Saturday, November 30, 2013

What I Still Believe & Time And I Have Made Up

"Do you still believe in God?"
Hmm... I don't know. Yes? Yes, I think so.
"So, are you agnostic?"
Uh... honestly, I think I'm just apathetic? I know that sounds terrible... but I think it's the truth.
"What's your relationship with the church now? Do you still go?"
Uh... well, no. No, I don't. Honestly, I just feel like I'm just moving further from the church all the time. I still value it, and I'm happy if you're happy in your pursuit of it. It just doesn't feel like there's a place for me.
"Did you just leave it behind because it was easier?"
Well... probably yes. That's at least part of it for sure, because my life is definitely a ton easier without the church.

 These are some roughly accurate portions of some conversations I've had recently about my beliefs. Guys... I don't really know what I believe, and that stems from an apathy that kind of washed over me when I realized I was gay and that I didn't believe in the church anymore... at least not fully. A friend of mine recently commented on how despite leaving the church, he still believed in families being sealed. This baffled me at the time, but I think I've come to understand a bit of what he meant. While maybe he doesn't necessarily believe it works exactly the way the church teaches, he still probably believes that our families can be united into the hereafter. That sounds great. Why not believe it? I realized today as I was standing on a rooftop, putting up Christmas lights and enjoying the crap out of a fairly warm day with plenty of sun, that I think I still definitely believe in a hereafter. I believe that there is at least something about us that continues into the cosmos. Put in church terms, I think we do have some kind of a spirit that endures. I think this mainly because I think I've felt the presence of my grandfather after his passing. Which was a particularly powerful feeling because he died while I was on my mission. I missed the last year and a half or so of his life, and I didn't really get to say a proper good bye. As I write this, I think I'm realizing how mad I really was deep down about that. I knew the drill, though. I knew what was expected of me. I had to just keep my head down and work. Work for the church--build the kingdom--follow all the commandments--don't question the commandments--don't question the rules that pass themselves off as doctrinal commandments--don't think about your sexuality--never ever admit that you could possibly be gay. (Well that subject changed fast! Didn't it?) I just think the church is ridiculously rigid about a lot of things. Heaven forbid we let a kid fly home for a week of his TWO YEARS of service to say goodbye to someone that meant a lot to him. Literally... I think people in the church believe that heaven forbids that.

Ugh. Ironically this post was meant to be a pretty calm and casual listing of what I still believe! Now I'm all emotional! Moving on, nonetheless...

I still tend to think that the church has a lot of teachings on morals that are spot on. I think that generally following the commandments (the real ones, haha) leads to people being pretty good and well-rounded folks. This is leaving aside my feelings that people who are only attracted to their same gender should be given a lot more freedom to have the emotional connections that truly work for them. It also leaves aside the absolute fear of sex that is attempted to be instilled into church youth. I think I thought I was doing the most mature thing possible in shunning any thought of sex or sexuality. Nope... turns out it's actually most healthy if you allow yourself to gain some understanding of who you are and perspective on the value of sex by asking questions about these things. It won't kill you to let kids think for themselves and realize that sex isn't that big of a deal. In the grand scheme of things, it's just one part of healthy relationships.

I do also very very very much appreciate church teachings that are about serving others. Other-focused living is really the thing I want most to grasp on to as I pull away from my religious moorings. I definitely neither HAD nor do I presently HAVE an other-focused mindset that is the one I really want, but if I'm working toward it I'm happy.

I say I'm not bitter toward the church, but in many respects that's just not true. I do have things about the church that I'm bitter about. I think when I say I'm not bitter, I just mean that I'm not combative. I mean no outright war on the church, no desire to pull others from it (unless they're gay... haha... that makes me pretty evil probably... but it's the truth, because this is my honesty space, ain't it?), and no real compulsion to make it change. I just kind of want to step away myself.

 So, yeah. There's that stuff.

Furthermore, I have often said in these past few months and years that I was really upset that I'm so old to be discovering my sexuality. Ya know what? Who cares? I mean, yeah, I am a complete moron when it comes to dating. I have very little experience. But who cares? I feel more now like a deaf person that can hear. My past is my past. I had plenty of good times with how I was in the past, and I'm content with that. I'm just really happy that I know who I am now. I still have plenty of time. I'm enjoying dating. Even though I kind of have very little clue what I'm doing... I am enjoying it. I'm just being me, I'm learning, and I'm growing. Time, I forgive you, but I will also not waste any more of you complaining about how much of you has been wasted in striving to follow a religion that I followed so closely that it masked my true sexuality. So I'm done now. See y'all later.

(I'm not really sure what I've just written and I'm not going through to edit it at all... I'ma just leave it stand as a testament to however I've felt this afternoon.)

Sunday, November 24, 2013

Cynicism Killer & An Easy List

I'm just cynical enough that often times when something is blatantly trying to get me to smile and be happy... I will hate it.  (Once in primary when I was maybe 6 or 7, the sharing time instructor saw that I was upset about something and brought me in front of the whole primary so they could sing the "if all the little raindrops were lemon drops and gumdrops" song to me to make me happy. I, however, defiantly sat there with a frown, never giving in, and then returned to my seat when they finished.)  Though the above music video by Pharell Williams falls into the aforementioned category... I still love it!  The guy hopping at 1:40 and so many other moments are just tremendous.

My life isn't perfect... but I'm really starting to love it, and that is an incredible difference from where I've been before.  I've called it being happier than I've been in years, and it's the truth.  Though I still haven't found a boyfriend (obviously a process that could take me some time), I can't help but feel great about where I stand.  Looking up!  Not looking down in shame all the time.  Not burying my head in a blanket and crying.  Not turning off all the lights and sleeping through almost entire days because it was the only way I was comfortable living with myself.  Fuck depression! I'm kicking depression's ass.  Pretty stellar.

That said, I know that this euphoria might not last, but I think I'm equipped to handle a crash... if one happens.  I now have a strong support group that I know how to utilize.  I have many people who've offered to help. I have a lot more respect for myself, and I have the hope I mentioned in my last post that I could possibly end up truly happy.

I was asked by my date tonight what I want from a relationship.  To my surprise, a list of things started spilling out of me rather easily.  Apparently I've been thinking about it a lot!  I don't even know if I could recreate it now as easily as it came to me then, but here are some things I remember:

  • I am me.  I don't have any sort of act going on, because I don't need one.  My partner is so supportive that I'm at ease being myself.  
  • Not only that, but there is a general ease about the entire relationship.  We're both relaxed about where we stand together, and we both really know what our past, present, and, to the degree possible, our future entails and means.  
  • He is comfortable disagreeing with me and has an opinion of his own.  Certainly, I'm not saying we argue, (though that might happen if it's important enough, and I think that can be helpful so long as respect remains between us) but we can each be our own selves.  Together we can arrive at happy cooperative solutions to things, but it's not always my way or his way.  
  • It's a mutually respectful and balanced relationship in which we both contribute, and I feel both supported and needed.
  • Oh, and the sex is pretty damn great.  (That, too!)
That's actually fairly close to the list that I said.  I don't know if that really sums it all up (surely there are other things that are kind of givens like being able to laugh, to get away from it all sometimes, honesty, fidelity, and not being a drug or gambling addict; then other preferential things like not being a smoker (I just really really hate that smell), him being beautiful, obviously!) but I'm pretty satisfied with the list.  Pipe dreams that I get something that sounds so cordial and peaceful? Maybe, but I think it sounds fairly reasonable.  

I don't know why I shared that, but I did.  I guess I'm just saying to myself (because honestly I think that's why I'm writing tonight... it's for me still guys!  Sorry!  I'm selfish like that.) that I'm sorting out what I want and I might actually be ready for a real relationship should my guy find his way to me.  

K, enough of this shit.  Bye!

Sunday, November 10, 2013

Possibility Happiness & My Love

Guys, I'm just really, really happy.  I have finally accepted the possibility that I might end up truly, truly happy.  And that makes me happy.  (Your thought: Three sentences in a row that end in "happy?"  Who the Hell's blog am I reading?!!)

Something pretty simple, yet amazing, happened to effect this change.  I had needed so badly to see what being my true self (while being in public with friends) is like.  I had the chance to see it!  I have found some incredible friends that know the things about me that have caused me so much misery, and they don't judge me for them... and they don't treat me any differently because of them... they just are fun.  If you haven't found that for yourself, trust me... it's out there, and it's incredible.  If you are among these few great people who have managed to just give me a taste of you being you while I was being ME... thanks!

(Hmm... I feel like I'm really rusty in writing right now.  Oh, well!  Deal with it, bitches!)

I'm also happy because I came out to a couple work friends, and I have at least a couple people there that can allow me to be me.  I'm very relieved to finally have that, because for forty hours each week, I felt like I needed to keep hiding like when I was completely in the closet.  I don't want back in that stupid closet.  It's dark in there and it smells like mothballs.  (By the way... WHAT THE HELL IS A MOTHBALL?)

Oh.  So in this analogy, mothballs are secrets, and moths are happiness?

So, I've been thinking a lot about the one last step to being "truly happy."  Finding him!  Mr. Truly Happy.  This is a troubling thing though, as I worry that he might have the same love-style that I do.  When I fall in serious like with someone, I get this like ache for them in my stomach, they occupy a spot reserved just for them and people like them in my brain like a penalty box in hockey, and some other part of my brain is hell-bent on destroying any sort of hope that might fill that box.  I have this weakling sort of love that is all-too anxious to destroy any entity to which my hopes of love are attached.  Does this all sound crazy?  Well, it feels like I'm crazy.  Love should be losing yourself in the hope, being totally annihilated if it doesn't work out, and being reborn into some other relationship... right?  Or is that crazy to want, too?  I think the point is that I don't really know love, because I always sabotage it's growth in me by simply telling myself that I'm not good enough.  That seems to always be all it takes.  What if my Mr. Truly Happy is the same way?  What if his anxiety keeps him from asking me out because he somehow has deluded himself into thinking he's not good enough for the likes of me?  What if I miss out on him because I don't take the early steps to shout at that moron and tell him he's all I've been dreaming of...?  

Say something if you're out there.  I'll do my best to remind you always how beautiful you really are, how you're the best thing that ever happened to me, and how we both need to strengthen our love-styles and recognize that we're both worth it... we deserve love and happiness.  Truly.