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equal rights

Is Transitioning Becoming Too Easy?

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I realize that this may be a touchy subject, so I’m going to make it clear right away that I mean no disrespect to anyone.  It isn’t really my style to purposely hurt anyone or to judge anyone. My intention right now is to delve into a topic of discussion that I’ve had recently with a few people close to me.

As a butch woman, I have to deal with a great deal of prejudice from a lot of people. The direction from which this prejudice comes is sometimes astonishing to me. Other lesbians who are more of a feminine persuasion and are attracted to the same type of feminine woman have a tendency to talk to me like I’m dirt sometimes. They do not understand me and often go out of their way to say things like, “you are just trying to be a man” or “if I wanted to be with a man, I’d choose a man” and so on and so on. I’m not going to get into all the things that being butch means, but it certainly does not mean that I want to be a man. I consider myself to be a combination of masculine and feminine energy that compliment each other in ways that bless me in my life. I feel that I’m lucky to be me.

I’ve grown to believe that sexuality is a very fluid thing.  I believe that we are all capable of loving men or women, regardless of who we are. We may never act on it, but I honestly believe that many people would if they hadn’t already been taught by society that it is somehow “wrong” to do so. I also believe that this early programming has seriously affected lesbians in many ways. Sexuality simply cannot be placed into a box of choice.

I believe that many years ago, lesbians thought that they had to give-up their femininity in order to be gay. It was almost expected that women act more masculine in those days because they were a lesbian; society had a vision of what a lesbian was and that was anything but feminine. Many women felt they had to give-up dreams of having children or families in order to live up to some sort of ideal. Only in the last twenty to thirty years are we realizing that we don’t have to choose one or the other. We can be lesbians and be parents. We can paint our nails, wear heels or we can wear jeans and a ball cap. We truly can have it all.

As we (lesbians) have evolved, there seems to have become some sort of a split with many sub-groups. There are now so many labels that I personally cannot keep up with them and I certainly imagine that heterosexuals are confused as well. Being butch, I’m noticing that more and more butch women are gravitating towards transitioning from female to male in larger numbers than ever. I notice that there is a rise in interest in binding, top surgery and a desire to even mimic male behavior patterns more so than ever before. I’m a little puzzled by this because I’ve always been proud to be lesbian and even more proud to be butch. I’ve always felt that I was better than men because I could embrace the masculine while having the brains to know better behavior. I am comfortable with my masculine nature but I am also very comfortable to be a woman underneath it all. I embrace my softer side; the part of me that enjoys cuddling and having a good cry from time to time. I feel that I have managed to take the best of both worlds – male and female – and make them uniquely my own. I believe in respecting women, holding the door for them, getting the chair for them and holding them in only the way a butch woman can. I also believe that it’s okay for me to cry, be soft and enjoy putting my head on someone’s shoulder sometimes and showing my vulnerability. This makes me feel whole.

My concern is that because transitioning is so easy to do now (and so common) that it may just be too easy. Just like Botox and boob jobs, people now think nothing of taking “T” and growing a beard. Honestly, I’m concerned that someone in their twenties is not fully equipped to make this decision. Before some of you get your boxers in a bunch and tell me that the difference is that you see yourself as a guy in the mirror, let me cut you off and tell you that there was a time that I did too.

You see, when I was much younger I considered whether or not that the choice to transition would be right for me. I didn’t take it lightly and I went through a phase where I probably had “penis envy” in a way. I used to think that I was in the wrong body but not because I truly felt that way on my own – society was making me feel that way. I am saying that I was slowly conditioned to look at myself the way others did…I had short hair and I had big hands and feet. People assumed I was a man and still do. I’m often called “sir” out in public. The fact is that it doesn’t bother me. I am secretly pleased to know I am a female underneath it all. By the time I was in my thirties I had come to a point where I learned to like myself exactly as I was.

I think all human beings go through this phase, but because it has become so popular to blame our sexuality for unhappiness, many butch lesbians think that transitioning will make them happy or whole. I’m not entirely convinced that this is the case for most. That said, there are people who honestly do need to transition in order to live a whole life;  they are truly mentally the opposite sex. I’m not disavowing anyone here. I just wonder if it has gotten too easy, like taking Xanax instead learning to deal with your life? Has transitioning become the latest plastic surgery fad and is it being done because doctors see it as a way to make a lot of money? Are we making it too “cool” to do?

I worry that fewer and fewer women live as butch because they don’t see that as a viable option anymore. Pressure from society and from those we might hear referred to as “lipstick lesbians” make us feel unwanted by our own community at times. Is this what makes us feel that the only option is to conform to what the world thinks we should be? I wonder where are the proud butch women now? It seems they are being replaced by a younger generations of “bois” and female to males in transition. I’m concerned if this is because we are placing too much pressure on young butches, making them feel that they need to be something other than what they are. I’d love to hear comments from others on this.

Again, I stress that I am not in any way trying to talk bad about those who choose to transition. I’ve always been very supportive and have friends who are in transition and are fully transitioned. I just feel that this is a valid argument that needs to be discussed and I wonder if we need to be having this discussion more openly rather than just automatically telling our friends to go ahead and transition?

A friend of mine has a friend who is in the hospital right now, possibly dying from an infection that is the result of a compromised immune system – a side effect of transition and hormone replacement therapy. This happens in some cases, as well as other medical complications. There are also many other things to consider, such as never being able to afford bottom surgery – which is also not perfected yet. Someone may start the transition and never fully complete it for many reasons. Personally, I could not handle being in this sort of sexual limbo or giving up sexual satisfaction…which is the case most of the time. I’d really like to hear the opinions of my readers on this. Please, keep it respectful as people from all walks of life read this blog. Thanks!

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Categories: equal rights, gay lesbian, lesbian | Tags: , , , , | 30 Comments

Everybody Look! What’s Going Down??

My day started-off having some fun with a fella who thinks he knows everything. Let’s put this into perspective for you…let me set the scene, so to speak. A couple of days ago, I posted a link for a book I was giving away free for a few days. Other Amazon authors can back me on this and I’m sure they will. When you publish a book on Amazon, you get five days each quarter that you may give this book away for free on their site. Does this put any money in your pocket? No!

Some people argue that it improves your book’s ranking…and it may…but only for a couple of days. The biggest thing that we get out of it is the exposure to new people who may not otherwise read our books. That is it; nothing else to be gained and certainly nothing financially. Sometimes, I’ll see a short increase in sales of my other books. That just tells me that they enjoyed my book and may like to try another. Great…but I’m still not getting rich by selling a few more books in comparison to the loss you take in the books you give away. I have away 192 copies of this book, this time. That is about 400 copies of that book alone, this year.

So…this fella comments on the link, “so in other words..you want the cash.” Now, I rarely use the word stupid…but I think it! After a few comments back and forth, I let him know that I’m really just trying to get the book in the hands of suicidal people or people who KNOW suicidal people. It comes out the he is an accountant. Wow…really? You are an accountant and couldn’t figure out that FREE equated to $0 and that 192 multiplied by $0 is …ummm ZERO? I imagine that he is online so much because business is slow?

The fact is that I don’t care what this guy thinks of me. I am not concerned with the people who do not care about the things going on in the world. I am not going to waste my time trying to change a shallow mind. What I am seeking are those who have an open mind. Are you troubled with the world the way it is? Do you question your own existence and your purpose? Do you want to know what the meaning behind your life is or why you are constantly besieged by challenges that seem completely overwhelming? Do you question pain? Do you feel like giving up but just know that there is a reason that you don’t – even when you can’t explain it? YOU are the person I am reaching out to!

We cannot change everything over night, but we can make a difference. It takes one step at a time and the first BIG step is to realize that we are all connected. You are a miracle. Look at yourself in the mirror. Your body completely replaces every SINGLE cell every three years. Your skin is completely replaced every few weeks. At the very molecular core of your being, you are unique and you are a miracle. Everything had to happen in completely unique and random order so that you were conceived to begin with. Do you have any idea HOW MANY random things had to happen just for you to be conceived? To be who you are? Your entire life is a movie that plays out with multiple plot twists, all based on the decisions that you make and the roll of the dice. You spend your entire life being prepared for your destiny!! I do not care who you are or how bad things have gotten … you my friend, are amazing and you deserve to be here.

It is said that when you remain quiet, that you take the side of the oppressor in any situation. I used to be silent. It wasn’t until I found my voice that I began to feel free. The more I told people about my own situations, the easier it became to accept and sort through those things in my life. I realize that I’m lucky. I realize that I am the end result of a billion different possibilities that ‘could have been.’ You are no longer a “could have” you have become a “you are” and the sooner you realize that, the sooner you will realize your own potential.

What do you choose to do with this knowledge? This is truly a personal decision and I don’t knock what anyone chooses. I WILL say that when you have the opportunity to touch others and you choose not to, I feel it is a sad waste. That’s my personal feeling and has become my personal decision. That isn’t a judgment at all, so please do not see it that way. It’s just that there is so much beauty to be gained in reaching out to others. I refer to humility all the time. I think when we have learned true humility, that we become more selfless. I don’t see it as a bad place to be. That’s my personal take. Yours may be different and so be it. You won’t hear my messages or my voice.

I’ve committed myself to a few causes and they all are about human interests. One of my pet projects is the “Shadows In Your Face” project. I’ve decided to take the next year doing research, filming and even staying in shelters and even a few nights actually on the street. I will be doing my best to expose the way that the homeless are treated like cattle, herded into facilities out of view and how they are often pushed out of the way and not really helped by the very organizations that claim to be helping. City governments work to appease the wealthy by ‘getting them out of view’ and shuffling them to other cities and locations off the beaten path, where they are often forgotten. The system isn’t designed to help these people and their civil rights are often tromped on, while they are treated as a problem and not treated as people.

This video was shot with my cell phone, in the dark – so it’s not fantastic quality. This is just a glimpse of the world that is there in front of your face. There are MANY people living in parking lots in their campers. Many more of them are sleeping the cars that you see parked here and there, in between the campers. It’s a whole ‘underworld’ of people who have been hit hard by the economy.

It is important for me to point out that when the documentary is made for sale to the public, that every penny will go to aid the homeless in some way, whether with clothing, food, shelter or much needed medication. I hope to make a difference, even if it is just for a few people. To me, this will make the entire year worth it. I’m not doing this for myself in any way at all. I’m doing this to put the issue – the people who live in the shadows – right in your face. For the last year, I’ve met many homeless people and I’ve done my best to pass on their stories here. Now, for one year, I will make it my focus. I’m attempting to raise money right now, for the things that I’ll need to make this happen. I need cameras, some editing software and a little money to cover the few expenses that will surely arise. I’ve set the goal at $10k but I know this is lofty. I plan to go forward with the project no matter how much I raise and I do have other fundraiser in the works.

I am seeking fiscal sponsorship to help control the funds of the money from the project. I’ll be picky, but hope to find a non-profit that will help me handle the funds in a way that sees to it that the money is spent in the best ways possible and ensure that 100% of the funds go to the people who need them and not to administration costs.

I’m asking that you take a look at the project and try to see the potential good that could come from it. If you have anything to offer at all…used equipment, assistance in spreading the message, connections with other homeless person projects, etc…get in touch with me. Maybe you are someone who just has time and can help to spread the word somehow? I’m open to all suggestions. One way or the other, this project IS going to happen and I will not be deterred.

Categories: American government, equal rights, Homeless people, life lessons, love, Politics | Tags: , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Shadows In Your Face

 

Far too old to be living like this, but don't tell him that. He's happy. He sleeps in his truck in parking lots all over North Florida.

Far too old to be living like this, but don’t tell him that. He’s happy. He sleeps in his truck in parking lots all over North Florida.

 

Many of you have followed my excursions for a good year now. You know that I try to keep things as real as possible. I’ve shown you all some of the good things about life and some of the things that truly stink sometimes too. In the end, I’ve always tried to keep my messages positive. I do believe that life is what you make of it.

That said, when I went through my horrible year last year, I was reminded of how much we all depend on each other and how hard like can be. I felt that God himself had spoken to me and I came to an immediate realization – an epiphany – that I’d wasted a great deal of time that I hadn’t put to good use. I made a promise to myself and to the Universe that I was going to work harder to help others. My purpose is now to do what I can to help others and speak for those who have no voice of their own.

I’d like to tell you about my latest project. This is in alignment with my goals and my passions. I’ve decided to put my author skills to work on a project of almost epic proportions. I’m going to re-enter my life as a homeless person, in order to tell the story from their point of view. How can you tell someone about being hungry if you have never truly been hungry? How can you describe the fear of having no roof over your head if you have never known this fear yourself?

Not only am I going to do a book, but also a documentary while I am living in the life. When I am finished, there will be a book, a documentary and a photo book complete. ALL PROCEEDS FROM THE DOCUMENTARY AND BOOK WILL GO TO THE HOMELESS. The money will go to organizations that help to feed, clothe and provide medication to those who are homeless. I will be very selective over who gets funds; making sure that 100% of the money goes to the people that it is meant for. If not, then I shall set-up a separate charity entirely for this purpose.

I’m currently working on some products for sale to help raise money for the documentary. I’ll be opening a Cafe Press store to the public in a few days. I’m working on product designs at the moment. I have an IndieGoGo campaign set-up to take donations at the above link. I implore you to consider helping this project come to fruition. Not only will it bring to light some of the issues happening with the homeless community, but it will also help to set in place some programs that can offer more assistance to these people. Too many are falling through the cracks because they can’t qualify for help. Some can’t even seek traditional help because of mental issues that prevent them from even trying, much less even being aware that there is help available for them.

Today, I simply ask you to take a look at the campaign page and to do one of two things: 1)Donate if you can or 2) pass it along to others who may be able to help.

Thanks for your time and, as always, thanks for reading!

 

DONATE HERE

Categories: equal rights, life lessons, love, Politics, self-help | Tags: , , | 7 Comments

If I Told You That I Loved You

 

HEarts777

 

I wonder if I looked into your eyes if I’d see admiration, kindness and love?

Would you make me feel there’s nothing I couldn’t rise above?

When you look back at me, are the thoughts clearly written here upon my face?

Is it so very out in the open, the way I’ve felt this fall from grace?

If I told you that I loved you would it make you stop to change direction?

Would loving you make each day make it worth sharing a connection?

Should I put all my faith in you and trust that you are strong?

Or am I such a stranger to you that the feelings are all gone?

Today I choose to follow the path to making this world much clearer,

So I’ll look again and smile joyfully, saying “I love you” into a mirror.

~ Jesse MacGregor-Jones

 

This is for all of you who forget that the most important person in the world that needs your love is YOU! Always be kind to yourself, knowing you’ll make mistakes. Life is about learning and growing, for none of us was born perfect! Today, look at yourself in the mirror and find one thing to love, even if it is simply the fact that you had the courage to look yourself in the eyes.

Categories: equal rights, life lessons, love, self-help | Tags: , , , , | 7 Comments

Faith – What It Is To Me

 

Faith meme

 

 

 

I want to try to clarify some things about my life and my perspective for all of you. Many people write to me and want to “cheer me up” and give me pep talks when I talk about moving on, breaking up or things from my past. When I tell people that I’m fine, they don’t seem to believe me sometimes. In fact, I’ve been told by some that they do not understand how quickly I bounce back nor how I can move on and remain so positive. Well … let me try to explain it to you. I’m not really sure if I can, but I am going to try.

For starters, let me say that faith does not have to be centered around God if you are not comfortable with that. I believe that it is so much more than just God! It is about being connected to everything around you in a way that is spiritual but can be proven scientifically also, for those of you who are skeptics. Everything around us is made up of microscopic particles. Neutrons, electrons and ions surround you and ARE you. There is no such thing as a straight line. Anything under a microscope shows that lines are blurred. Why? Because molecules are moving, cells are not perfect shapes and everything is constantly changing, replicating and evolving before your very eyes. Nothing stays the same and everything is made up of the same particles.

When you consume food, you consume cells and these microscopic particles that have already been charged with energy of some sort. This is basic science from elementary school. Dig deeper, think harder, feel more…. you’ll realize the implications that everything on this planet and in the universe is connected. Right this moment, I’m surrounded by carbon dioxide that has been expelled by billions of other people. Quite possibly, I’m breathing oxygen that was created by a house plant somewhere in London. It is possible. We’re all breathing the same air, sharing the same sky, the same planet and the same solar system. We are mere pieces of an astronomically large puzzle, my friends.

Doesn’t it make sense if were all were to just get along that we’d all be healthier? Scale it down. If cells in your own body begin to fight against each other, what do you have? Sickness, illness … cancer and other things. So when harmony is removed and other things are allowed to take over, bad things happen. Right? When the body no longer maintains homeostasis ( balance and the ability to maintain itself correctly ) then the body becomes ill. The same thing happens with society, with the planet and with the entire universe. It isn’t such a big jump to understand that every single thing that you do in your life will touch the entire world. No matter how insignificant that you think you are, you are very important! The carbon dioxide that you expel is helping a plant somewhere on this planet. In your lifetime, you’ll be responsible for keep many of them alive. It’s symbiotic. They need you and you need them. Therefore, we all need you! You are part of the puzzle of life.

Even when you die, your body doesn’t disappear on a molecular level. Your molecules are changed, but they carry on. Part of you is here forever and can be carried on into water supplies, rain, in the soil that will grow vegetables for someone else – even a million years from now. So you see…it’s all bigger than just you … yet it is all about you.

My entire life I have realized that I was a deeper thinker than most people. I also realize that I’m very intuitive and more ‘spiritually connected’ than a lot of people are. There’s a side of me that I frankly cannot explain to you. I’m very perceptive of my environment, nature, people’s feelings and the way EVERYTHING is connected. Everything I explained before … its almost as if I can see the connections in bright colors all around me at times.

We are all connected to each other. We are all part of a greater ‘whole’ that most never feel. Either because of your life or your beliefs, you have shut it out. As children, we were all open to it. Do you ever remember having dreams of flying? My friends, this is because your soul certainly does. As we grow up, society and our so called civilization teach us that these things aren’t possible. We learn things like judging each other, hate, anger and we lose our belief in the things that would mend the wounds that are caused by this world. People are taught to lose their faith, hope and dreams by the world around them, yet time and time again they are shown how to come back to it….but many never do.

Last year, in the month of August, I was given a chance to look at my life through a new set of eyes. I call it ‘my epiphany’ and I’ve been inclined to tell people that I heard the voice of God. Here’s the thing…I heard something. Whether it was voice inside of me, a voice outside of me … or something from the matrix, it changed me forever. I’m not the same person and I never will be again. I don’t want to be!

In the time it took to blink my eyes, my life came fully into view and perspective. In one small moment in time, I realized that time is not linear and that my life had shown me opportunity after opportunity that I’d not taken advantage of. I saw the ways in which I could touch other people. Things flashed in front of me as I stood there. Everything became suddenly as clear as a crystal and I knew beyond the shadow of a doubt that I wasn’t living my life for me! This is so much bigger than just me! I realized that I will receive true happiness and growth by helping others and by giving what I can to this world. In being alive, I take daily. I take oxygen, food and resources from this planet. It is necessary that I give back. One act of kindness can create thousands more in the people that it touches. It’s part of the spiritual pact we make with the universe for being here. Whether you want to be a part of it all or not, you are – there’s no choice in this. You’re only real choice is how much you choose to participate in this life and be the best that you can be. Happiness isn’t a destination! Happiness is the journey. Faith is about knowing what it takes to be happy and understanding that it isn’t truly about you.

When someone does something to me that I should be angry about, I choose not to get angry anymore. I remove them from my world and/or my space. I might try to teach them, but part of the wisdom that you acquire from life is to help you understand that you cannot always make someone understand something. Their path requires that they learn lessons on their own and when they are ready. You can’t force it. Learn to know when to walk away. This is best for YOU and best for maintaining that homeostasis that we talked about – both for you and the planet. When you realize that nothing is meant to personally harm you, but only to teach you and make you better, it becomes very hard to hold onto anger. For me, it is easier to just say to myself, “okay … lesson learned.” Then I move on. I shed no tears anymore over these things.

Do I have bad days? Why certainly! I don’t think I’d be human or have a soul if I didn’t cry sometimes. My tears are merely different now. I don’t cry because I feel sorry for myself or because I want anything different than I have. I cry from exhaustion sometimes and I cry when I’m confused about decisions I need. I cry when I feel hurt, because regardless of the things I’ve pointed out in the last 1364 words, as a human being I will get down and I will feel hurt from time to time. I’m not perfect by any means. I’m evolving and my cells are changing this very moment.

The wonderful part about faith is that I am able to put it all into perspective quickly. I know, beyond the shadow of a doubt, that I am where I’m supposed to be, learning what I’m supposed to be learning and doing things that will affect other people on this planet for hundreds of thousands of years. That’s a pretty huge responsibility. Perhaps if more people realized this, they’d be better people? Then again, they are learning their lessons, the way they are supposed to and in the time frame that they are given. I’m okay with that. Faith makes me okay with things. Again, perhaps I’ve made zero sense to you at all tonight but I hope that I’ve at least given you some things to think about?

It truly is all about perspective. Try looking at your life from a different perspective and put yourself in the shoes of other people too. Be a little kinder and in the end you may find that you are stronger for it. In learning about others, you’ll realize that you grow to know yourself. We are truly all in this together and love really is the answer.

Categories: equal rights, life lessons, love, self-help | Tags: , , | 15 Comments

Falling Into The Abyss

I wanted to take the time to remind everyone that my latest book is out. “Falling Into the Abyss” deals with child abuse and how it can touch your life forever, if you let it. Even when you think you are a survivor, something may just come along and remind you that you have things you haven’t truly dealt with.

 

 

“A tale of child abuse, suicide and survival. An account of surviving the worst things life can throw at you and coming out on the side, changed for the better and able to look at life with new eyes and a new perspective. This is my story. I’ll take you from the the time 

I’ve shared my life and my journey with thousands of fans through my blog at butchramblings.com and now I tell the whole story, with all the background. See how I came out and got to where I am today. Learn why I advocate for those who have no voice.”

 

Set to launch October 17th.

Set to launch October 17th.

Categories: abuse, ADHD, Adoption, child abuse, death, equal rights, gay lesbian, lesbian, life lessons, love, Politics, self-help | Tags: , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Butch On Tap – Why I Hate TSA

Please, follow this link to the story by my friend Butch Jaxon.  This is very typical of the treatment that butch women and transitioning people go through. Being publicly humiliated is NOT cool. I’ve been through it in many places and situations. read  on to see why Butch Jaxon “hates TSA” – excerpt below.  ~ Jesse MacGregor-Jones

 

 

WHY I HATE TSA

Why am I ranting today?

You may remember that a few days ago the gay flight attendant called me sir. Right, duh. Anyway, whatever. Indeed, today as I am writing this on a different plane, the flight attendant called me sir, and didn’t even acknowledge me when I corrected her. Dumb people suck. But, the reason for my rant today is TSA. I am going to tell you why I hate them. [Hate is a very strong word and I never use it casually. Indeed, it’s a bad word in my house and the kids can’t use it either. So, I use it here today to really convey the depth of my anger…]

On at least 3 other occasions, I have gone through the body scanner at security and had to wait a moment longer, or be rescanned. I know that this is because they thought I was a guy, but my naked body scan showed a body other than what they expected – boobs and no penis, to be specific. Waiting in the security line, when there is a body scan has become quite anxiety producing for me. Will they get it today? Will they ask themselves while looking at the scan, “Where is that guy’s penis?” Or, “Why does he have boobs?” Ugh. How embarrassed will I be?

 

…for the rest of this story, please follow the link to ButchOnTap.

http://butchontap.com/2013/02/13/why-i-hate-tsa/

Categories: abuse, equal rights, lesbian, life lessons, Politics | Tags: , , , , , , | 4 Comments

Why I Live Like I Do – Blown By the Wind

Great live version!

 

All My Dreams Pass Before My Eyes of Curiosity

Nothing lasts forever, but the earth and sky….no truer words were ever spoken. My philosophy on life, the actual process of living and the purpose for our existence, is far removed from that which most people feel. Firstly, I don’t believe that this is our only ride on the pony. I believe that we come back many times to this earthly realm and we learn more and more as we progress up a ladder, so to speak. In all honesty, I think it a little bold to believe that you could learn all there is to know from living only one lifetime.

I have nearly died a few times. I’ve known others in the same place. All of my life I have been very intuitive and after my parents passed it became very strong and I had to work with a woman to help teach me how to ‘turn it down’ when I needed to. I feel emotions far more deeply than many others do for this reason. I also tend to know when I am being lied to. What makes me different than most people is that I’ll forgive the lies and try to get straight to the root of the thing that is causing you to tell the lies. I am not like most people. Some might call me crazy…that’s okay. I can take it. I forgive them too. I am actually very quick to forgive, but I don’t necessarily let everyone back in. I weigh the circumstances and I wonder whether or not I can help them…or if there is another lesson for me at hand. This determines my decisions.

My belief is that before we are born, we actually plan this life out to a large degree…like an outline. You are still free to write the story the way you wish, but the general outline will guide you. I believe that we choose the battles that we are going to be facing, based on the lessons that we need to learn this time around. I was told by a psychic in 2007/08 that this was my last time to be reincarnated and that I had asked to make this lifetime to be a very big challenge. In her words, “You really wanted everything possible thrown at you so that you could really go out with a bang this time. You wanted to experience it ALL.”

To be perfectly honest….at that time, I thought she was little bit full of shit. She knows it because I sort of told her that. She’s still on my Facebook friends list and she’s honestly really good. As it turns out, I believe her now. It took me a while – it was a slow progression and almost like a game…to see what else could possibly happen and what would I survive. You see, I have complete faith now that I’m SUPPOSED to just keep going through more shit and that I will survive. I also know, beyond the shadow of a doubt, that I have a reward of some sort coming. I know that God is going to give me peace and rest, love and somewhere to put down roots. I can feel it moving towards me. Faith. This is my only explanation. I’ve survived many things that should have killed me. I know that I am SUPPOSED to be here, sitting in this booth right now, writing this. Someone out there is being moved by every word and their life is beginning to make more sense to them as they read on. YOU! You may be that person I am supposed to be helping right now. Have some faith and know that you are not alone. I’m aware of your pain and many others are too. You can and will survive, my friend.

My days are spent attempting to touch people with a dose of reality and trying to show others that humility is a good thing. Yes, I get confused and I get scared. You see, while my soul knows the outline I am following, I have no memory of it. For now, I’m just a human being that is also making mistakes and getting by through much trial and error. I’m simply trying to trust that I’m being shown opportunities to grow and given chances to rise above. I’m challenged and tested each and every day. We all are! Some just don’t understand it.

Same Old Song…Just a Drop of Water In An Endless Sea

I’ve risen above homelessness, hunger, my father’s suicide, near death experiences, child abuse from my mother, being cheated on by at least two people that I loved, lied to by people that I trusted with my life and being put in harm’s way, having no family in my life at all…I’m a complete loner, being diagnosed with diabetes in 2005, put on psychotropic drugs that actually caused me to lose my mind for a long time, watching someone die in my arms, being beaten half to death by three grown men just because I was a lesbian, having an older brother come to live with me and take me for money, hit me and break everything I owned for going on two years, having a younger brother go to work at the job I helped him get and tell everyone that as far as he was concerned he didn’t have a sister as long as I was gay, living in a cabin in the winter of 2011 with no running water, no heat, no electricity and surviving by letting the dogs sleep on top of me on those nights when ice formed on the inside of the walls. I’ve tried to help a lot of people who burned me badly. I’ve had people tell lies about me and others judge me. I have been diagnosed with ADHD/ADD and auditory processing disorder, anxiety, agoraphobia and a few other things. All of those issues come and go. I had a panic attack last night and my chest hurt. I knew that it would pass.

In the last month, I came to IL to help someone. She told me she loved me and she tried to hide a lot from me…but I already knew she was lying to me. Again, like I ALWAYS do…I forgave her. It just isn’t worth being angry anymore. I let go of all my anger last summer. God showed me that my life was my own and that He had honestly given me every possible chance to turn things around. This is when I realized that my purpose…my TRUE purpose in life was to help other people. Even if it is a kind word and nothing else…I feel that I can touch people in a way that can change their life. This is what I try to do each and every day now. I don’t hold onto anger and I don’t let things keep me down. Yes, I get down because I’m human, but I quickly recover and remember that I have a purpose and a meaning to my life. I move on.

These days, I’m being tried and challenged with each breath that I take. I’m single and it looks like it’s going to stay that way. You cannot help someone who refuses to be helped because their path has not yet led them to have any faith in themselves or in the world around them. I weep for her, not because she’s hurt me…but because I could not help her. I have still offered to be here and be her friend, but one thing I have become very good at – turning my feelings for someone off. If I choose not to let you in, then you are done. I only resort to this when I feel that the damage I am incurring is greater than I can heal. One of my very first lessons in life was how to save myself, even when it was very traumatic. Honestly, that trauma has followed me for many years and only recently I believe that I was forgiven for it in a way that was meant to help me move on from this current experience faster as well.

I don’t tend to regret much, as I know it is a learning experience. I do regret when I can’t help someone…but it is time for me to move on. It is time to let the wind blow me again. I place it in God’s hands and where I end-up, I trust I am supposed to be there.

~ all we are is dust in the wind….

 

Categories: abuse, ADHD, child abuse, death, equal rights, gay lesbian, lesbian, life lessons, love, self-help | Tags: , , , , , | 7 Comments

I Dare You To Move

Kindness is contagious!

Kindness is contagious!

 

 

I believe that everything happens for a reason. Life truly amazes me and I find the irony hard to swallow at times. I also find that the  way things are right there when I need them to be a little bit more uncanny than just coincidence sometimes. I truly feel that I am watched over and blessed. Could this be something that my mind makes up, just to make me feel better? Perhaps … anything is possible … but they DO say that ignorance is bliss. I’m a blissful person these days.

This morning I woke up thinking about the girl I am trying to get home to see. Never in my entire life have I felt more accepted and understood by someone. She accepts all my little quirks, my writing and she even tells me that she feels so connected and moved by my writing. That word that she said was stuck in my head … she felt moved. This was going around and around in my head this morning and I pondered things. I thought about the things that had moved me, in days gone by and in my present. I remembered a guy I had known named Lance.

Lance was very short. He’d been born with a congenital heart defect and while growing up, he’d had to have many surgeries as he grew, to accommodate for the growth in his heart. The doctor’s would go in and make repairs so that he could live. Lance told me one time, over a few beers, that he had died five times on the operating table. He told me that each time he had out of body experiences that he couldn’t explain. Lance told me unbelievable details of the light, looking down on his body, meeting with peers on the other side that were his mentors. He recalled in detail the conversations that they’d had. He remembered that there were five of them, he swears we all have five people on the other side who act on our behalf at all times. He explained to me that our lives were a road map that we had taken a part in planning before we were born.

Lance told me that we all chose the things were supposed to learn in this life, before we were born into it. He told me that we chose the hardships, knowing that when it happened to us, our soul would not remember our planning. It was meant to purify us and teach us. It was the chance to grow from experiences and become greater than we were. It is all in the name of education. He dramatically recalled his ‘conference’ with his mentors and how they told him where he’d made progress and where he needed more work. Then he described how he felt himself sucked back into the body and would wake in recovery. It happened to him each time that his heart had ceased to beat, while hooked to bypass for the repairs he would need to continue living.

I highly doubt that Lance knows that the conversations we had almost 20 years ago would shape me the way that they do now.  Especially considering the fact that I would often get so drunk with Lance that I’d need to be driven home. I was very close to being an alcoholic. I think I was trying to dull the pains that I felt over being gay, crushing on straight women and always thinking that there was no one out there for me. I truly believed that I was going to live a solitary life.

All these years later, I’ve come to learn that none of us are solitary. We are all touched by the world around us at all times. The repercussions of my conversation with Lance, from the year 1989, to the man who asked me to help him with his computer last night, to the gentleman who offered me advice on where to get tires this morning. We all touch each other. It wasn’t until this morning that I made the connection of this song and daring someone to “move” – realizing that you don’t just move yourself….you move EVERYTHING with every move you make.

Your movement moves the air around you, molecules pass around the planet because of the breeze you create. I don’t care who you are and how insignificant you think you may be. You touch thousands of people, even with just intentions. Molecules can carry charges, positive or negative. Thoughts are electrical impulses, traveling along molecules. People can catch a ‘vibe’ because it really is a thing! I’ve come to realize that every good thought I put out there is coming back to me, tenfold. I’m happy. I am happy in a way that I have never felt happiness before.

DJ said to me that she was happy for me that I’d found this happiness and resolved myself with my life and come to terms with my past. She gets it! How can she possibly be so wise? She’s amazing … but she really gets it all and she gets me. This just makes my happiness and my amazement with life feel as if it may overflow. Then it hits me … it is supposed to. How many of you feel better when you read this? Can you carry this mood to the next person in some way?? Imagine a world where your thoughts can attract similar things to you. This is the world in which you live!!

Surround yourself with happiness and happy people. When you see someone who is sad, reach out to them and do something that makes them happy. Spread joy and love and plant the seeds of love wherever you can. Tend to this garden each day and watch it grow in your life.  I dare you to make your life and the world a better place. You will reap what you sow. I may be one person, but I realize that this one person is reaching thousands of others and if you all reach thousands, then that turns into millions in no time. We can make the world a happier place. My friends,  today I dare you to move by moving others!

 

http://www.randomactsofkindness.org/

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/07/27/random-acts-of-kindness-believe-in-the-human-race_n_1680813.html

http://now.msn.com/random-acts-of-kindness-photo-gallery

http://www.givesmehope.com/category/8/Random+acts+of+kindness

 

Categories: equal rights, life lessons, love, Politics, self-help | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , | 8 Comments

Surviving Life – Christmas Blessings and Miracles

I survived

This is dedicated to a very special lady. This is her story and mine. It’s a tale with a twist. It started with an ending before a new beginning… 

It never ceases to fill me with wonder at the way that things work-out in life. I want to talk a bit today about things that I’m feeling. Don’t I always?

My fans write to me and thank me for letting them in. I found it curious that the last person I dated told me over and over that I didn’t let her in. Sometimes I found myself wondering what on earth more I could have told her or shared with her? Then I realize that some things are not meant to be and no amount of trying to figure it out, when it is over, is going to ever really help.

We often pray to God, or ask the Universe or “Cupid” to help us get the one that we have our sights on. We get brokenhearted when it doesn’t work and fool ourselves into thinking that it is the end of the world. The real truth is that those endings bring us new beginnings and we must be open to them or else we’ll miss them.

Sometimes if we are VERY lucky, we may get a second chance at something that we let pass us by. I believe that a second chance has come to me from my past because I wasn’t ready for her and I needed to learn some other things first. Now I believe that I can be there for her.

For a short spell, when I broke things off with the woman who always chose to remain nameless in my world, I felt guilty. I was ready to move on almost immediately. I’m kind of like that. It isn’t because I didn’t ever love the people in my past, it’s just that when I have finally reached the point to say good-bye to them, it’s because I have been slowly transitioning there for a long time. So while I feel bad for her, because I know that I did hurt her feelings and it blind-sided her when it shouldn’t have, I am moving on with my life. Why? That is what a survivor does!

As fate would have it, I was messaged a few weeks before Thanksgiving by “DJ.” I hadn’t heard from her in about two years. Let’s go back in time. I was living back in my hometown. A friend on my Facebook wall said I should talk to this girl, she was married to another woman but from the area and could probably show me around and introduce me to people. Next thing I knew, DJ sent a friend request and we talked. We talked and talked and talked. It came out that she was indeed married and not happy. Her girlfriend was over the top crazy, mean and abusive.

I consider myself a ‘gentleman’ – an old school butch. I don’t mess with anyone else’s woman, especially their wife. Still, this girl was in a lot of trouble and really needed a friend. I have never turned my back on anyone in need. I don’t see me ever doing so.

One night, while talking to me via instant messaging on her computer, DJ says to me that she’s being attacked (I knew by who) and suddenly she was offline. By this time, we were talking as if we had something to hide, even though we had not done a thing. It was sort of happening, even though we both fought it tooth and nail. We had never done anything out of line, but we’d both been developing feelings for each other. It was, at this point, harmless crushes.

As you can imagine, I was freaking out and didn’t know what on earth to do. I was miles and miles away – an hour drive. I did what I knew was risky, I called the apartment phone number. It rang busy … fast busy. Something was wrong. I didn’t know the exact address, so I couldn’t call cops. I waited and I worried. 

FINALLY! A day or two later, DJ showed up on Facebook, posting photos of her destroyed laptop. Her ‘wife’ had yanked it away from her, for talking to me, and destroyed it on the floor. Now … I want to STRESS that we were not flirting, we had not done ANYTHING. We were only friends and I was there to listen to her. She was terrified of this woman she lived with. We chatted by phone now, off and on, when she could. I knew where she worked and though it was a long drive, I drove by on occasion to say hello and check in on her. She was afraid to talk to me. I was not interfering with her work and her boss didn’t care….but her wife and her wife’s family were actually watching her. They would sit with binoculars and keep tabs on her all night while she was at work. I started to wonder what in the hell I had gotten into, but still … I cared and I wanted to help her. Suddenly, one day I found myself deleted from her friends list. I knew that DJ didn’t do this. I tried to call her and the phone just rang and rang and went to voice mail. I tried a few times. Finally, I called the apartment. Her wife answered the phone. “Be cool,” I told myself. After all, I was not sleeping with DJ, I had never even kissed her or touched her in any way. I was only her friend. Just because this crazed woman thought there was more to it, that was her problem. “Is DJ there?” I asked.

“No. Who is this?” came the response.

“Just a friend. Do you know when she’ll be home?”

“No. I think she’s at the neighbor’s place. Who is this? Can I take a message??”

“Thanks!” – I hung up.

I got in my car and I drove the 50 minutes to get to her apartment. I drove by. DJ’s truck was there and so was the wife’s car. I couldn’t knock on the door with the wife there. What would I do? I had no idea. I drove past the apartments to the end of the street, went around the block and turned the corner. When I did, I glanced to my left and swore I saw DJ on the balcony at the neighbor’s upstairs apartment, which was across the street from her place. I turned my car around and I honked the horn and leaned out the window. Her face lit up and she said “What are YOU doing here?”

“Checking on you. You aren’t answering your phone and I’m not on your friend list anymore.”

“Ugh. Yeah, ***** did that. My phone is in pieces too.”

Right about that time, the stalker wife comes out into the middle of the road and starts waving her arms in the air, shouting, “Really, DJ? REALLY?” Obviously in a huff that she was talking to me at my car window.

DJ to me, “You wanna park your car and come up and sit with me and Leo? We’re having a few beers while she cools off over there.”

I parked and got out. The wife was still screaming and carrying on across the street. We ignored her. It seemed best. “Did she really destroy your phone too?” I just couldn’t believe this.

“Oh yeah, it’s in little pieces. Like my laptop and the home phone.”

We drank a few drinks with Leo. He was  a nice guy. When DJ disappeared to use the restroom once, he told me she was a nice girl and deserved someone better than the psycho across the street that she lived with. He’s seen a lot of things happening over there.

A little while later, as it had turned dark and we were just talking and laughing, trying to make the most out of a bad situation, suddenly the door across the street flew open. DJ’s possessions started flying out onto the sidewalk. The ‘wifey’ was going nuts. It appeared to me, at that time, that this woman was sincerely nuts. Now DJ gets up and runs across the street and it turns into a full blown scene.

I didn’t get in the middle of it, though I would have if I felt like she needed me. I watched DJ clock her wife’s male cousin right in the nose for helping to throw her stuff out. Apparently he had shown up while we were enjoying our conversation with Leo. She punched him right square in the nose, full force. I was proud of that little Army brat right at that moment. It showed me that she was feisty for sure!

She had been in the reserves, so it wasn’t like she was a weakling. She’s about 5’7, but only about 120 pounds. Her wife was shorter but built like a linebacker – typical butch chic. The male cousin made no attempt to hit her back, but he called the cops. He tried to charge her with assault. Great. Now it was a real scene. I stayed out of it and watched from across the street. I really couldn’t afford any trouble.

When all was said and done, about an hour later, the wife, advised to do so by the cops, left to go spend the night at the cousin’s place. DJ didn’t get in any trouble because the officer said she had a right to tell him to get out of her home and protect herself and her belongings. He had no right there. When the police left, I was still across the street and DJ had locked herself in her apartment. I knew she was upset.

I walked across the street and  I gently tapped on the door until she came and opened it. I stepped one foot inside the door and she fell into my arms. She cried on my shoulder. I held her for what seemed like forever. She said to me, “Now you know my secret. My dirty little secret that I didn’t want you to know. Even my family doesn’t know. I live with an addict. She drinks and she does drugs. She spends all our money on drugs and this is my life.” She sobbed on my shoulder and I wanted to steal her away to another world, another place.

I did nothing more than hold her and help her carry her things back in that night. A few days later, I showed up with a friend and a van and I BEGGED her to leave with us. “Come on, you don’t have to come to my place. I will take you anywhere you want to go….to your dad’s place…anywhere but here.” I begged for over an hour. She wouldn’t go, but she had a hoodie pulled up over her hair. It had all been shaved off and it wasn’t exactly a nice haircut. “Did she do that to you?”

She nodded without looking up or looking me in the eyes. She was like a dog that was afraid to make eye contact….so beaten down. “She said now no one else would want me.”

No matter how I begged, she just wasn’t ready and wouldn’t leave. She was so terrified. I had tears in my eyes again. Her eyes looked so hopeless and so sad. I hugged her and I held her again for a few minutes, because I really did understand. She was terrified and brainwashed to believe that she couldn’t get away.

A few days later, I went to a dollar store and I bought a cheap cell phone. I drove by her job, after hiding the phone and the charger in a Styrofoam cup from a convenience store, and I handed the cup to her. I said, “It’s not a drink, it’s a phone. You hide it. Keep it on silent. Don’t let her know you have it. In an emergency, you can call for help now.” I drove away. A few minutes later I got a text, “I am not sure which is crazier…you bought me a cell phone…or that you gave it to me in a cup?” I smiled and drove home. That was a Thursday.

That weekend, Sunday night, I received a text message from her, “Can u call me right now please!”

I called her. She was hysterical. **** had gone out and gotten too drunk to drive home. DJ had become the designated driver to get her home. DJ was driving when the wife started punching her. God only knows what was said or what they were fighting about, but DJ told me that I needed to come get her right away. She had stopped the car and kicked her wife until she had gotten out of the car. DJ had sped away, leaving her on the side of the road drunk. She was now at their apartment and scared to death. “When she gets back here…I’m dead. She will have her cousin come get her and then they will come straight here.” She sounded completely terrified.

I drove to meet her at a convenience store. She was wearing a hooded sweatshirt, pulled way up past her face. I walked up to her and ripped it back. Her eye was swollen shut and black. Again, I had tears in my eyes. She got back to my place with me that night. I gave her a cold washcloth for her face and some ibuprofen. I tried to get her to sleep in my bed and I offered to sleep on the couch. She wouldn’t move and would let me move either. She had a grip on me. I could tell she was honestly terrified. She slept on top of me, on the sofa, all night. The next morning, she told me she had to go to work and she was going to take care of some things.

Within a few days, we had her moved into her parent’s home. I helped her pack things into her car and my car and got it all to her mom and dad’s house. Things were very hard for her every step of the way. Her wife sold her truck without her permission. The state called it ‘community property’ because they were legally married and deemed the sale legal.

She got trespass warrants and more. The ex walked right through them. She violated the writ within the first week by calling DJ. The harassment continued. DJ and I continued to talk. One night, she met me at a StarBucks and we had coffee. We talked for hours and I held her hand. She showed up in the sexiest dress I have ever seen a woman wear for coffee. It was well after dark when I finally walked her to her car. We kissed for the first time, there in that parking lot. I remember it like it was yesterday.  Beyond the shadow of a doubt, it was a kiss that is second only to the very first kiss of my life – only because you never really forget your first kiss. This kiss was electric. It was meant to be, as if we were both right where we were supposed to be in that one moment of time. Looking back on it, I remember every detail of that night as if I was living in a fairy tale.

Then it happened, without warning …. she started seeing that woman again. She felt sorry for her abuser. Slowly but surely, she opened the door and let her right back into her life. I have read about this behavior. It’s common but I couldn’t take it. I just couldn’t take it. I didn’t react very well at all. I was hurt, angry and I let it show, I admit it.

DJ, also being temperamental (remember she’s feisty?), didn’t take my temper very well and words were exchanged. The words that stung me  like no others were, “****** owns my heart and nothing is going to change that!” I was done right then and there. I had to be. I still cared and it all hurt me very much, but I had to move on because I was going to be hurt more if I stuck around. I could see it coming.

I made a difficult decision; I walked away and I left her behind while I traveled to Missouri and then on to Florida the following year, to try my luck with the woman down here. We never really fully connected and something was always lacking for me. You know what I mean? Some relationships are just okay…but that spark…that thing…is just missing.

A few weeks before Thanksgiving, DJ found me. We talked, just out of the clear blue. She told me about going to school now, how her life had moved on, how she was free and finding herself again. I made it clear I was seeing someone, out of respect for that person. I didn’t tell DJ that I was really very unhappy. Then, the Tuesday before Thanksgiving, ‘she who remains nameless’ said something so stupid to me that I just couldn’t take anymore of her naivete’. I told her I really didn’t have any desire to see her anymore. It felt good to be basically free again. I mentioned it here and there, because that’s me; I’m pretty public.

Three days later, DJ contacted me again. She made it pretty clear that the door was still open between her and I. I suppose it was all very unresolved the way it ended before, and it shouldn’t shock me that I’d still have feelings for her? We’ve emailed back and forth several times. I can tell that she’s changed a lot. She’s different and it shows. She’s more upbeat and positive.

She’s also made more of an attempt to tell me how she feels. She told me she’s scared. She doesn’t trust easily. She is still dealing with some harassment from the ex but hasn’t lived with her in a year. She told me how much she regretted not leaving that day with me when I brought a friend and a van. She told me how abandoned she felt when I wasn’t there anymore and how much more crap she had to endure after that. This made me feel truly awful.

I really want her to know that I admire her. I want her to know that I really ‘get it’ all and I understand what she went through and how she still suffers. She lived through some of the worst things being done to her that a human being can endure. She lost her freedom, she was a prisoner, she was brutalized and emotionally damaged. She’s fought ten times harder to have her life back than most people ever have to fight for anything. She’s a good woman and she’s winning her fight. I understand her needs and I know how fragile she is, but I also know how strong she can be too. I cherish her for all that she is. I want to celebrate her accomplishments and raise her up now …. never to bring her down.

Today, I’m thankful that what I wanted here in FL didn’t work out, because maybe that closed door allows room for this one to be opened again? Maybe unanswered prayers are much more of a blessing than any of us ever realizes? Who knows? I can’t predict what tomorrow will bring, but I’m very happy to have DJ back in my life and I just hope that she realizes what it means to me and how special she has always been to me. I am not certain why she’s back in my life, but I choose not to question it. This is me, surviving life. Isn’t this what we all do?

Categories: abuse, equal rights, lesbian, life lessons, love, self-help | Tags: , , , , , , , | 12 Comments

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