My mom also loves Columbus. She was going to get the same tattoo I did, but she chickened out at the last minute. She does have an Ohio State tattoo on her ankle. I don’t know why. I’ve wanted it for a while. It’s a cliché at this point to get this tattoo in Columbus. You see a lot of people with Ohio tattoos with a heart in the middle. Or some variation of it. I know people who have their zip code in there, or my friend has the number of his house when he was a kid on there. That’s a cliché, but I wanted it.
I’ve never been queer-bashed or sexually harassed in Columbus. Just walking down the streets. I have other places. Further proving my point that Columbus is better. I have a lot of positive memories. I’m single now, but when I was with my girlfriend of two years I would take her into Columbus when I wanted to lavish her with attention. We went to Florentine’s on West Broad street. We were clearly a couple and that wasn’t a problem.
Last June, the day marriage equality passed, my friend and I were going to see Walk the Moon, at what was then the LC Pavilion. Express Live. It’s such a stupid name. We went there, we had gotten dinner beforehand, and there were rainbow flags everywhere. The whole town was covered in rainbows. When we went to the actual concert, the news was on telling the story of the first couple in Columbus to get married. It was a lesbian couple; I don’t remember what their names were. Everyone had rainbow flags on. It was raining and no one cared because everyone was crying too hard. That was a good day.
I specifically wanted to do a three-year program at Loyola that was an MSW, a master’s in Women’s Studies, but I realized that I don’t really want to write a dissertation, which you had to do. If I didn’t want to do that exact program, there was no point in moving to a city that’s really unaffordable. My mom brought up the point that my cousin who also got her MSW at Ohio State has a job now because of an internship in grad school. The social work community is very tight knit and does not like to let outsiders in. If you do your social work stuff in Columbus at Ohio State, you’re more likely to get a job. It was more practical. Also, my mom has wanted me to go to Ohio State since she found out she was pregnant with me, so it was a lot of things. I had a lot of moments where the dust kind of settled and I realized that was the answer. I make a lot of decisions like, “Why not? I can stay in Columbus.”