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My Big Fat Life – Orlando Shooting & Church Activists

In Uncategorized on June 12, 2017 at 10:31 pm

A year ago 49 people were gunned down in a nightclub in Orlando. They were targeted because they were gay.

I don’t talk much about the LGBT community since I left it behind, but when I see headlines that scream of violence against those who are victims of hate crimes based on their sexuality my heart is reminded of the struggle of what it means to be gay in America. While it is true that gay people have it considerably better than in most countries, it still isn’t a very good threshold to measure progression when it comes to the acceptance of others based on who they choose to love.

I came across a Facebook page recently of a woman who claims to be an activist for God. Her name is The Activist Mommy. I checked out her page after someone posted a Change.org link regarding a plight to get her page removed from Facebook. I highly doubt it will do much because people still have a right to be an asshole in the U.S., and freedom of speech is a vital thread of what makes us so unique as a country. People have a right to their opinion, no matter how much a douche it makes them look. The perk is we get to see who people really are when it comes to such political and religious views, so we get to know who to avoid.

I read her page looking for some semblance of compassion or love, and it wasn’t a huge surprise I didn’t find any. I don’t think it comes to the surprise of any in the community that the church has long bred an attitude that tolerance is somehow acceptance. I don’t even like that word “tolerance” because it somehow equates patronizing in my mind. People who strongly believe in the church (I say church for a reason), feel it is their duty to show just how much they disagree with conceived sin, so they post memes on Facebook, make status updates, hit the like button on every article that validates their belief, and comments on news feeds. They shout a hearty “AMEN” each time the man behind the pulpit proclaims they are making a stand on sin, as though the louder they agree it equals wearing a badge of honor to measure their integrity. But… it’s not.

Even if you believe that being gay is a vile sin that you act upon, the bible is still very clear about how we are to love. In fact, the act of love is spoken more than any scriptures you might find to address that being gay is a sin, and yet it is the single most act that most people fail to do well. Whether in relationships, to strangers, our neighbors, and friendships. Heck, I will admit I often suck at being nice to people when I feel I am right about something and they are in the wrong. When we feel we are right about something, it trumps our ability to love actively. We get so fixed on being right, and proving it, that we forget there is another person involved in our actions; the person on the receiving end of our stand or response.

I don’t doubt that some of these people believe they are doing God’s work, and believe that they are making a change in the world. On the other hand I know they are not doing anything other than creating more anger, hurt, and validation that God is nothing more than an angry man who is more interested in hurting us creatures on a spinning blue marble, than loving us. Yet, isn’t love the basic foundation of His message? Let’s just believe for a moment that all people believe in God, but who would want to serve such an angry and quick to condemn deity unless we had the fear of eternal damnation looming over us? No one. That is why the message of love is the most important message of all. The simple act of love without condition is the hardest to do for us. Perhaps that is why it has been written about so often. The message has to be driven to us. Paul wrote letters to the church about it, and depending how you feel about the truth of the cross, God sent His son to show us. Just being kind to others can be a challenge, let alone loving others we feel are in the wrong. I also find that the actions people get most fired up are the ones they either struggle against themselves, or can’t ever imagine acting upon. The first lending to the belief that if they fight against it enough it somehow will create almost a hatred for it and therefore reduce the temptation, and the second because people always argue what they don’t understand.

Love isn’t “tolerating” or accepting the acts of another as correct or in alignment of our own personal convictions. It’s loving that person regardless of what we personally believe. Our morals are separate from the act of love. We can love someone and have no relationship with them outside of our feeling for them. In fact, at times that is the best for everyone involved. I love my sister, but I can’t have a relationship with her because I don’t agree with her choices. Her choices affect me when she chooses to use drugs. I don’t want that around me, or my family. But I do love her. I want the best for her, yet I know that a relationship with her is not the best for me. She does really dumb things when she uses, and has removed my ability to trust her judgement. Does that mean I am going to yell and scream some condemnation at her every time I see her? No. Does my lack of doing so somehow translate that I am accepting or tolerant of her choices? Nope. It means I love her, but I choose not to allow her choices to influence my daily life anymore.

I have spent a lot of time talking to people during my time in the community. I have asked questions, listened to stories, and hurt as I listened to the damage the church has done. A majority of people in the LGBT community have already heard the message. There is nothing new you can scream from a picket line or post on Facebook that is something new to them. Most of them were raised in the church and already know the message. Many of them are still Christians and long for a relationship in a church; for human connection. They have struggled in their hearts knowing the message of the church, and their natural attractions. They have been at war with themselves so many times, there is no new scar you can leave that will laid upon three more. What they haven’t heard enough of, is love.

Chances are if you move about in society, you have already come in contact with a gay person. The lady behind the register, the Dr. treating you at the hospital, the vet who cares for your pet, the stranger you bumped into at the store, the man behind the ticket booth at the movies who sold you your ticket to the movie you have been waiting to see for months…. you get the idea. Chances are you have already come into contact with someone who is gay. Did you need to know their sexual orientation to be kind to them? Of course not. The act of being kind requires no back story. It requires nothing more than consideration without prejudice.

Sometime ago I had an argument with my boyfriend. I can’t even recall what it was about because so much time has passed that whatever it was obviously wasn’t that life altering. It’s my nature to walk away when I get upset.I need to allow the logic to rise above the emotion so I can think clearly, and the only way I can usually get there is to walk away to a quiet space and just ride it out. It’s a good thing because I can be quick to say really shitty things when I get upset. I’ve worked hard to be more careful with my words, even though I don’t always succeed. The other reason is because I grew up not being allowed to show emotion, so I instantly just walk away because I am used to having my thoughts and feelings discarded. What I can tell you I recall about that day is when I stood up to walk away and he reached for me. He put his arm out, touched me and gave me a hug. I couldn’t even tell you what I was wearing that day, but I can tell you how I felt in that moment. One simple action that isn’t so simple when we are hurt gave me a sense of love, security and acceptance regardless if he was disagreeing with me or not.  He wasn’t showing me a message of tolerance, or acceptance, but love.

Just love.

 

The 49 people who died because someone didn’t know how to love:

Edward Sotomayor Jr., 34

Stanley Almodovar III, 23

Luis Omar Ocasio-Capo, 20

Juan Ramon Guerroro, 22

Eric Ivan Ortiz-Rivera, 36

Peter O. Gonzalez-Cruz, 22

Luis S. Vielma, 22

Kimberly Morris, 37

Eddie Jamoldroy Justice, 30

Darryl Roman Burt II, 29

Deonka Deidra Drayton, 32

Alejandro Barrios Martinez, 21

Anthony Luis Laureano Disla, 25

Jean Carlos Mendez Perez, 35

Franky Jimmy Dejesus Velazquez, 50

Amanda Alvear, 25

Martin Benitez Torres, 33

Luis Daniel Wilson-Leon, 37

Mercedez Marisol Flores, 26

Xavier Emmanuel Serrano Rosado, 35

Gilberto Ramon Silva Menendez, 25

Simon Adrian Carrillo Fernandez, 31

Oscar A Aracena-Montero, 26

Enrique L. Rios Jr., 25

Miguel Angel Honorato, 30

Javier Jorge-Reyes, 40

Joel Rayon Paniagua, 32

Jason Benjamin Josaphat, 19

Cory James Connell, 21

Juan P. Rivera Velazquez, 37

Luis Daniel Conde, 39

Shane Evan Tomlinson, 33

Juan Chevez-Martinez, 25

Jerald Arthur Wright, 31

Leroy Valentin Fernandez, 25

Tevin Eugene Crosby, 25

Jonathan Antonio Camuy Vega, 24

Jean C. Nives Rodriguez, 27

Rodolfo Ayala-Ayala, 33

Brenda Lee Marquez McCool, 49

Yilmary Rodriguez Sulivan, 24

Christopher Andrew Leinonen, 32

Angel L. Candelario-Padro, 28

Frank Hernandez, 27

Paul Terrell Henry, 41

Antonio Davon Brown, 29

Christopher Joseph Sanfeliz, 24

Akyra Monet Murray, 18

Geraldo A. Ortiz-Jimenez, 25

 

My Big Fat Life – How the Hell Did I Get Here?

In Uncategorized on April 13, 2017 at 11:57 am

Two days ago I woke  of those migraines that I can only describe as one that if Shakespere were to have written about a migraine, surely it would have ended in a tragic, poetic Elizabethean death. I slept all day, and all night, until it finally broke 6am the following morning, which was yesterday.

Yesterday I had a meeting at my attorneys office. You might be wondering why I would need to sit in the office of an aottorney since my divorce is now 6 something yeas out, but this was the attorney that has been a more than just a an attorney to me. She has been a good friend through some of my darkest of times in the last 10 years. 10 years ago this year,  someone commintted a crime against my family. I don’t want to talk about the details, because it is still something I have a difficult time discussing on a public forum. , It was something pretty shitty to have happen, and the horrible human was sentenced to nearly 13 years for the shitty choices. One might believe that when the offender goes to prison that the people left in the path of their fury can finally heal and move on, but that isn’t always the case, at least not in mine. I’ve had to endure moving numerous times to avoid the stalking from the people who believe in their innocence, sit at the department of corrections to identify my family in photos that were receovered from their cell when it came to light that someone had taken recent photos of my children and sent them to this horrible human. I’ve had to constantly advocate for rights of victims in our state, and deal with private investigators who were hired to find us. Not long ago, the sister of this horrible human posed as a teenage boy to try and friend one of my chilren on Facebook, claiming to be a heart patient, as he is, and sent him a phone number to text because “my grandmother only let;s me text, not talk”. When my son told me of this conversation, I was skpetical and posed as my son for an hour of the conversation. I asked questions that I knew I could fact check, and sure enough nothing this person said could be found to be truth. This person even went as far to tell me “his” birthdate was a mix of my own children’s birthdates. I knew whoever it was, wanted my son to text from his phone number so they could trace it. A quick trace of the phone number that was given,  was traced back to this horrible humans sister, and once again I had to contact police to go have a talk with her and remind her that she shouldn’t be aiding this human to locate us. Needless to say, it hasn’t always been a smooth 10 years, and while I would like nothing more than for all of this to be behind us, I have to constantly be on my guard. It’s not easy to trust others, always wodnering in the back of mind if I somehow relax if that will be the one time I wish I hadn’t.

So there I was a few weeks ago at a government agency handing over very personal documents to the receptionist regarding my children and their care, and the receptionist starts talking to me. At first I thought she was nice, but something quickly felt off about the conversation. She was asking questions about my children that I thought odd for a receptionist to ask. Like where did they go to school, and things like that. I looked puzzled, I am sure, but then she asked me if I recognized her. Of course I don’t because 10 years has passed, and not to be mean, but girl has gained a shit load of weight. When I told her her I didn’t, she called herself out as someone that knew this horrible person, and testified at trial as their character witness. I was floored. She then proceeded to explain to me that she believed in their innocence (keep in mind this horrible human CONFESSED their crimes)  and she then looked down at our address and proceeded to  ask more personal questions about my kids and where we live.  I will spare you all the inbetween details, because I am so exhausted from talking about it, but it ended with me removing the papers from her desk and filing a complaint.

Fast forward to yesterday.

I sat in the office of my attorney, and another attorny while discussed a plan to remove the records from the agency, and how to put in place a protectoin to keep my family safe from being tracked down, yet again. Now keep in mind, I came back to this area a couple of years ago because my son was really sick. I needed to be near people that cared about us, and I knew would be supportive during the emotional up and downs of everything going on. I still fly under the radar for the most part, but the few times I have seen people they have been very gracious, and no one has made me feel like I did that day in that office. I never expected someone to confront me like that, no less from behind at desk while they were at work. Why someone even still believes in the innocence of a confessed offender is beyond me, but shows the mindset of these people who obviously lack common sense. I feel like I am dealing with the human version of North Korea as a collective.
While I sat in the meeting I felt removed from everything. I sat there and found myself wondering why the hell I had to be in this situation in the first place. How the hell did I end up here? This took place 10 fucking years ago. When will the advocacy stop? When will I just be taken at face value that this happned to us, and people care enough to want to help when it is in their powers? Why do I have to tell my story once again, and exploit all the pain and shitstorm to get people to understand this isn’t a fucking joke? Why do I have to feel victimized all over again, and again to get people to step up? I wanted to stand up from the table and just run out. I wanted to rush home, load a UHAUL, and just disappear once again. I wanted to scream, cry, and pull an iconic movie moment from The Elephant Man and scream “I am not a monster!”.

Instead I shut down.

I shut down so hard, I became indifferent. Anyone that knows me knows that when I become indifferent, I am beyond angry. I am angry, hurt, exhausted, and it’s the only way I can cope with the overwhelming emotions of being dogpiled by circumstances. It’s not a pretty place to be, but it is the only place I can find a haven to shift into auto pilot and continue with my life. Once I hit indifference though, I am pretty much done. All the small battles, all the hurdles, everything.. just become something I no longer want to deal with. That’s the thing about me though, when I need to face something I want to deal with it. When there is an argument, I want to make it right. When I have done a wrong, I want to make sure I own it, but when I hit indifference, I am just done. Yesterday, I was just done.

I know I can’t always be done with this, and I know I will have to advocate along the way, but omg I just want a life. I want to be able to live, and walk freely without wondering if someone sees me and reports back to the powers that be that want to blame me for whatever wrongs they feel in life. I want to stay in one place, love one person, establish a life where I can make connections in my community and just be. I want to just focus on life ahead and not have to constantly advocate because of my past. I just want this to all be over and move on.

I was thinking about all of this earlier today while I was driving. You know my ex, the one who inspired this blog, knew of my past. I believed her being in law enforcement somehow was the polar opposite of this horrible human, and that her job defined her integrity. I was wrong, of course, but it gives a glimplse into the level of betrayal I felt when I had to kick her out. I don’t trust people easily, and perhaps you can now understand a portion of why. Loyalty, and honesty are the two paramount qualities I look for in people I trust into my life. Without those I have nothing. There is nothing.

So yesteray while in full shut down mode, I went into McDonalds to have lunch. This might not seem like a big deal, but I don’t typically sit in McDonalds on my own. Not because I hate sitting alone, but I just don’t like dealing with people face to face in public. I went becuase I wanted to feel something.. anything. I wanted to feel apart of a crowd, and just blend in. Instead I sat there looking down at my phone trying only to look up when I was done eating and notice that the place had filled up. I still felt disconnected and so I just got into my car and drove home in silence. I wanted to go to bed, sleep, and just escape to a dream state reality where hopefully there was unicorns and ranbows covered in butterflies. Instead I went home and tried to figure out a way I can have a normal life. When my mental list proved to a be a grand failure, I did decide that this just can not continue. As much as I tried to pull myself out of my funk, it just seemed to stick around like lint to a new sweater.

I don’t know what the magic formula is for someone to have a normal life after going through such a shitty thing. I keep trying to stick to the future and look at all the good that is taking place around me, and it sucks so hard that I hit my feet while jumping a hurdle, but I am trying. If I could find a way to shift all the shitty to something ppowerful and good, I would because I am tired of running away. I am so very, very tired of the sins of others suffocating the goodness of people and joy from my life. I feel super lost right now, and somewhat discouraged that perhaps this is it. This is my life forward on. I don’t want it to be. I want to live out my life list, and know what it is like to just “be”. I want what others have, to see beautiful things, see places, meet people, and write a story that is void of pain and betrayal. I want to know at the end of it all, that I was able to know there are people out there who aren’t interested in hurting me, or take advantage of my hungry soul for all the things that nourish it.

I want to write a happy story.

How the hell did I get here?

 

 

My Big Fat Life – Biopsy

In Uncategorized on March 9, 2017 at 1:27 am

Recently I had a biopsy. It was one of the more painful experiences I have had, and one I don’t wish on anyone. It was probably worse than the waiting for results, but the waiting certainly sucked.

I was convinced they would find something, thank god they didn’t, because my body has been an asshole. While I am super happy they didnt find anything, it still didn’t provide any resolution to help fix what’s seemingly wrong, so that part sucks.

During the waiting period I went through some self reflection as scenarios played out in my head. What if I was sick, who would take care of my kids? What about all the things on my life list that I haven’t done yet? Why did I wait so long to start marking things off, and what if they never came to pass? Am I happy, truly happy, where my life is now? I couldn’t give myself any answers either in the heightened moments of anxiety, other than through it all I was experiencing something I hadn’t really had before, and that was the support from someone I love.

In my life I have been through some pretty big situations, as we all have. I dont really know how many people tried to be there for me, as I had pushed people away in my need to cope and survive. I somehow believed love would only bring a level of vulnerability that would only weaken me when I needed to focus on being strong. That might sound backwards, but any attempts up to this point had only proven to be one big disaster after another. Letting go of people and relationships in the face of a storm was my nautral shedding of anything I didn’t deem as essential to survive whatever it was I was going through. In my mind it was the right thing to do,  not too much unlike people who are facing hypothermia and start shedding their clothing. When I read those stories I alwys think to myself “what the heck were they thinking?” but when you are in that place at the moment you truly feel like you are doing what you need to survive, no matter how backwards it is.

Years ago when I was reading Blue Like Jazz (Donald Miller) I had read something that resonated with me in a very powerful way. Donald writes:

“I’ve had about fifty people tell me that I fear intimacy. And it is true. I fear what people will think of me, and that is the reason I don’t date very often. People really like me a lot when they only know me a little, but I have this great fear that if they knew me a lot they wouldn’t like me. That is the number one thing that scares me about having a wife because she would have to know me pretty well in order to marry me and I think if she got to know me pretty well she wouldn’t like me anymore.”

Well if that isn’t my truth I don’t know what is. Things are far easier to maintain as long as things stay on a superfical level. There is no fear of getting hurt, being abandoned, having to nourish love when things get tough in other spaces of my life, or even having to think how my reactions might affect another. In all honesty, I become selfish to survive and knowing this has always kept me from even considering to be open to sharing life, really sharing life with someone else. I can’t honestly say I’ve ever truly been in love before now because of this. I have never truly been in a place to share life with another person up close and openly. I used to think this was the ideal way to live. My years invested in long distance, and shallow part time relationships is my testament to this truth.

While that is no longer my truth,  oftentimes I need to rewrite what I believe to be true, and it has been one of the most raw, true and beautiful chapters I have ever lived.

While I feel I was somehow given more time to finish writing the book of my life, I still feel like there are some chapters I need to start working on. The urgency I feel to start living and stop dreaming has felt a bit big at times, and I am not sure exactly if I need to really dive head in, or stop for a moment and remind myself that even if I never see a firefly that my life is pretty awesome right now as it is. I’m working that balance out, because I don’t want to give up on my dreams just yet. Instead I want to share them with him and be a part of his as well. I’ve never wanted that before, and perhaps that is the best part of it all.

 

My Big Fat Life – Prom Queen 

In Uncategorized on January 12, 2017 at 2:57 pm

Today sucks. I’ve spent a majority of my day in bed, nursing an emotional hangover of an all night marathon of crying about everything under the sun. OK mostly my life, but if I were to think about more, I’d have cried about the upcoming inauguration as well. 

Sometimes I wonder why people even have dreams about things they’d like to do or experience. I personally can’t help myself. I’m a romantic, passionate when it comes to love, and things I long to know. I don’t seem to lack any imagination or ability to desire things, I just suck at the execution, and it’s my deepest fear I will die never knowing what it’s like to have touched a lot of things I’ve always wanted. Those dreams that have carried me through some of the worst moments in my life, knowing that there are still fireflies to see and a love that doesn’t hurt, to find. 

I’ve lost my faith in a lot the past 6 years, God being one of them. I guess what I mean to say is my understanding of what my faith was in has changed. Hope has turned to cautious hope, and quietly I’m letting my dreams go. I wonder if they were even worth having; if it would be wise of me to stop wishing or hoping that I could experience or even have what other women seem to have happen so naturally. There’s days like today when the knowledge in such a shitty world that fireflies exist, used to carry me through, but the longer I go without having ever seen one, the more I wonder if I’ve been a fool the entire time, just wasting time on silly wishes. 

I really don’t want the world to hurt as much as it does today, but it does and even if I still had that fierce hope and belief that good things are coming, I’m not sure daydreams of fireflies could even pull me through. 

Today sucks.