Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Oh, Canada!

I just recently visited my friend Ken, whom I met at the Ex-Gay Survivors conference in Irvine a couple months ago. I traveled to Toronto, my second 'birth place.' to visit Ken and see the Gorgeous city one again.
Last summer, as I believe I have written about before, I attended Pride Toronto. It was a life altering experience for me. I found myself feeling more liberated and free than ever before in my life. This, being just months after my escape from the ex-gay entrappment, I was able to rediscover who I a person, as a young man, as a gay man.
My trip back was full of excitement and wonder. To start, I flew to Buffalo, NY, and was able to visit Niagra Falls. The cabbie and I had an amazing political he was a New York Democrat. I got a really cool take on my Lady, Hillary! He also told me that I could walk across the Canadian/American Border. Being the adventurer I am, I jumped on the opportunity.
The Horseshoe Falls and mist that rose above were gorgeous! I felt so free just walking across a bridge into a foreign country. However, the cabbie said that once I crossed it would be about a 3 block trip to the bus station. Well...Make that 3 miles! Well, let's just say it built character.
Ken greeted me at a Starbucks behind the bus station. It was so good to see a familiar face that was so welcoming. Toronto was already as wonderful as I had remembered it!

More to come soon on the Trek to Canada...

Saturday, September 22, 2007

...Call for action!!!

After watching the video Ex Gay Watch posted about the Republican Mayor of San Diego changing his views on gay marriage, and signing a resolution to have the city attorney file suit against the state, I was just in awe. This is why I love politics. One person can make such a huge impact, just by leading with their heart.
I find myself wanting to do something, to make a change, to fight for social justice, just as Mayor Sanders did, in such a majorly brave way. But, I am just one...what can I do? Well, thankfully, I am not the kind of person who actually believes least when it comes to politics and government.
I believe that Gandhi said it best that we must be that change that we want to see in the world(paraphrased.) Whereas the GLBT community has many vocal advocates and leaders, still a vast number of members sit back silently, while being opressed. I believe that we must follow the lead of people, like Mayor Sanders, who take unpopular stands, say unpopular things, and make unpopular decisions. This is where we come in.
I am the world's worst at following through with a lot of things, but I strongly encourage you to take action along with me by doing the following.

1. Write Mayor Jerry Sanders and email thanking him for his courage and conviction. you know that he will have a lot of critical letters from members of his own party. his email is This took me about 5 minutes to type a very heartfelt letter of appreciation and praise!

2. Write a letter to the mayor of your city and members of your city council strongly encouraging them to follow the lead of Mayor Sanders and the San Diego city council. I will be sending mine to Mayor Francis Slay of St. Louis hopefully Monday.

These actions will literally take a total of 20-30 minutes. That is such a tiny bit of time that can impact and effect such great change. Thanks for reading.

San Diego Mayor Supports Gay Marriage

Thanks to Ex Gay Watch for posting this video. Absolutely brought me to tears!

Monday, September 17, 2007

Roadmap of the Heart

When do you follow your heart?
When it is convenient?
When it goes along with the plans and expectations that family, friends, or even you have put on yourself?

Or is it just New Age Jargon? I mean…obviously the heart it just an organ made up muscle and tissue that circulates blood throughout the body. Why do we, as a society, as a world even, put so much emphasis on this figurative and almost mythical “entity.”

As skeptical and jaded as that may sound, I don’t subscribe to that belief. Believe me, I wish at times I did; however, I see the heart as a much bigger thing than just an organ. To me it represents my soul, my passion, my dreams and aspirations.

Right now, I am at a bit of a crossroads in my life. I see a few paths that I could take, and I see the path that I am currently on, steadfastly. The path I am on now provides me with security. I have family close, a good job that pays well, and for the most part I am self sufficient. And I am content…which is where I find myself a bit alarmed. I know I am happy about many things in my life, and I see that I am very fortunate; however, this current path I am on is not the one that I believe, in my heart, that I should be on. For example, I am currently making more money in my current job that I probably would my first few years out of college with my Political Science degree…as, my passion is to help people and work for change. Most of the jobs I am interested in are not the greatest paying jobs in the world…but they offer so much more than money can offer. To me, that is a feeling of not only knowing your purpose, but achieving it as well.

I want to go back to school. Honestly, I am scared too. My first year of school, I did well. Excellent grades, happy, etc. However, I have made a couple less than successful attempts to getting back in the swing of the academic world after LIA. I hate to blame it on anything other than myself, but I know that my depression has stopped me from achieving many goals and being successful in the academic world, thus far. There have been weeks that I can barely make it to class because of illness. Times where I cannot get out of bed. And my grades reflected it, as well as my withdraw from school.

I know that I have to do something with my life, as I am not happy with the status quo. It is not rewarding to me, and I am not following my heart. Enters the question: What the hell do I do?

Part of me wants to start fresh; however, I think that it may look like running away. I have also learned that happiness is created, it is not just a given when you move somewhere new. Another part of me is so scared to make a huge mistake, bite off more than I can chew, or even worse, fail. I know that failure is not the worst thing in the world. It is an opportunity to learn from the choices that led to the lack of success, and make changes; however, it still scares me to death.

Another huge issue for me right now is that I just got a promotion at work. Honestly, a promotion that I did not want. I feel as if I was very pressured into taking it. I am so worried about stepping down from a manager position to an Assistant Manager or even lower for a few reasons: 1.) The pay cut would be large; 2.) I would let down those who entrusted me with such a large responsibility (really…they are letting a 21 year old manage a multi-million dollar store!) 3.) I see that as letting everyone else see that I couldn’t cut it. I believe these are legitimate fears; however, I also know that I shouldn’t let what others think dominate my life.

So, right now, I have decided I have to listen to my heart….yes that mass of muscle that pumps blood to all regions of my body. I guess that the heart is what keeps us living and going…one day at a time. So why is it ridiculous to want to follow your ‘heart,’ that is made of your soul, passion, and essence your life…you know, the life that the organ heart sustains day after day. I guess it isn’t ridiculous to follow your heart…now we just need to find a Roadmap of the Heart.

Sunday, September 16, 2007

Sending out an S.O.S!!!

I know many of you who read my blog, thus I know that many of you can relate to the feeling of being alone, rejected, damaged, or even "fucked up." To all readers with virgin ears, I appologize for the use of the F-Bomb; however, in a very recent conversation with my mother(oh, five minutes ago) that was a term she used for me and my life. I am a pretty strong person; however, my family knows exactly what buttons to push to send me spiraling down into a very dark place, regarless that I know the truth about myself to be otherwise.
The conversation began with a conversation I had with both my mother and father today, at different times, about feeling like I am in a rut. I feel as if, like my last post stated, I am not living up to my full potential and not doing what I want to with my life. I have had intentions since leaving Love In Action to get back in school full time and continue pursuing my education in the field where my passion lies. Thinking my parents would be happy that I am looking to better myself and follow my heart, they instead chastised me. It started, like clockwork, with the "I told you so..." speal. First about moving to St. Louis, then about buying my car, then about school, etc. From the conversations, I realized that life would have been SOOO much better off had I just listened to my parents...according to them, everything I did against their will is what has caused my life to be "fucked up" and for me to be in the sticky situation I am in.
Please keep in mind that I only called to gauge their opinion about possibly stepping down from my management position, cutting back in some areas(not as nice of a car, cable, etc.) in order to live more simply, so that I could get back in school and work toward doing what I love.
I should have known better...silly me! Talk about opening the flood gates. To sum up the last conversation with my mother, that resulted in her hanging up on me(although I sooo wanted to hang up on her first!) picture this: (This is a very abridged version of her side of the conversation) "I told you, you fucked up your opportunity, you won't ever listen to anyone, you need to be on your meds(which, for the most part I am, btw) you won't tell your doctor what's wrong with you(meaning the conditions SHE has diagnosed me with...along with the meds I need for it), and I don't know WHAT you are up to, but I know you are doing something that I do not approve of(insinuating something to do with the whole 'gay' thing)
My response may not have been the most mature; however, I maintained a civil tone and shared how she was making me feel(which she replied bad, why was I thinking that I COULD have feelings in a conversation that she had already turned around and made about her!) I said, replying to the whole "Something that I do NOT approve of" remark that maybe I should go watch a few SNL Church Lady clips to find out EXACTLY what it is that she didn't approve of again...since I must have misplaced my list(Cue phone being slammed on her end!)

I guess I just really needed to share. It takes a lot for my family to make me feel this crappy, but I am finishing this post in tears...feeling a bit defeated. I guess my S.O.S. is for those of us who just could use a hug. Consider this post my *hug* to all of you out there who may be feeling a bit (--Insert feeling word here--)You are loved.

Saturday, September 15, 2007


According to Rick Warren, we all have a God-ordained purpose. However, Warren focuses a lot on the afterlife and what ‘Christians’ are supposed to do to achieve that. I find myself wondering what my purpose is RIGHT NOW….as a human, an American, a being in this universe that believes with all my heart that I am not just here for myself, but to make an impact somewhere…somehow.

Well, I don’t really know exactly what my purpose is, or whether or not I know exactly what I mean by purpose. I personally think that the definition of purpose is summed up pretty well by the first few lines of the “Avenue Q” soundtrack, which goes as follows:

“Purpose, it’s that little flame, that lights a fire under your ass;
Purpose, it keeps you going strong, like a car with a full tank of gas…”

I know that, as I have stated before, I am content in my situation, but I am not sure that is enough. I don’t have that flame that ignites passion in my life.

If you ask any of my friends, I tend to be a very ‘big picture’ type of guy; however, I am in a rut of seeing myself as one very small person in an arena that requires you to be a giant in order to effect the tiniest amount of change. I don’t like this mindset, at all and I am trying to figure out how to get over it.

How do you define your own purpose? Is it already set for you, or do you decide it via the decisions you make daily, large and small?