The first friend I ever had was the son of our landscapers, his name was David. We were both 5 years old when we struck up a friendship. He was Mexican, he was kind and he was also gay or possibly trans. Looking back, I can see now that he was not masculine identifying because he enjoyed playing barbies with me and wearing women’s clothes. But at the time, he was just a person I cared for and had a lot in common with. To me, he was my friend and he was born different, which made him the perfect friend for me.
He died young of leukemia. I think about him a lot and wonder if we would still be friends today had he survived. And I also wonder why he had it so hard at such a young age. He didn’t deserve to die as a child.
In his short time here he did something great for me. He showed me that friends come in many different packages. He taught me to not see color or sexual preference as a reason for division, but a reason to unite. That imprint began very early for me and because of him my heart has been quite open to accepting all kinds.
I want to thank him for impacting me so positively. I want to honor his short life here and honor all LGBTQ lives. Thank you to all my friends who exercise patience with me while teaching me. You are broadening my understanding and empathy for everyone. 🙏🏼 🏳️🌈