“I’m planning to be away this year for pride. I’ve done my share of being counted all of thirty years of being one with the community, I thought; it’s about time to turn this legacy to the new generation to show up this weekend. But even in this situation of not being physically counted you can be sure that I’m still rainbow blooded who will always be there in spirit.

There are so many things that have changed, yet there are so many things that remain. The biggest change I could think of is leaving our roots and a footing in our country with marriage equality; it started with a state (thank you Massachusetts), and it crept slowly but surely from coast to coast. Today all 50 states are in. We can marry who we love.

We have more friends and allies more than ever. But yet, we are still victim to bullying, to discrimination, to harassment and being marginalized like ever before. Teens have been disproportionately more prone to suicide for the fear of rejection. It is not over. We still have a lot to cover. I don’t think it ever ends.

But I would like to thank again as I always do, my family, who has never questioned and have always supported the rainbow, because they know, that love is love. Thank you for those friends who have no stake at all with that rainbow, but have always given me a pot of gold at the end, you know who you are, and you are the biggest beautiful surprises. Thank you to my most colorful friends, who are part of that rainbow, you are all fabulous and I thank you that you color my life, again, you know who you are.

Happy Pride everyone. I hope we get lucky in the future we won’t need a pride weekend because we are JUST PEOPLE.” Raymar, Los Angeles. #PersonalStories

Raymar hopes that sharing his story can help others who are experiencing a similar journey. A portion of your tax-deductible donation will go to DAP Health (Desert AIDS Project) to help them with their literally life-saving work. CLICK HERE to make a donation!