|see, those jackets let you know something VERY bad has happened|
So, there's this idea that to want and have money is somehow less righteous than to be poor. That to be pious one must forgo all worldly pleasures, possessions, and comforts... I'm going to go ahead and call bullshit on that one. I'm not the first, none of this is original, it's just my version.
Let's play it out this way...
If the world's currency was hugs do you think arm length would have as much stigma associated with it as money does? I'm going to go with "doubtful" but I have really long arms so maybe I'm just being an opportunist here. It doesn't really matter how much money someone has or how long their arms are... There is no direct connection to integrity.
If we choose to participate in a capitalist society (which we don't have to, by the way... plenty of people find ways around it), which is what I choose because I suspect this is where I will make the most impact, we will be exchanging energy in the form of money. Because of the lifestyle I choose for myself and my son I need money. I need money to pay my rent. I need money to buy food and clothing. I need money to access certain learning opportunities. I need money to provide care for spiderman so I can care for myself. I need money for a lot of things. I also want money for a lot of things. I like the way I feel when I wear beautiful clothes and cheek stain. I like to try new foods at independent restaurants. I like to go to shows and watch people practice their art.
When I have the money to meet my needs (and even more so when I have enough to address the wants too) my life has significantly less tension, and the absence of tension allows the reality of love to shine through... and if that's not noble I don't know what is (but please don't tell me... I'm liking where this is going).
To build a fortune for myself (in this case, by the way... extra=fortune. fortune is enough for needs and some for wants. simple as that) I will have been practicing the following this "month." In order to teach myself to am keeping a Book of Fortune* and in it I record the following daily:
- On a sheet of paper with a vertically line dividing it through the middle: on the left side I record my financial reality (example: "I always end up with less money than I think I have") and then on the right I record the opposite belief (example: "I always know how much money I have and it is enough"), and then I cross off the belief on the left.
- Money Flow: A daily total of the amount I've received (flow in), and a daily total of the amount I've spent (flow out), and then the difference (positive/negative) between the two. We're looking for "extra." Remember, "extra" is the fortune and you are allowed to have a fortune.
- Cash on Hand: (the collecting part of this takes place in a purple velvet box in my life... you choose your own container). I will take what I always have on hand ($10) and multiply that by 10 to determine the next goal of what I will always have on hand ($100). Then I will put money (and record the amount in the book of fortune) into the box every day like so: a dime for each day and then the same amount as the day before plus another dime (Day 1: 10cents Total: 10cents, Day 2: 20cents Total: 30cents, Day 3: 30 cents Total: 60 cents, Day 4: 40 cents Total: 1 dollar) until I have reached that goal of cash on hand... and then start over again (with 10cents a day) until I hit the next goal ($1000).
*If this all sounds kind of witchy--that's because it is. If that bothers you, let's talk about why...
and here's the thing... when I am doing the right thing for me (spiritually... energetically...) i DO get instant gratification. So, to everyone who thinks that desiring it is foolish: PFFFFFTTTT! I say to you. You don't have to have it if you don't want to, but I'm going to keep on receiving it as the gift it is.
So, that's where we are today... more gifts coming in at a rapid pace (instantly, in fact!). As I mentioned in the intro post for this "month" I am participating in Jo Anna Rothman's "The Receiving Project" as a way to open myself up to more abundance. Yes, this month does (will, I swear...) have a fiscal lean, but abundance is about so much more than money... and my abundance seems to be quintupling by the moment.
The Receiving Project involves getting a daily "gift" from Jo Anna with loving language prompting the reader to open her/himself to receiving and seeing the gifts the universe delivers daily. Today is day 8 and I would like to share with you that 6 or 7 of the last days have been rough for me.
I have been feeling off center and had been having a hard time connecting to my creative self and the last couple days have been rough in general with a lot of generalized anxiety and activation in my body and right this moment I finally feel completely my (artist) self. And the gifts I received from the universe are so unbelievably beautiful I can only process them through sheer excitement!
Here's a little bit about two of them:
|iced tea: a gift from a friend. |
the photo: a gift from my inner artist
- I am taking an online chakra photo workshop with Vivienne McMaster and it was something I signed up to do just for fun… It started last week and I was just NOT feeling it. Every week we focus (pun intended) on one of the chakras, she sends beautiful emails Mon-Weds of each week with prompts about the chakras and what to look for in our lives/days, and encourages us to capture it with photography… and, again, just not feeling it. Which felt so wrong… because this is so my thing. This week began and again I was having a hard time getting into it and found myself wanting to procrastinate and then finally today I just started to see photos everywhere. Everywhere I looked I saw a beautiful photo connected to the sacral chakra and what it's all about (feelings, water, flow, passion, orange…) and I was able to capture what I saw with my eyes in the frame.
- THEN… I made a new friend. :) I met her via freecycle the first weekend I lived here (she came to get my moving boxes). When she came here that day she saw a piece of art I made (the red door) and was just gushing over it (which was, of course, nice) and then later we were standing outside talking and she read me like a book! She grabbed my hand and stared right through me and said "believe in your art, you are so talented. you can live off your art. it's all you need" and (like I told her today) I have no desire to be a professional visual artist, but I feel like the writing and the work that's going to come from/out of the blog is my art and it was exactly what I needed to hear after dragging spiderman and myself to a foreign place on a whim that I would feel at home here and be able to live the life I wanted… sigh. So, I walked back upstairs and I was bawling and madly scribbled what she had said on a post-it (which is in front of me on the computer right this minute). The next day I wrote her and asked if she wanted to get together again (which she did) and then I put it off because I was overwhelmed by the move and we finally connected today and it was just great! I saw her. She saw me. We found friends in each other. It was just lovely.
theater production something-or-other
and also for as long as I can remember I've been getting the message that this list is a problem. that it means that I lack focus and dedication, and without a singularly focused passion I will never have enough drive to "make it." Which is a shame, because "making it" was also the way to have a life that could accommodate all of these different interests without going broke or struggling to get by.
It's also worth noting that when these beliefs were formed my most important priority was: "get attention in the form of praise" followed closely by "be the best" which is really the same thing as the first because being the best is just a way to get more praise. Just ask the Olympians, eh?
...and the combination of the laundry list and the be-best-goal was a recipe for... well, for nothing! those two things mixed together formed a delicious tonic that when consumed (and I drank it by the gallon) would render one motivationally paralyzed.
because (in case this isn't obvious--goodness knows it took me a while) it's impossible to be the best at everything. sigh... i know, it was tough for me too. how about a hug?
At some point this year during this process of perfecting imperfection I had started to let go of my need to do everything (and be the best). I would notice myself taking on more than my plate would accommodate and I would take a break and re-prioritize and not take the plate back to the table until it was balanced. And I was getting damn good at it too.
I noticed a few weeks ago that my plate was getting heavy again. Nothing was quite falling off the sides yet, but it was piled so high that it was starting to obscure my vision and I was dangerously close to losing my grip and dropping it (along with everything on it) to the floor. So, I started to look for a place to set it down and make choices about what was going to stay and what was going to go... I found a place to leave it and then... I got distracted.
And a welcome and delightful distraction she has been. But like is bound to happen when you meet someone who reflects back all of the glorious light in you (and then make out with that person)... it's going to dredge up some of your darkness too. Of course I'm used to the "she's going to change her mind and not want to do this with me" darkness and the "she's going to find out that I'm too moody or some other quality that makes me unworthy of love" darkness. Those are predictable, and I know the positive self talk I need to practice to get through them.
AND, by the way... I'm totally up for this. This (although not always as much fun as the other parts) is the point; this is how we (I) grow.
What I wasn't prepared for was the sudden return of the drive to be able to be the best at everything all at once and the sulky resentment for the last 10 years and what I chose to do with them and the reality that those choices led me here to a place where I'm several steps from where I want to be with some significant limits in the amount of risk I can take. Grrrrr... old self. Grrrr.
Really ego? I introduce you to someone who likes me for the me I am without even trying and you respond by telling me that I need to try harder? You can be a real jerk sometimes.
Okay, I'm sorry. I get it. You're not a jerk, but you are a bit misinformed. Thank you for the protective service you're trying to offer. I appreciate what you're trying to do for me.
Little digression about how this manifested today: I've been doing morning pages again since July 2nd and even though it hadn't happened spontaneously yet I knew that the potential to converse with my intuition was present in that process. So after a weekend home alone with a plan to clear my plate that left me even more overwhelmed with what's on it instead... I decided i would use this morning's pages to ask for some guidance. And, i got it! And it was loving and generous and helpful and everything one could expect their true self to be. She reminded me of the intentions I set for the year and that I'd manifested them all (new job, new home in la, someone awesome to hold hands with and kiss on) and asked me what i wanted next. And when i told her what I wanted next we went through all the things on my plate and cut what wasnt connected to the next big goals and made space for everything that was.
And then I closed the book, did my morning meditation, got spiderman (who is also requesting to be referred to as "golden knight" or "robot roscoe") off to day camp, aaaaaaannnnnndddddddd completely disregarded the agreement I had with myself (boo!). Instead of narrowing my focus and giving my energy to the things that really matter I started trying to do it all again... and accomplishing nothing.
Bah! What is up with me?! Freakin' dopamine and norepinephrine...
Luckily it was short lived. I'm a quick study... AND, in addition to Devon's presence dredging up some old (and new!) shit, it's also brought the most brilliant to-do list app into my life. So, I'm off to plan my life according to what I would be doing if I were living my heart's desire each moment.
which I totally am.
(and I PROMISE we're going to get to the topic of this month this week. P.R.O.M.I.S.E.)
but because you did... thanks.
- a super exciting compliment from a fellow book clubber on this here blog-ish thing
- As I read this, I started to realize (belatedly, I know) that you were doing a sort of Happiness Project. And then I remembered your disdain for the book of the same name... and THEN I looked through your blog archives to January 1st and learned about what you are doing... AND THEN I felt obliged to let you know that I think it's fantastic and inspiring and admirable, and WAY BETTER than Gretchen's way of doing anything.
- a love letter from an the creator of the Receiving Project who is interested in my work!
- a really dreamy evening out with a new character in this life story, Devon
- there's likely been more, but i'm going out with Devon again. gotta run!
i am so unbelievably busy. this is not new. i am always busy, still i always used to be able to find the time and space to ensure the needs of others were being met at or above the same level as my own. no longer! i can't seem to find time to do much of anything for anyone but myself and while part of that is completely terrifying... the other part is completely exhilarating!
i am existing in this space where i am honoring my body, mind, and spirit with 90% of my energy and the other 10% is doing things like the things i must do (that i don't want to) to keep my job, home, child, etc.
for example, i have many people to respond to in one way or another, and you know what i just did? i got a bikini wax. yep.
craziness! i have never lived like this before. is this how other people live?
i had an experience this week where i realized how attached i was to another irrational belief.
get this: i actually used to think it was SELFISH to make choices about relationships based on how i felt when i was with a person. somehow i thought that wanting someone in my life because i feel good when i am around them is wrong and choosing to limit contact with people who don't bring out the best in me was not loving, accepting, or nonjudgmental enough.
my goodness i have been a whack job for a good long while, eh? why didn't any of you tell me these things?! yeah, yeah. you tried. i didn't listen. or maybe you didn't even know yourselves?
but that's not why i'm here tonight. i'm here tonight to recap the play month and ring in the plenty month! woot!
Here is the scoop on the play month
Back on track. I recently fell in love with being a mother and right around the same time my son stopped giving kisses and saying "I love you." I ain't gonna lie--it stinks! But with the help of GT/Becky and some soul searching I can see/know that there's some magic in that. He's becoming his own person, and he's making his own choices (damn). He's evolving, and as our relationship evolves the needs change. Most important to me and my ego is the realization that he can sense that he doesn't have to try so hard anymore. It has been painfully evident for his entire life that the kid can read my mind and as much as I've always sent love I haven't always loved doing it. Cut to now, I love being a mother and he doesn't have to do anything to make that happen. That must be such a relief for his tiny nervous system.
I've learned in therapy that our children are going to trigger all our stuff... forever. So my kid is 5 and it's bringing up my 5 year old stuff and next year it will be my 6 year old stuff. Lately I've been thinking about how if this is what it's like for me to parent a child and get triggered... What the hell did I put my poor mother through? What do I still out her through? Woah.
Mom, thank you for teaching me that shut up, stupid, butt, fart, and sucks are words to avoid. I ignored you for many years, but you were right. They sound particularly awful coming out of the mouth of a small child.
Momma, thank you for giving me the space I needed to make up my own mind about things and thank you for being brave enough to give it me your point of view when I ask for it.
Mom, thank you for being the person who is most responsible for keeping this boy and I alive since the day he was born. I am not sure how I would have done it or how I would do it if I had to do it without you.
Momma, thank you for seeing me, and knowing me, and loving me anyway or maybe even because of those things.
Mom, thank you for all the notes and phone calls getting me out of things I didn't want to do.
Momma, thank you for the late nights of sewing and all of the handmade costumes--every time I wore one, and every time I put one on my son I feel tremendously loved.
Mom, thank you for all the handmade easter baskets and for the store bought one when I asked for it... yours really were better.
Momma, thank you for teaching me "it's only money" and to "see all points of view."
Mom, thank you for letting me be right even when I was wrong.
Momma, thank you for trying to protect me from harm in all forms for so long.
Mom, thank you for giving me an opportunity to learn tact, grace, courage, eloquence, and love just by watching you be you.
I love you.
Thank you for letting the Universe assign me to you.
xo zo zi co
I was leaving the house in Long Beach after packing up my final carload of stuff and driving to visit with GT/Becky (whose couch I'm sitting on to write this because that's the kind of relationship we have. She's a muse honorer.) when I realized it was here. My new life was here. My new life IS here. And I cried... big, fat, hot, salty, alligator tears of relief.
Yes, the move is now done, spiderman is registered for kindergarten at our neighborhood school, filing fees have been paid and the signed divorce papers have been filed with the court, I'm out of the closet I was never really in, I'm comfortable enough at my new job to tell my team members embarrassing stories about my dating life... and I'm finally used to being blonde. All of the external processes have resolved and the mad, crashing waves around me have slowed to a rippling pool. This is all helpful, and important, and the still waters let the tears know to come out but what's really here isn't the new life. What's really here is me. The new me who lives this new life is here. I am here.
Maybe you remember when I wrote about letting go of limiting beliefs? It wasn't a very well read post which felt awkward at the time because I thought it was a gem... but what I think is best isn't what always gets the most attention. In general y'all seem to gravitate towards vulnerability (and juicy dirt) and it felt vulnerable at the time, but it seems to fall into the category of things I tell people I've realized about myself and they respond with "duh."
A few days ago at work I was in training all day. I am a trainer, so sticking me in a room for 8 hours as a participant can be hit or miss. I'm not a passive learner, if I'm not involved I suffer... and so does everyone else. This training was great and I was involved. I had just written about aversion to silliness the night before and all of a sudden I was über-gooberiffic (which the iPad wants to auto correct to "goo erotic")! Cracking jokes and being playful with the other training participants (all within the scope of a professional learning environment of course).
At one point we were given a group assignment to build a freestanding structure as tall as we could with a pack of index cards and a role of masking tape. I quickly asked what "freestanding" meant to determine if my idea could be pulled off. The instructor said it meant it couldn't be held up by people or leaning against walls or furniture, but we could use the table or floor as a base... but she didn't say anything about the ceiling (and I didn't ask). So in our one minute group consult session I convinced our team to take the risk of being called cheaters by "building" our structure out of one long piece of tape that stretched from ceiling to floor that we would stick index cards to. At one point I heard myself say/ask "what's the worst thing that could happen, we get in trouble?" and they went for it!
|innovation or cheating?|
Our "structure" was definitely the tallest, most attractive, and leant itself to the most metaphors about risk taking and innovation throughout the rest of the training.
Steve Jobs would be proud... if he were alive... and knew me... And cared.
The other groups insisted that we cheated... and that was okay, it didn't hurt, not even sting. At one point after I'd inadvertently (ha ha ha) become the center of attention I found myself explaining that this was very unlike me. That I was normally a rule follower who prioritized being "good" over anything else... and that got more laughs than anything else I had said all day. A chorus of "yeah right, Kate!" vibrated through the room.
over lunch, eating the tomatoes I hadn't asked the restaurant to leave out of my salad (I can't tell you how big a deal this is. I have been avoiding tomatoes my entire life. I used to have nightmares as a child about ice cream sundaes with cherry tomatoes on top instead of cherries! As an adult I've tried them once a year or so only to confirm that I despised them) I was thinking about what I'd just witnessed in myself: I was being silly and playful, I was willing to take a risk and break the rules, I was eating tomatoes and enjoying them! ...it was pretty clear: I was changed. I was not becoming my new or best self... I am my new, best self.
The reframing of the limiting beliefs was a spell... and like good spells it was specific and quiet and didn't get a lot of attention giving it time to work it's magic. The belief exercise was just that at the time--an exercise. And now it's become reality.
I am here. And I am so grateful to be. And you are here to. Thank you for that. Woot!
|do you ever stop to visualize the ridiculousness of common phrases? |
i do. this person did too, and this is what it looks like to her.
very similar to my mental image.
For the first time in a few weeks I don't have anything written for tonight's scheduled blog post. All of these posts are always impromptu--I write them--I edit minimally--and sometimes I just post them a few days or weeks later, but today is REALLY impromptu. I'm going to write, edit (yeah right), and post all within the next 30 minutes because I have somewhere to be and something to immerse myself in.
This style of writing is how I started this, it shouldn't be that significantly different, but we'll see how it goes. It feels a little scarier than I'm used to feeling here lately.
If I'm being completely honest, which I usually am, I can see a typical pattern coming up in these "months." I'm nearing the end and becoming all too aware of how far off I am from where I want to be. I haven't, in this case, done nearly as much playing as I wanted to and I feel... well, honestly I feel fine about it. That's the thing about this radical self love business. I am very generous with the acceptance and forgiveness. So, I haven't played as much as I wanted to... so what? I'm still here, I'm still growing, I'm still learning. That's plenty.
(somewhere inside the critical voice chimes back in to ask whether we should be more concerned about how I'm ever going to get anything done if I forgive myself for not doing things so readily... but I'm not going to go there right now. My 30 minutes is now 25.)
I ruminated about play and whether I should feel bad about not doing it all day and I realized a couple of things.
- I have this belief that play has to be silly (goofy, loud, and big) to be play--I'm wrong.
- Just like with anything else, play exists in every day and taking the time to see it is just as powerful as intentionally practicing it.
- When I am delighting in something, I am being playful. Hearing a sound (the dishwasher--swoon!), smelling a smell (mmmm... jasmine), savoring a taste (hello dark chocolate almonds with sea salt) I am tapping into my playful self; connected to my senses and my core self... and that's play.
- When I "play" with my son, I am being playful. I don't always look like I'm playing. Sometimes I look like I'm watching and others like I'm just following along, but letting him lead the play defers to the true expert and (hopefully) builds his leadership skills too.
- Laughter is play. This blog is play. Organizing my desk is play. Honestly. The first is obvious, maybe even the second, but the third... yes. Organizing my desk is play. As a child, I played library (by writing codes in each of my books and filing them accordingly) and I got joy from it! Just because my play isn't silly, doesn't mean it isn't play. When I am experiencing joy and satisfaction--I am being playful.
- My relationships are play. When I say what many of the other people in the room are thinking, make a joke, tell a story, listen and reflect, hug-kiss-snuggle someone I love, pay a compliment, give feedback I am playing. I've never been described as subtle or quiet, but maybe my play is.
I want to tell people things like how much I love watching "Inside the Actor's Studio" and when I finally caught up on the ensemble cast episodes I had recorded months ago and saw the one with the cast of Glee I was reminded, even though I am so over actually watching Glee, that I love those people. Squee! I just want to squeeze them! and them... and James Lipton in the same room! Squee!
*let's add audit a class at whatever school James Lipton teaches at so I can attend a taping of that show to the bucket list. THAT, and attend the World Domination Summit
I can't think of any of the others right this second, but there all pretty much along the same lines:
- Earth-shatteringly important
- and I'm just oozing with delight about them and how happy all of those things make me
|i am here.|
Still... somehow it isn't enough to get me through an entire day. I carry around this message that if I could just hear it from someone (else) that it will be enough. So when I feel this way, I call or write the people closest to me and if they don't give it on their own I ask for it outright, and I get it, and it's good. Many of them love me the way I want to be loved. They see me the way I want to be seen and I get a little boost, and then it wears off... and the space remains.
I've felt the space a lot in this last week, and it feels huge and hauntingly empty. And even with my loved ones are throwing their love into the hole at a rapid pace and it's like dropping grains of sand into a volcano... the vacuous vessel remains darkened by the openness; I still have this idea that if I heard what I wanted to hear from someone (namely... the people I'm not getting it from for one reason or another: like 38 because she's not around or BFO because he is completely disinterested in being kind or gracious when interacting with me) that the void would fill.
By this point in the self-love journey I know enough that even if some magic brought me the attention I desire from 38 and loving kindness from BFO that the fix would be temporary at best. Finally, I realized the reason the love I'm getting from others isn't filling the void is because I'm not giving myself any of the love I so desperately want.
In a romantic relationship there is no way I would rather be loved than through a love letter. It's the perfect marriage of my love languages (gifts and words) and I crave it.
So, what if I write one to myself? What would that be like? What if I heard everything that I already hear from my mom, and Angry Wombat, and GT/Becky, and all of my other loved ones and what I want to hear from 38 and BFO and anyone else who was once in my life and now isn't... what if I heard all of that from myself?
Let's find out. Shall we?
Wow. I am in awe of you. Over the last several months, maybe even the whole time I've known you, when faced with things that often bring out the worst in people somehow you bring your best self to the table. You handle yourself with grace and dignity and are so impressively kind and generous with your love, time, and energy. I admire the strength of character you maintain when the stresses of everyday life grow and press against you.
I know that waiting isn't your favorite thing, and I know that it's been difficult for you to endure discomfort in the short term in the name of a long term payoff. I promise you, it's close! Really, you're there already!
As you approach and ultimately experience the rewards for the work you've put into the last several months I want you to see the beautiful life you've created for yourself and your son. I want you to know that I can see that these changes are in the name of living your true purpose and being who you are supposed to be. I can't think of a better way to be as a parent, friend, daughter, co-worker, citizen of the world... You are so incredibly courageous. I'm so excited for you to have new experiences in your new community and show the world how amazing I already get to know you are.
Even though I know what you're capable of, you continue to surprise me with every leap. You seem to be able to just decide and do something--it's not a common quality--but I know that doesn't always make it easy and I admire the ways you always look for what to learn from every stumble and frame your experiences in such growth oriented ways.
When I think about what I want for the rest of my life I know I want to experience as much love as possible, and I know that with your tremendous capacity for love I am going to get that with you. When I think about the company I want to keep and the type of people I want around me to learn and grow from, you're at the top of the list.
When I look at you I see a radiant beauty. I'm sure of that is your inner beauty pouring out, but even if you were evil you'd still be beautiful. I mean, that face... come on. Perfection! And let's not forget the hip to waist ratio, legs that go to heaven, and a heart shaped rear end. You're gorgeous, and strong, and I love everything about you... even the parts you don't always like.
You are the person I want to spend all my time with. I want to explore the city with you and delight in watching you experience new things and learn about what brings you joy. I want to do simple things with you just to enjoy your company and watch you develop new skills and talents. I want to read what you read, listen to what you listen to, watch what you watch, and go where you go, and then understand your reactions and impressions to it all.
You aren't enough... you are more than enough... you have it all and you are it all... and I love you.
xxSo, I actually wrote this to myself several days ago and have been reading it a few times a day... anytime I was feeling any lack. and... it's incredible. With it comes a longer lasting lift into peace and comfort than any outside source has ever been able to provide. I highly recommend it.
What would a love letter to yourself say? What kind of love would you long to experience? What would it be like if you could give that love to yourself? I invite you to find out.
I have been consciously rejecting what's on trend ever since I discovered that the ESPRIT bag I finally scored in 5th grade wasn't going to make me more popular without the Guess? jeans to go with it, so I'm going to follow Anderson's footsteps but I'm going see if I can do this in the most dramatic, obnoxious, and outrageous way possible...
|if Kathy Griffin is your BFF, |
do you really need to come out?
The fact is, I'm gay, always have been, always will be, and I couldn’t be any more happy, comfortable with myself, and proud.Oh no wait, that's what he said.
Here's my version: I am gay.
I am gay and I haven't been sure about the "coming out" process and how or if I wanted to do it because I really want to live in a world where the gender of the people we have intimate relationships with isn't of significant interest to others... but I know that me wanting that world isn't the same as me creating that world, and I know that honesty, transparency, vulnerability, and a dash of radical self love are the ingredients to bake that world.
I am gay and it is no big deal because I live in Los Angeles and hang out with a bunch of commi-pinko-feminisist-hippies. But there are a lot of other places in the world, and a lot of other people who live there who are openly hated because of this one aspect of who they are... and if there's anyone out there watching that who is ashamed or fearful and who would be made to feel more comfortable and confident about loving themselves for all parts of who they are by hearing that I am too... I'm up for that.
I am gay and just like any other part of what makes me who I am, I embrace and love it fully and imperfectly and am as proud of it as I am any other part of me.
Like I could really ever do anything that concisely...
and to affirm my absence of a need for privacy, it's time for...
Wait, what? I am gay.
How do you know?
- I fell for a woman. (and we made out)
- When I started thinking about having sex with women it went like this: 1st thought--goodness, I don't know about putting my mouth there, and 2nd thought--if I never put a penis in my mouth again it will be too soon. (sold)
- When I told my mom she said she wasn't surprised and when I asked why not she said that straight women don't say they are in love with Rachel Maddow. (oh, ok) and then I had a whole lot of other illuminating conversations with others that helped me discover that straight women don't think/feel many of the things I think/feel.
- I've always liked rainbows. (it's true)
- I have no interest in seeing the movie "Magic Mike." (none)
Then how do you know? The same way straight people know they are straight before they have sex. And the same way I know everything else I know. I just do.
Why didn't you say anything sooner?
- At first I didn't say anything at all because I wasn't sure (now I am).
- Then I didn't say anything explicitly because I am the middle of a divorce and didn't want to take any risks (I still am trying to get divorced, but he knows...).
- For a while, it didn't make sense to me to make an announcement about a sudden shift in the gender of person I want to have sex with when nothing else about me has changed (it still doesn't).
- Now even though I've gone beyond hinting and avoiding gender pronouns and it's pretty obvious to anyone who wants to see it, I didn't make any grand proclamations because I was afraid of how it would effect the people who love me (and I still am).
- See the next question
Were you in denial before that? I guess you could call it that. I honestly didn't know but it's mostly because I never asked. I was so focused on creating a perfect, happy family that most of the time I didn't ever consider if I was with the right person never mind the right gender of person.
So, why are you doing this now? I think I covered that up above. Something about being inspired by Anderson Cooper. That, and, I want to be able to share things like this on Facebook without people wondering where the hell I get off posting lesbian jokes (I am the one who hasn't talked about her feelings for 10 minutes, by the way).
Maybe you'r just bi. First, that's not a question... Second, yes, maybe I am. When all this first started going down (pun intended) I wondered if maybe I was having that experience I see my son have every year at Christmas and his birthday: he has a bunch of new toys and as a result completely loses interest in all of the old toys until a few months later when he realizes he can play with them all! ...I am pretty sure that gender is irrelevant for me when it comes to love. I fall in love with a person for who they are on the inside and the genitalia are pretty irrelevant to that end. That being said, at this point a man would have to be the most emotionally intelligent person on the planet for me to overlook the whole penis thing... it's possible.
|clearly born this way.|
Wasn't your dad gay? Yes. Maybe it's genetic. Feel free to ask me to participate in your research on that theory.
What do I do if this bothers me? Um... that's up to you. I'd prefer to be treated with loving kindness, but really you get to make your own choices.
Should I be worried about you hitting on me? Maybe. Are you hot? Kidding... Honestly, this was my top apprehension about coming out to my female friends and co-workers. I don't know where I got the idea that anyone would be concerned about this (I mean, who wouldn't want me to lust after them. I'm awesome), but it terrifies me... Even though it hasn't come up (yes, the above questions HAVE come up, I'm not just pulling them out of my fears like this one) and I've slowly gotten over my irrational fear, no--you don't need to worry about this. First, you're probably not my type. Second, I am terrible at flirting and am way too afraid of rejection to hit on anyone (especially a friend!) who hasn't already confessed their undying love for me.
So, what is your type? I tend to be attracted to a person with a gender-queen presentation (sometimes they call themselves "butch" women), although over time I have realized that my type is broader than I initially thought and basically includes anyone who I have completely subjectively decided is a badass. As long as I get to be the pretty one, I'm open to it.
Doesn't liking girls who look like boys mean that you just like men? No. Go read a book.
Can I set you up with my brother's, co-worker's, cousin's...? Sure... this is all brand new and I'm open. You should know (if you haven't already figured it out by reading) that I'm still pretty hung up on 38 (who is a woman, if you hadn't already figured THAT out)... So keep asking me every week or so? You know I process rapidly.
So, now what? Honestly, I don't know. If you think you might I'd love to talk about it. Sometimes I find not knowing to be very painful. I think we just carry on. Really, I'm the same amazing person I've always been.
Have a question that hasn't been answered? email it to me and you may see it answered here next week!