don’t change the subject anymore.

Being at home with one’s sexuality and comfortable in the skin I drag around is a place I have longed to be for years. It is the gift that saved me. I am thankful coming home to myself took place before my dying days.

There are so many of us who hold on to our “secrets” until the grave slips itself around our decaying bodies.

I am here. This is who I am. You won’t get anyone else.


Originally published in Prism & Pen via Medium.

It’s Okay to Admit You’re Wrong

A Senryu, 3 Parts

previous testing
done for patient somewhere else
she insists we’re wrong

I search the system
co-worker reviews it too
we find no records

patient dismisses
the mistake’s made on her part
ends the call upset


I will be the first to admit I’m wrong when I am wrong. I cannot tell you the number of patients with whom I speak on a daily basis who are adamant about having their radiological services rendered with us when in actuality, those services have been with another entity. It’s okay to admit you’re wrong, especially if you go to multiple places to have your medical needs met. It’s really okay. My co-worker and I handled the issue accordingly. In the end, the patient was informed of where she had her imaging done based on her description of the location and advised to reach out to them for her medical recordsbut she really just couldn’t believe she was wrong.

Behold the Love of A Big Sister

A free verse poem

My oldest niece Tierney and my youngest nephew, Thyrie. Big sister and baby brother.

I can relate . . .
the happiness swimming across
her face is the same way I
reacted to my first brother
and my last brother and
then finally, my sister.
for the eldest, it never gets old.

there’s always enough love
left for another — always.

I focus on her smile,
simple yet wholesome.
anyone can tell there is
a sense of pride — a sense of
absolute joy as she holds
her baby brother in her arms.

he is comfortable — at ease.
it’s as if he knows, in her care,
he is safe.
the two of them — instantly
bonded, forever.
tears escape my eyes
in this moment of
admiration.

I am putty
for the two of them — stuck
to the love they display,
comforted by it.
this is an aunt’s safe space,
my world of wonder.

I could live here forever.
please don’t make me leave.

behold the love of a
big sister as she cradles
her youngest sibling . . .
does it touch you?
does it strengthen you?
can you relate too?

beauty manifests in various
forms — small packages of
simple photographs become
remnants of peace.
they are keepsakes to
reach for when the
rough seas pull us in.

I’m grateful for them.
I can tell, she is too.

Special thanks to my brother, TJ, for permission to use the above photograph of my oldest niece Tierney, and my youngest nephew, Thyrie. This poem was originally published via Medium.