Tracy, age 7
Yellowstone, Wyoming (1973)
Here I am at age 7, just out of 1st grade, on a family trip. I was with my parents and two younger sisters. We lived in a suburb of Cleveland, Ohio, and spent almost 3 weeks on the road. I was a tomboy from the beginning, and I remember how exciting it was to get this cowboy hat and run around playing cowboys and Indians (and no, we weren't very PC-aware back then...) When I look at this photo now, it makes me laugh - I was so butch and self-confident!
My parents were always very cool and didn't force me to wear girly clothes. And my Mom gave up on dresses before I even hit kindergarten. My middle sister is only one year younger than me, and we often chose to dress alike. Funny, she is a lesbian, too! Our youngest sister, who is straight, is the odd-girl-out.
Boys did not interest me in the least, and I had my first serious crush on a girl in 2nd grade, and I never looked back.
For young gay and lesbian kids who might be reading this -- hang in there and believe in yourself. I am 45 now, and the changes I have seen so far in my lifetime are incredible. When I was your age, I never would have imagined I could be married to a woman, but I now live in New Hampshire and I am.
By the time you are my age, it will be an even more different world.
You have lots of love and happiness ahead of you!
Tracy's first, famous-person same sex crushes:Julie Andrews, Helen Reddy, & Karen Carpenter