A Snapshot of Struggle

As some of you know, I’m heading to California later this month to work on a book proposal.  In preparing for that work, I was reviewing my journals from the past couple years and ran across this entry from November 9, 2014.  It is a snapshot of the struggle I was going through.  As I’ve mentioned in previous posts, I was sitting on the thin side of happiness, yearning to push through.  Spoiler alert:  I pushed through and I am now dancing in the light of a thousand angels.  Much love to you all.

Journal Entry – 11/9/2014
Why is it so scary for me to live my truth—to come out—at 53? Where do I start? Fear is all around me. Fear is like a preposition. It is above, below, around, beneath, beside and within. Fear lurks in the dark places, but fear also shows up in the light of day to distract my thoughts from all things peaceful. Fear is a ruthless pimp that whores my identity.

I’m gay yet fear has me second guessing my sexuality. I think to myself, “I’m gay, but I’m afraid to be gay.” This is ridiculous. “Be yourself.”, I say. “Be authentic. Be true. Be courageous.”

But the echo of fear from across the chasm of my consciousness says, “Shh. You cannot be yourself. Living your authentic truth will hurt so many people. You’re a sweet man. You don’t want to hurt anyone, do you? Shh.” The echo reverberates, and my true story gets muffled by fear. I want my truth to be a torch to light my destiny, but fear sucks the oxygen out of my world and extinguishes the light.

singyourtruth

A part of me has gotten accustomed to fear. Fear shows up every day with a persistent barrage of junk food that I know is bad for me, but I eat it anyway. At times when I’m not in the mood to consume the trash talk from fear, I find that I feel guilty. Guilty because how in the world could I be so brazen as to ignore fear and allow myself moments of respite?

It’s taken years for me to truly understand that every human being has the capacity to love without limits. We can be hurt, in pain, sitting in the mouth of fear, yet we can still love with our entire heart. I know that I can share my truth and live my authentic life and that people will have the capacity to love me. My fear is that even though people have the capacity for limitless love, they will choose to retract their love from me.

I am not naïve enough to believe that I can, after thirty years of marriage, come out and live my authentic life and everything will be the same.

As a matter of fact, I’ve reached a point where I don’t want things to be the same. I want relationships to change. I am ready for the lessons that are awaiting me in the transactions—but fear remains.

My struggle is one of spirit, mind, and body. I am a wreck. Some days I feel like my life is an empty tube of toothpaste, and I spend lots of energy trying to squeeze out just enough will to get me through the day. The stress is taking a toll on me. Migraines, hypertension and anxiety are symptoms of my stress. This fear—this struggle—is literally killing me.

Fast Forward to 04-16-2016
Each time I expose my heart I wonder what will enter and what will leave. What I’ve discovered is that by allowing courage to fully open my heart, I’m allowing healing light to enter and pain and fear to be released. The wider I open my heart the more the light can enter. Each time I tell my story with an open heart it liberates me. It’s a sacred transaction between God and me. It’s a beautiful thing.

I hope my story—my truth—will liberate many hearts.

Heart space open

In joy and love,
Jim