I have been a mostly closeted fan of The X-Files since 1993 only outing myself a few months prior to this addition to my list. I read a lot of fan fiction and had never commented and I sure as hell would never have added to the noise by creating my own stuff. I just lurked.
Because of the relentless mockery I endured, I was afraid to show any sign that I enjoyed something that was not aligned with what my family thought was acceptable or “normal.” Their desire to steal my joy kept me paralyzed and afraid to stand out. In order to push through that fear, I decided to join Tumblr and gave myself an X-Files related username (well, actually Molly did), and I started following random blogs. And then I got brave enough to like things and comment and, even though it takes a while to be noticed, I put myself out there in a way that I never thought myself capable of before.
The fandom was so welcoming and it felt good to give back to a community who had helped me weather through so many times in my adult life where I needed some escape or distraction. Please don’t hold back what makes you light up. And don’t let others insecurities make you live a small life. Life is too short. Love what you love and let that light shine bright.
Sometimes bravery is becoming a joiner.