Saturday, February 16, 2008

There's No Place Like Home...

While watching a fun movie, I got thinking about the Wizard of Oz, and how it seems to be a good depiction of my journey. Picture it...A young Christian child from Missouri(Bordering Kansas...FYI) growing up in a conservative home in a small, black and white town. Everything he was ever taught about love was "one day, you'll find the perfect girl for you" and the only thing he ever heard about sex is "wait until you are will be more special when on your wedding night with the perfect woman." The ideology is meet, date, fall in love, get married with a big wedding, mom cries, dad is proud, 2.5 children, lovely house, and happy everafter.
Well, in comes the tornado of realizing my attractions, thoughts, and feelings and in the whirlwind of confusion and experimenting I end up being picked up from the black and white world I knew and landed in this entirely new place.
I was in the young gay man's "Oz." Uncharted, frightening territory where I was all alone. But the difference is, this Dorothy didn't have a scarecrow to give advice, a tin man to remind me I was loved, or a lion to show me how to be brave. Well after a relationship and my first year of college, I started to find my scarecrow, tin man, and lion...friends who helped me be me and realize that it's ok.
Well, then comes the forces of black and white, convincing me that my "Oz" was fun and might feel ok, but that it was wrong, and that I need to come home. They said there was no place like home, and that's the only place God wanted me. Enter Love in Action. Slowly and continually those vibrant colors of "Oz" were fading, and I was entering into the Black and White world...the color of the Bible's text, of course. I was told the yellow bricks and emerald castles were just illusions of happiness, and that only true contentment and joy came from letting the hues of certain aspects of myself go. They took my ruby slippers(and any "False Image" with the brand name Calvin Klein or Abercrombie) away, all while telling me it was for my own good.
After 6 months of this black and white mentality and being kept in the darkness, I had to take the courage I discovered through my lion. This led me back to Missouri where my tin men were...those friends who loved me and wanted me to be happy. They were willing to do whatever it took to help.
The hardest part was putting the Ruby Slippers back on and finding my way back home, to my "Oz." Sadly, I couldn't click my heels three times, but rather I had to use them to trek through fear, pain, hurt, and the unknown. I realized that everyone I have encountered in my life wanted to be my scarecrow in one way or me their opinion on what was best for me. Finally, after months into my trek, I realized that I have to be my own scarecrow. I have to find what is best for me and choose my own path, but I also take great pride in knowing that when the wicked forces of the world try to set me on fire, my ever-supportive friends will be there to help me quell the flames.
I am happy that I have found my own "Oz" and realize that it is so much larger and more wonderful than I could have even dreamed. Truly, there is No Place Like Home!


Murphy's Mom said...

I just read Wendi's column this morning. I expect you will get a lot of responses. Thank you for being strong and open. Delete any hate mails and go forward in love and be the best person you can be. And while you do, pray for my son who struggles with this same issue, and for my parents who would/will react in the same way yours did. And someday, when he comes to terms with himself and does not mind being open, I will proudly say to all: THIS IS MY SON AND I LOVE HIM!

Jacob said...

Thank you so much for your comments. I find myself in tears, seeing your love for son. It is amazing he has such a strong advocate and friend. If he ever needs someone to talk to, I would be happy to do my best to be there for both him and you...for what that's worth.

Murphy's Mom said...

I've never done this before. I don't know how to blog, or how to contact you. He only told me last summer, and I only want my son to be OK. Thank you so much.