Stay Proud After Pride
Have you all noticed the lack of rainbows lately? I always realize when pride season is over because I see less and less things in rainbow colors or with rainbow stickers on them.
Even though pride season is over, you need to always make sure you stay proud. I have been very vocal in the past about how big corporations use pride colors to increase revenue or ways you can support the LGBTQ+ community. This is not going to be about those things, but simply a way to express to you all how my pride season was this year.
West Hollywood pride
Other than the outrageous prices of the entry to both West Hollywood pride and Long Beach pride I had a great time with friends and my partner. I felt that West Hollywood pride did not feel like a community event, but more like a place to have a drink before heading to all the bars. This was the first year that West Hollywood had its own pride, and you could really tell.
Los Angeles Pride still happened this year but instead of it being in West Hollywood, it was in Hollywood, California. I did not attend Los Angeles pride this year, but I heard from many people that it was a great experience and Christina Aguilera performed the day of the event.
Do you identify as a member of the LGBTQ community?
Long Beach pride
Long Beach pride this year was a great experience and it brought me a greater sense of community. This event is something that we all needed especially the last few years in a pandemic.
Long Beach pride was filled with a mixture of friends, families, and allies. Compared to West Hollywood, Long Beach pride had so many vendor booths for the community to check out. These booths ranged from LGBTQ+ friendly organizations that were giving out swag items to LGBTQ+ small businesses which were able to sell pride patrons.
One memory I have of that event was being able to dance with all of my friends in one of the dance tents. There were several DJs I liked that also played throughout the duration of pride.
Sharing this experience with people you love
The best part of Long Beach pride this year was attending with my partner. Other than going to West Hollywood pride a few weeks prior, Long Beach was his very first official pride. He really enjoyed himself at this event and expressed to me that he would love to come back every year. He said that it was nostalgic to see just how many people love, support, and care for this community.
Since I have been in the field of public health, I have always marched in the pride parade. This year I got the opportunity to watch among the crowd and I really saw it in a different lens. This time I saw it from the outside and gained a whole new appreciation for those that walk and show their pride. So many beautiful faces and minds coming together for a cause - and nothing can take that away.
How many of your friends or family members are living with HIV?
Have you ever been unhoused or insecurely housed?