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Lately Lesbian

Lately Lesbian

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Lately Lesbian

282 Seiten
4 Stunden
Dec 18, 2018


Good Southern girls follow the rules and walk down predictable paths. Jenna predictably married Paul and believed in happily ever after. Although Jenna played by all the rules, she had no idea the tragic turns that her life would take. She needed the support of her husband, his sympathetic shoulder to cry on, and strong arms to hold her, but he cast an absentee ballot most of the time. Then out of the blue, Jenna crossed paths with a young woman and her life changed in ways that she never could have imagined. For too long Jenna drifted through life searching for answers to understand her desires and uncover her truths. Denial of Jenna's attraction and longing for the woman reigned supreme until one phone call changed everything.
Dec 18, 2018

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Lately Lesbian - J.D. Simmons



As I sit here writing this preface and getting close to finishing my book, I’m still not completely comfortable with the idea of telling my story. By nature, I’m a very outgoing person, but I also have a very private side to my personality. When I began this book seven years ago, I did so at the urging of my sister, several long-time friends and my partner. Over the years, they have asked over and over again about whether or not I was going to tell my story and they kept after me to get the job done. At that time, my marriage of 33 years had just ended and I was at a monumental crossroad. My personal life was in great turmoil. I began journaling in an effort to document the events that were rapidly unfolding in my life. My journal was a way to pour out my emotions and try to make sense of everything that was happening to me. In the process of writing, I realized that I would have forgotten so many meaningful details if I had not jotted them down.

My story is a love story like so many others and unlike so many others. At the time that I started writing this book, I had no idea in what ways my life would change, how the events would unfold, the impact that my actions would have upon my friends and family, and where I would end up.

Although my book is my true story, I have changed the names of the characters for obvious reasons. I will walk you down the path of my life and the events leading up to my marriage-ending affair. You will learn the intimate details of my secret desires and worst fears. You will feel the exhilaration and hope of a new and soulful love. You will be saddened by my huge mistakes and the impact that they had on my relationships with my children and family. I hope my story will evoke many emotions and that you will laugh, cry, sympathize, empathize, identify, find hope, let loose of prejudice and judgment, and enjoy!

I believe in the value of my story and its relevance for many people. If you are in a marriage where you are not appreciated, loved, honored, and cherished, I urge you to read this book because you deserve better. If you have ever suffered the heartbreaking loss of a child, my story of loss and redemption may give you hope that life holds the promise of a new found happiness. If you know of someone who is a homosexual and you do not accept them or they do not accept themselves, I ask you to read this book with an open mind, give them a copy, and together consider next steps in reconciliation. If you have strong feelings of attraction for a member of the same sex, but have always been afraid to act upon your feelings because of shame or society’s mores, my story may give you courage to begin a walk down your authentic path. If you are middle-aged or older and believe that your life is over and that you will never again find a wonderful, loving partner, I want you to read my story and hold onto the hope of finding true love. If you believe that homosexuality is a choice and not determined at birth or in the womb, I want you to consider the brain research from the past and present that help us better understand the beautiful differences in all of us.

Ultimately my number one goal for writing this book is to help others. When I was encouraged by people in my life that love me, know me, and accept me, warts and all, they stated they believed my story would be helpful, encouraging, and reassuring to others. Over the years, though, I have been surprised by the random occurrence of people that had no deep personal connection to me but have encouraged me to tell my story. Recently, I traveled to Europe for the first time, and while out with friends one evening, I spoke casually with a young man. While talking and with little knowledge of the details of my life, he said, quite out of the blue, You have to write a book. I was shocked and thought to myself, There you go, another person urging you to finish the arduous task. I have often wondered if, through the years, I‘m getting a nudging finger from God to move forward with this project. Hope it all meets his approval.

We live in an amazing time in which technology can benefit us in so many ways. Part of my purpose in writing this book was to understand myself more fully. My questions were deeply personal and private and they were related to my sexuality. I reviewed research in hopes of finding answers to some of the questions that I had struggled with for many years. I have always thought of myself as a logical and reasonable person. Surely in the 21st century, there should be mounds of research related to sexuality, sexual attraction, and sexual identification. I’ve always heard that the real sexual organ is the brain. I wanted to know and understand if science would support the theory that the brain is indeed the master sex organ. Sure enough, once I began researching, I found a massive amount of research related to sexuality. In this age, when scientists have the ability to do brain scans and sophisticated tests, there is crucial evidence which points out specifically, by looking at brain structures, the differences in homosexual vs. heterosexual brains. I’ve included a small amount of the brain research and findings in my book which support the case that whether we are heterosexual or homosexual it is probable the determination is made during embryonic development.

I want to express my heartfelt appreciation to all the people that encouraged me to tell my story—especially my partner, my sister, and many friends. I believe that I never would have written this book without your selfless encouragement and belief in me. To all my readers, thank you for taking the time to read my book and I hope my story helps you, enlightens you, or speaks to your heart. You are entitled to be loved, respected, and to live life as your true self! Happy reading!

Chapter 1

In a universe of ambiguity, this kind of certainty comes only once, and never again, no matter how many lifetimes you have.

–Robert James Waller

In the summer of 1995, the darkened theater provided a cool oasis in contrast to the summer heat outside. For the next few hours, I welcomed a distraction from my overwhelming responsibilities of being a wife and mother. Just as the lights dimmed, Terri and I found our way down a middle aisle to the perfect seats as we juggled our buttery popcorn and drinks. It had been a while since my friend and I had seen a good chick flick, and the trailers for this film looked promising. Starring Meryl Streep and Clint Eastwood, the movie promised to be a different love story, one where the characters were close to our age, not the young twenty-somethings usually portrayed in love stories.

Without a doubt, the movie—The Bridges of Madison County—and the novel by Robert James Waller, were blockbuster hits. From the beginning, the movie captured my heart, and I identified with the character portrayed by Meryl Streep. Francesca, a plain and modest farm wife, fatefully met a National Geographic photographer, Robert Kincaid. They had a brief affair while Francesca’s husband and children were away. When Robert’s work assignment ended, Robert asked Francesca to leave behind all she had ever known to be with him in love and life. On screen, Francesca’s struggle was recognizable, and I could sense the struggle in Francesca’s head and heart. Should she remain the dutiful farm wife, or leave the safe cocoon of her life for the chance of love and adventure? Near the end of the movie, as Robert is leaving town, and regrettably Francesca as well, their paths cross one last time.

Francesca accompanies her husband into town to pick up supplies. She remains behind in the truck when she spots Robert standing across the road in the pouring rain. Their eyes meet, and without touching, they hold on to each other, but Robert stands still. He doesn’t walk toward the truck. Without speaking one word, his eyes plead for her to come with him. Tears well up in Francesca’s eyes and her struggle is palpable, yet she makes no move to leave the truck. They share a smile; it’s their last, and they both understand. As Robert walks away and gets into his truck to depart, Francesca’s eyes continue to follow him.

With tears streaming down my face, I understood Francesca’s emotions as she agonized over choosing between a chance at a once in a lifetime love, or remaining in the safety and security of the only life she has ever known. When Francesca’s husband returns to the truck and they pull behind Robert’s truck, Francesca has one last opportunity to change her mind. She glances down at the truck’s door handle. Unnoticed by her husband seated next to her, she puts her hand on the handle and lifts it. Francesca is one movement away from changing her life, from opening a door to a different life. There’s no doubt about what Francesca wants to do, but a paralyzing undercurrent of indecision and doubt shackle her from making any move towards a new beginning. I wanted her to jump out of the truck and run into the open arms of Robert.

Francesca, it’s your chance at true love. This chance won’t come around again. Go ahead, Francesca, get out of the truck, I pleaded identifying with her struggle. Get out of the truck! Run, Francesca, Run!!

Francesca didn’t, but I did. Many years later, when I struggled like Francesca with making a life-changing move, I got out of the truck and ran into the arms of my soul mate. When I left my marriage, I—like Francesca—was not a young woman, but in the autumn of my life. I had all the trappings of the good life, with a satisfying career and a loving family. I had lived by all the conventional rules: to plan, work hard, and be the loving wife and devoted mother. I was at a point in my life when much of the hard work was behind me. My husband and I remained secure and settled in our careers with retirement just ahead on the horizon. I imagined that all the hard work would pay off with traveling, enjoying grandchildren, and other options of choice for the good life. But, in an instant, my life would change, and I would travel down a path I could have never imagined. I willingly walked through an open door, but in doing so took my family with me and in the process would shock and hurt them deeply, possibly even irrevocably.

For most of my adult life, she was there, often present in my mind and in my memories. Not in the forefront of my daily life and thoughts, but she would intrude in moments when something triggered memories of her and our undeniable connection. The trigger could be a song, a UPS truck, or the historic city of Savannah; all reminders of strong feelings and a striking attraction. My attraction existed for a real woman, not a fantasy created in my mind. I rarely allowed myself to dwell on the what if’s because I imagined the possibility of a different life—a life with her—unattainable. When our lives would randomly intersect, I believed the attraction was not reciprocal. For over 20 years, I never tried to seek her out. Terrified of rejection, I lacked the self-confidence to pursue her in a way that might reveal my padlocked affections, and our age difference only heightened my feelings of insecurity.

When private thoughts of yearning for her would tramp into my fenced-in heterosexual world, I would chide myself for being silly and entertaining foolish thoughts.

Be logical, Jenna, I would think. Get real. You are a married woman.

Up to this point, I had lived my life in a single narrow lane as a heterosexual woman. When I took my vows, I did so with full intent of being married for the rest of my life. As a young bride, I didn’t have the slightest suspicion that when I fell in love and said I do, that one day I would be a breaker of vows and purposely wade into the waters of adultery. If only I had known myself better. If only I had known I would experience such an inconceivable longing for another, I could have navigated away from a marriage destined to suffer heartbreak at the end. Many years after I spoke my vows, a door opened by a woman would change everything.

Chapter 2

For most of my childhood, my family and I lived in the South, but I don’t consider myself a true southerner. My mother’s roots were in the Midwest and I was born in the city in which my dad romanced and married my mom.

Under a warm summer sun in 1949, a skinny southern boy turned idealistic art student, and a beautiful red-headed secretary, met and fell in love. Beth was just 18 years old when she met Will, a student at the Kansas City Art Institute. Will had already served four years in the Navy and entered college to pursue his passion of art. My mom once told me, Your father was the cutest and funniest guy I ever dated. It was love at first sight. Not long after they married, my dad dropped out of art school and went to work for a large manufacturing company in Kansas City—and quickly the young couple grew into a family of five. When my mom was only 20 years old, I was born. In quick succession, twenty months later a second daughter was born; and fifteen months later, my baby sister was born. I didn’t fully appreciate until adulthood that my parents were good at marriage, but even better at parenting.

After a few years of marriage, my parents stepped out in faith and made a brave move. I would have loved to have been a fly on the wall during the conversations that were the impetus for making a life-changing decision. I can imagine my dad saying, Beth, what do you think about leaving all this snow and bullshit behind?

Well, what do you have in mind?

How about moving to Miami? I saw an ad in the paper that Pan American Airlines needs mechanics.

The response of my 24-year-old mother must have been, But what about my family? I will leave behind all I’ve ever known.

I’m sure they talked more over the next few days or weeks, but she came around and supported her idealistic husband. So there you go; my young, adventurous parents moved to Miami with three little girls in tow.

My dad got his job at Pan American Airlines. I can still picture my young, handsome dad headed out the door for work dressed in his work uniform, a crisp, white, one-piece jumpsuit with a light blue Pan Am logo. Every time I see the actor Daniel Craig, he reminds me of my father. He resembled him, and I’ve always likened my mother’s resemblance to Shirley MacLaine.

Like many people of my generation, I grew up in a traditional home. A child of the fifties and the first born of three girls, my parents taught me and expected me to be a good girl. I followed the rules, but when my sisters and I got together, we proved to be challenging. Still, children back then knew their place and were seen but not heard. My dad used to say, Don’t embarrass the family. You want someone to think you’re a god-damn nut!

Back then, children’s egos weren’t so fragile and parents didn’t hesitate to get real with their children about their behavior and the consequences that followed. The parenting philosophy was that consistent, firm discipline and life’s experiences built character and prepared you for the real world. My parents disciplined us with various effective techniques. Spanking, shame, guilt, lecture, and infrequent time-outs, were just a few of the consequences we faced if we stepped over the line and double-dared our parents.

Both of my parents, though, had their own specialty that brought serious dread and gnashing of teeth. My mom, always calm, would begin the long, calm talk in a quiet voice. She knew just what to say to make you feel like the hugest piece of crap, and the talk lingered with you for hours or even days. Sometimes, I wanted to yell, Slap the shit out of me and get it over with!

My dad gave you the crazy eye. The crazy eye was a total facial look that had a hypnotizing effect through the eyes. As kids, we tried to escape the crazy eye, to look away, but the eyes always drew you in. The eyes were one step away from spinning, rolling back in the head, and turning blood red with popping blood vessels and all. The crazy eye could occur anywhere, at any time. If our family dined out at a restaurant (which was a rare occurrence in those days), the crazy eye had a laser-beam ability to lock your eyes from across the table. No need of a translation or for anything to be said out loud. Without words, crazy eye said, When we get home, I will kill your ass! My sisters and I understood when my father got pissed at us, he entered the zone of the crazy eye and he lost all connection to civility and mental stability. Round and round the eye would go! Where it stopped, nobody knows!

When I look back on my childhood, crazy eye and all, I know that I was so blessed. My family was middle class and my parents worked hard to provide for our needs and a lot of our wants. Miami turned out to be the perfect locale for a young family, with an abundance of sunshine, easy access to the beach, and the carefree lifestyle of living near the coast. My parents bought a small boat, and on the weekends we often made day trips out to the Keys. My dad navigated the boat looking for a perfect place to drop anchor and then we spent hours diving off the front of the boat, swimming, and fishing. We usually ended our day with a picnic on our own private beach just as the sun slowly dropped on the horizon. I remember the beauty of nature around us, the crystal blue water, and seeing my first huge sea turtle. It was the best of times!

We lived in several houses in Miami, but the one I remember best was a block away from my elementary school. My parents bought the newly constructed ranch with a manmade lake in the back. I can still remember the layout of the house; all new with terrazzo floors, a concrete patio in back, two baths, and three bedrooms. It was modern for the day! For my young parents, it must have represented a slice of the American dream, but also a symbol of making it for a middle-class family.

My parents didn’t have the same worries that parents of today have. We were free to play outside and roam the neighborhood unsupervised. In those days, you never heard of kidnappings or child predators. It was a time when a child’s naiveté and innocence remained preserved for a long time. Parents didn’t worry about something inappropriate popping up on TV. There were no computers to lure a child into a dangerous liaison, and no registered sex offenders living around the corner.

The year I turned seven, Santa brought me the most amazing present ever! A doll, unique beyond belief, and she wasn’t a stupid baby doll. This doll was one of the first Barbie dolls and I knew I was a lucky girl. A beautiful, sophisticated brunette dressed in a black, sequined evening gown, she was a miniature grown-up. Barbie had a stylish ponytail and tiny black high heels that stayed on her feet. I played with her almost daily, and she took me away to imaginary places. I designed clothes for her and envisioned myself as a famous designer. She became the first of many Barbies for a family with three girls. My parents spent a small fortune on all the dolls and the accessories. Our Barbies lived quite the life with a modern Barbie house, a sporty pink convertible, and always the chance at romance with Ken. Besides the store-bought outfits, thanks to my mom, all the girls had quite the sophisticated wardrobe. My mom made many handmade outfits for our Barbies. I don’t know how she did it, because by this time in our lives, my mom worked full-time and had many responsibilities as a wife and mother, but she devoted many hours to sewing clothes for our dolls and the outfits she created looked store bought.

Years later, as teenagers, we gave away all the Barbie dolls and their clothes—including the clothes handmade by mom—to a neighbor family. They had four girls, and it seemed like a generous thing to do. We considered ourselves too mature and grown-up, and we didn’t need our dolls anymore! I wonder to this day if that hurt my mom’s feelings. We didn’t even ask her permission. I have no remembrance of any disappointment or admonishment voiced at all by mom. I wish to this day I had saved at least one treasured handmade outfit and my first Barbie!

My sisters and I, although we played with dolls, were not sugar and spice and everything nice. We were tall and athletic, quite the tomboys at heart, and we played outside almost every day. When we lived in Miami, every day the sky seemed blue and the sunshine always abundant. We ran the neighborhood in flip-flops or barefooted. In this coastal paradise, summer lasted most of the year and the livin’ was easy.

My parents often invited friends over for cook-outs on the patio out back. The adults ate steaks, and the kids ate hot dogs. The kids didn’t whine or complain about the inequity of the main course. As kids, I don’t believe it occurred to us that we needed or even wanted a steak. We knew our place, and we felt damn lucky to have a wiener! We played within earshot of our parents and could overhear most of the adult talk. As a child, you didn’t insinuate yourself into the adult conversation or try to be the center of attention. I overheard conversations from afar, and I knew my parents were smart as they discussed world events, politics, and just about everything. They talked a lot and, when appropriate, spent a lot of time talking with us, too,

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