I was cleaning my room today and I found my journal from just after I came out to myself. I read some of it, and wow. That thing is just full of pain. I'm glad I wrote it down, because it helped me work through so much of that. I am also glad that I don't have pain like that to fill pages and pages of a notebook. But it's good to see where you came from.
I liked how Finding My Way shared a journal entry, and finding mine made me think of that, so I thought I would share a post that isn't too dramatic or a tear-jerker. I remember writing this. I remember it was one of those first little seeds of peace.
Today when I would think about me and being gay, it felt like wise mind, exactly the way Kristi usually describes it. It felt centered and calm and right. It felt like I was standing in the eye of a storm. I knew what I knew. I experienced truth.
I think part of it is that I am trying to see through to who I really am. I am trying to discover truth. By looking this in the eye, I am trying to see beyond pretense. I am willing to drop the facade. I'm not lying to myself. It feels better.
I wonder if I can recall this when the storm gathers strength and shifts and spins me back into it. The problem with being in the eye is that you're still surrounded by the storm. The eye of the storm still isn't safe. And it doesn't last.
Sometimes I can say it out loud. I don't cringe all the time. For me, it is not always so big. I feel that I am being more accepting. I can feel that it makes sense. Most of my worry thoughts involve other people. I have a very deep fear of losing my family because I'm gay. I love my sisters and my parents. I love my niece and nephew so much! I couldn't stand it if they weren't a part of my life. Saying goodbye to them the last time I visited just hit that trigger, that there might be a time where there is a goodbye for good. The pain of that would be too much.
And yet, if I'm going to be honest, I have to be willing to possibly have that moment. There will be pain. There is pain on any path. There is also a chance that there is joy. It's still awkward right now, still ambiguous. And I still don't have to take any action. I just have to be willing.
I am who I am, and I think that I'm gay. It's a truth I have to face. I know that when I have felt willing to face it, I feel like some of the pressure is gone and the weight on my shoulders doesn't seem as much. Isn't that how you feel when you confess and stop lying after you have held something in for a long time? Isn't that how it feels to be honest? Free and right--not like you're diffing your grave and burying yourself at the same time. That's truth...it seems. I wonder if it will continue to feel like that in the days to come.
Right now though, I feel like I don't have to run away anymore. I can deal with this moment. And in this moment, it's just me and a pen and a notebook. The pen happens to be black. The notebook happens to be red. And I happen to be gay. I'm still me. Right now, I don't have to be anyone else. I don't have to pretend for anyone else. I can just enjoy a little break from that weight on my shoulders.
Nearly two years later, the weight has changed. It's not a crushing weight that I constantly feel. The weight that I do feel comes and goes, but when it comes, it's not nearly as heavy. I've gotten stronger. I know I have. I can be me, I can be gay, and I can be 100% okay.
That's an amazing feeling.