Titles we wear…..

Man, Boy, Son, Fag, Christian, Baptist, Artist, Homo, Crazy, Virgo, Cook, Friend, Enemy, Gay, Fat, Professor, Assistant, Teacher, Single, Democrat, Student I could keep going but we all wear lots of titles some positive some negative. Some titles in life we choose other are ones we given by others. These titles we often let define us, when we let that happen we often end up living a life that is not what we would have wanted or should have had. I spent a lot of life trying to be something I wasn’t or trying to fit a definition definition definition definition a title that just did not work. I was late in coming out because I was so scared of the reality of it. Some of the titles I had chosen to wear Christian and Baptist were ones that I just am Gay man, did not seem to fit together and in reality it seem to totally contradictory to each other.  I spent many years being very self destructive and living a double life of sorts because I could see how the two could work together. During this time of political turmoil its hard to understand where other people are coming from and life treats us all differently and it becomes very hard find understanding at times.

I live a very fast paced busy life without a lot of down time. When I find that I have downtime I spend a lot of time thinking and over thinking at times. trying to figure out what things mean and how to process the past and the future. At this stage of my life I have been living another one of these titles for some long I am not sure I would know how to get past it, that is single. I have spent way more of life single then not, and please dont think I am complaining cause I am not at all its just a reality in your mid 30s you think about a lot and it becomes harder figure out where you really fit in life. Adulthood is created in pairs or couples more often then not. and when you are a single that changes how things happen. So some of these titles like single just happen for the good or the bad, but define who we are to so many people and ourselves at times.

Sometimes we have to learn to love these titles or others we have to prove them wrong, and more often then not we have to learn to stop listening to what other people have to say about who we are and what we are doing in life.



Its hard to not take it personally

Sometimes our life experiences make it really hard to not take somethings really personally. As much as I try to realize that every action that happens is not directly related to rejection. As the only active openly gay man or woman for that matter in a baptist church is is hard to not see everything as personal. I have written before about my what lead to my time away from the church, being rejected from a place you love most in the world is something that I have discovered is hard to get over. Its a grieving process, it honestly has worked much like dealing with the death of a loved one. But is someways its almost harder cause you know its still there and active you are just no longer apart of its current times. I know I am loved and accepted by the majority of my current body of Christ, but the dirty looks I get every Sunday from one person I know he does not and really most of the time I am fine with that. You do not grow up a slightly over weight kid white kid who loved Rainbow Bright and My my little Pony in a majority African American elementary school and not have a tough skin. But once in while even the hardest callus breaks open. Recently I have been processing two things that have happened, that I will be the first to admit most likely have nothing to do with my sexuality.  There are some wounds that never totally heal with just learn to cover them so they dont get irritated. That irritation still happens from time to time no matter how hard you cover it.

I know this seems very self centered and your right it most likely is just that. The way the human mind works we are naturally somewhat self centered but not in a overly negative way, but in a ways that keeps our lives on the path they need to be. Sometimes we just have to take things personally and move on. and even it was not intend to be personal sometimes other peoples intentions dont change the grieving process and might still reopen the wound. Then you have to figure out if you want to just recover it or is it time to give it air and let other people see the wound.


Owning your reality

When we own our own reality we share it with others. It seems that often the reality of where and how lives work is very different then what others see. We have experience things very differently, these differences are what the world and America great and sad sometimes.  This week end I was blessed to be about support a couple of great organization as they raised money to do what they do. One of these was a formal occasion, and my formal style is not the typical for Huntington, West Virginia for sure. Well I had decided to take the bus downtown to the even where cocktails would be served its always better to be safe then sorry, well on the way to the bus stop I got so kindly remained that is was not Halloween yet, I just thank you for the heads up and kept walking. Well I wait a a few at the stop and realized that I had read the schedule wrong and would have to wain another 40 min for the bus. Well I dont wait well at all so I took off walking (ultimately a bad idea in new dress shoes :P) but as I was walking downtown to toward the event another car slowed down and was starring out the window at me, I looked good so I dont blame them for that but as I approached the sidewalk toward beside the now almost stopped car the guy in the passenger seat proceeds to inform me “that no one wants your fucking faggot ass in this town, thank god trump is going to win the presidency so we will be able to just shoot all of fucking faggots.”  I am not sure what is worse what they said or that I was not surprised or really even phased by. I shared this moment of social media, not because I want the attention but because if you have not walked in my shoes you dont know the reality of being at apart of any group that has to fight for equality. I truly hope that no one reading this has ever had the someone yelling fag out the a car window as they drove by or ever felt unsafe just because of who they are. But the reality is I know a lot of you have in different ways maybe women, African Americans, Muslims….. all understand this on some level.

In life there is only one thing better and that is sharing our realities and truths. People have said to be how brave it is to share my life with people, I dont think its brave I think its mandatory. I have been given a personal mandate and conviction that without sharing my stories nothing is going to better. I really hope that none of you ever have to live a day in shoes, but remember the words you say the actions you do might be effecting your kids or grand-kids who are to scared to be authentic because of the word they have heard you say. Be aware that hate breeds hate and love breeds love, we have enough hate in the world.