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What have you done today to make you feel proud?

Hi All,

I hope everyone is having an amazing pride month so far. This month has been an extra special one for me as I finally, after years and years of eating, made it to my first ever pride event! To say it was a long time coming is a severe understatement, but I am so happy that it finally did and I loved every aspect of it!

Now as some of you are aware my home life doesn’t just allow me to take a few days away without a just reason. Telling my parents that I’m going to spend the weekend partying and enjoying being gay is out of the question for now, so I had to lie and say I was visiting friends in Manchester, whilst secretly staying in central London and going to pride events. It works out to be more expensive of course, but I treated it like a mini Gaycation (tm) and made the most of it. I mean I had planned my outfit a few weeks ahead and also planned one for rain, which thankfully never came, so I got to wear what I wanted and feel amazing in it.

Sadly my gay besties were away so couldn’t enjoy pride with me, but bae was there and we had a great time. I got to enjoy some of the parade before he arrived, and let me tell you, I almost cried as I walked up the steps from Oxford Circus Station. I could hear crowds of people yelling and enjoy No theiparade. Could see so many colourful characters as I walked to the square and saw the floats go by. I was overwhelmed by the positivity of it all, and started to get teary eyed. Years of waiting and being annoyed that I missed out melted away as I felt at home with everyone there. I walked along and was glad that the busy streets were pedestrianised for the day (that should happen more often, if not permanently). It was a fun day, and the streets were alive with people being open, happy and accepted. I must say though I didn’t notice too many people of colour like myself, but I was enjoying my first pride event.

The following day I went to an inclusive event called U.K. Black Pride. This event targets ethnic minorities in the LGBTQ community, and gives them a safe space to enjoy pride and the festivities. Set in a park in Vauxhall, I didn’t know what to expect, but was so spurprised when I got there with bae. Never had I ever seen such a diverse group of LGBTQ people, all having fun, with amazing food, great music (they play RnB, grime and hip-hop, which are all my favourite) and so many interesting people. It was a much more relaxed affair than the parade, which at times felt a bit too corporate. You could chill in the park and enjoy the vibe, all whilst celebrating being ethnic in the LGBTQ community. I honestly preferred it over the parade. Although both rents have their own positive vibe. I was shocked that it wasn’t part of the official events for pride in London, but realised after that they boycott that as it’s all about corporations and not about people. That made sense as float after float in the parade were dedicated to the LGBTQ in businesses showing how accepting the company is etc etc etc. This event just allowed people to enjoy being LGBTQ and not focus on businesses, but rather stories of how people have overcome any prejudice within the community.

All I All the weekend was amazing, and I can’t wait until next year when I can enjoy more of the events. I also want to check out other pride events in big cities like Manchester and Brighton, just to see the difference and really celebrate with everyone in the LGBTQ community in the U.K. I’ll even make sure to have more gay besties and allies to enjoy the parties with, as it really does bring people together in a nice way.

Looking forward to more pride in the future.



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