[My name is] Sandra, I’m 42 and I live in Lake Jackson, TX. Well, it’s kind of a tight knit community. We’ve got what we call church alley, so it’s a very Christian oriented town, Lake Jackson is. It’s not a big city. It’s growing, but it’s not a big city. It’s not a rural city. People, for the most part are friendly. Haven’t had any issues, ever, in the city. It’s near the coast. That’s about it. Not a whole heck of a lot going on, in Lake Jackson. [laughter]
I identify as a lesbian, and I have my whole life been a tomboy, for the most part. But I’ve never like, never identified as a boy. It was always as a girl, or tomboy.
I was born in Freeport. It’s right down the road, about ten miles closer to the beach. My childhood, was…my brother and sister were ten and twelve years older than I was, so I was almost an only child seemed like. My mom spoiled me rotten. But then, I lost my mom when I was eleven…to complications with diabetes. So, it was, pretty carefree up until that point and at that point, it was…alot of changes were made. I had to really face reality, you know, without my mother, and with my father who didn’t know really what to do without her. So there was a pretty lost time for both of us there, until my father remarried, a couple years later. Which started a whole other page in the book. So, for the most part, young childhood: fun. Teenage, adolescent: a bit of a struggle, because when my father remarried he married a woman that had lots of kids. They were older than me, mostly girls.
The girls were like, girly girls, so there was this little chubby tomboy coming into their family and I don’t think they really knew what to do with me. You know what I mean? So that was a struggle. I didn’t fit in. I didn’t feel like I fit in, and at that point: twelve, thirteen years old…I…I knew I liked girls but I didn’t know what to do about it, or didn’t know what to say about it, so it was stressful and kind of a struggle at times.
The very first person that I ever told that I was gay was my best friend that I grew up with (who is also our roommate who’s not here.) But, we were on a dead end street in Clute where we lived. Right over here…Clute and Lake Jackson: basically one town. But we lived on St. Anne’s street in Clute, and I don’t know what brought it up or how it came about, but I said, “I’mmmm….” Granted, we were like probably 8 years old. She’ll tell you about eight, nine years old, which I think is right, she has a better memory than I do. But I said, “I have to tell you something.”
And she said, “What?”
I said, “I’mmmmmm…….” and I couldn’t say anything.
She’s like, “You’re what? You’re what?”
I said, “Ok, it’s three letters.” And so we went about it this goofy way. “It’s three letters. It starts with a ‘G'” And I made her figure it out that way, like totally giving it away, the whole way through it.
She finally said, “You’re gay?!” Her first question for some reason was, “With who?” [laughter]
I said, “I don’t know! Nobody! No! I just like girls, I think.”
So she was like, “I don’t care! Do you like me?”
I said, “No! You’re like a sister, we’re like sisters. You’re my best friend, so no! No!” So anyways, we always joke about that.
This is an excerpt of our June 20, 2014 interview with Sandra in Lake Jackson, TX.