If you would have asked me as a junior in high school what I “identified as”, I would have said I was a pansexual White femme cisgender middle class blonde person that hated conservatives, had an opinion for everything, and also judged all the people at my school that smoked pot and played the clarinet badly (with soooo many more words).

If you would have asked me this time last year “Who I was”, I would have said I was a bisexual, Caucasian, Feminist, service-oriented person who loved God but also thought a lot of people who claimed to know Jesus were hypocrites.

If you would have asked me when I was 6 what I wanted to be “when I grew up”, I would have said “a Haley.” I have a picture of me at kindergarten graduation with the occupation of “Live in Paradise” (vs. my twin sister’s Artist designation; she studies computer animation now) because I refused to make up my mind. I don’t know if I said anything, but they couldn’t make me choose. I also almost got my family thrown out of Disneyworld later that year by security guards because I was clinging to Tiger’s tail when I found out he was a fake and I was too startled to stop.

Yeah, that sounds about right to me.

I wasn’t ever the girl to keep big secrets, and you can interpret that however you’d like when it comes to age appropriate Christmas truths, let alone the sex education scandals of 6th grade.

These days, I leave it at “Christian”. If you want to know my beliefs on anything else, have the balls to ask me, or please, say nothing. I am not a bigot, I believe in equal rights and kindness for all people, and that comes from the experiences of me and my family, it doesn’t come from dragging my faith into what defines discrimination.

I believe in goodness, and I have had certain personal experiences that have helped me define what that looks like in practice. I know what kindness is, and in terms of living your life, I don’t care if you smoke crack or bitterness, there’s not all that much of a difference.

Thing is, a lot of people that fascinate me are on either side of all those spectrums. Seriously. And nobody says hi to the lady downtown playing the electrical wire radio boxthing for change with an adorable blind collie so she can pay for some food for him, regardless of anything we’d all like to claim. I may not have much going for me, but at least I know that she’s not an alien, like her appearance may “lead you” to believe. She let me play the wire, and guess what? It was cool. Second best thing next to the guy with the hemp Bible and the Honk for Hemp sign he holds (learn something new about the Bible every day, even if it’s just about the paper). That guy is a classy dude. Third runner up to the awesome homies would be all of the crazy bamf (bad @$$ m****** fworder) art that I grew up inside. You could probably steep it out of me like the cold press I don’t drink. But then again, neither does the lady with the wire; she can’t afford to.

I don’t have an iPhone, I don’t drink coffee, I don’t sit with my legs crossed, and honestly, I don’t know whose stereotype I’m quoting there; for whatever reason, people who drink coffee are Satan no matter where you go. I dick around way too much to fit in any bodies convenient stereotype, and honestly, how cool is that??

I’m just saying, I’m living my life and I’m happy. I don’t prefer to label much; I don’t even wear branded t-shirts (that part of the liberal stigma I’ll keep). I still do. But it’s a choice I try to live without.

But I will wear a cross, because I believe in it. Mine has dried flowers inside it, it’s clear with a silver back and a little red dried rose inside that I have used to explain how Jesus was crucified in very PG ways to kiddos I ran into volunteering who also are just as cool and can definitely understand the gospel, NO MATTER HOW OLD  they are. That was just me rambling into something on the fly and going with it; just ask my friend Chris from Church. I was gonna go to her house to worry and ruminate aloud, instead I got to play wax museum. I think we all won on that one.

Apart from that, I don’t know. But I’m cool with it.

If anyone wants to know, pick a topic; I’ll be cool with it. I’ve done it before (IN A CHURCH)!!

But seriously, does it matter?

I hope not. That’s where I’m hedging my bets: with the Lady with the Wire and the Hemp Bible Guy. Because I believe Jesus would do that; and more importantly if we’re talking today and seeing God in all people, they are really, really cool.


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I am a second-grade teacher and pastor-to-be who loves people. I spend my weekends with friends or wandering the museums of DC alone and with a journal, trying to put words on the places of the soul that still feel wordless. I spent most of my days at school trying to learn patience through my students and running on sheer nerdy passion. I follow Jesus Christ, and savor that as my most important identity--that I am a child of God, as are infinite others, regardless of their other identities. Christ is my one thing.

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