First of all I am “spirit” in a body that we call human.  I am spirit before anything else.  I am here to learn, to change, and to develop.  Everything that we humans do is directly as a result of spirit evolving or spirit refusing to evolve.

 As a child I was very aware that I heard and saw things that others around me could not.  I was very clear to me that we were all spirit.  Nothing different about us except the ways we expressed ourselves….in looks, language, food, etc.  What I also learned as a child is that others forced their identity entrapments on me and treated me accordingly.  I wasn’t allowed to eat in restaurants, use public facilities or to be exposed to a system of quality education.  I was limited in my entire environment by being labeled/identified as a skin color.  No matter what I did or said, I could not escape the identity and what it meant to those that used this identity to hurt people. No matter how I look, I have never stopped being spirit in a body.  I am forced to wear the mantle of what skin color means to others because of their non-acceptance of who we all are – and how we are all connected.  By the same token, I gladly accept the mantle of goodness and all things given me under the mantle of being a spirit in the body that is identified as black.  It is a part of who I am.  And its good.

     Moving on to being a female:

I grew up in a chauvinistic household, a chauvinistic society, and a chauvinistic world.  Even though I knew I was spirit in a body…the divinity of who I am was being ripped from me daily.  Having to deal with color issues was only one mantle of my identity.  Having to deal with gender issues became another.  It did not matter what I said or did, people were only able to see me through their prism of what being female meant to them.  Its hard being a child that is meant for so much more and being constantly reminded that you’re actually nothing to the world at large. I was forced to wear their oppressive mantle/identity of being female, even though what their eyes saw was wrong.  On the other hand the body I chose to be born in is that of a female.  Everything good underneath the mantle/identity of female is what I hold dear.  It too is a part of who I am.  And its good.

     More on being a lesbian:

As my spirit reached out to learn new things and experience what brings me closer to being whole; I again was trapped behind a brick wall.  I’ve always thought women were extra special.  Most humans do if they have loving/safe mothers.  As my love for women grew to include the sexual, I was forced yet again to wear someone else’s mantle/identity of what that word means.  I was put in a horrible little perverse box that rendered any self-respect impossible.  It didn’t matter what I said or did, people only saw me as that ugly little box.  Who I was as a lesbian never matched who they said I was.  I was again forced to wear their little mantle because that’s all they can see.  As a woman who identifies with all the good things about being a lesbian, i.e. I love women; I accept the mantle/identity of being a lesbian.  It is a part of who I am.  And its good.

     My real identity has never changed.  I still view myself as spirit in a body.  Even though I have been tremendously scarred by all the negative mantles. I still manage to hold on to the one thing that is true.  I am spirit.  This spirit in a body is no different from any of the other spirits that chose to be born in human bodies.  We are all expressions of that.  Everything is an expression of spirit.  Our mantles are our colorings but are not our entirety.