Coming Out on Top

Friday was National Coming Out Day. It wasn’t until the evening when I even realized it–I’ve fallen behind in homework and I’m trying desperately to catch up, so of course homework is where I was at all day.

When I found out what I’d missed, I felt a sudden tinge of regret: Normally I’d post on Facebook or post here or do something relevant. But I forgot what day it was. “I’m pretty out,” I remarked, “I don’t know who I’d come out to anyways.”

How could the day challenge me? I’m already there–aren’t I?

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Hammer Time!

A long, long, long long long time ago (approximately 2176 years to be precise), there was a man named Judah HaMaccabee. Judah the Hammer. How quaint, you know? He led the Maccabean revolt against the Syrian-Greeks and with his small army, a miracle occurred and this band of Jews became victorious over their oppressors. The Temple was salvaged, cleansed, purified, rededicated–in fact, that’s how Chanukah gets its name! “Chanukah” literally means “dedication.” Thus the holiday began. Long before presents. Long before vague attempts to Chrismastize the holiday. Long before commercialization could be considered.

Something special happened then. Something inconceivable in today’s world.

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I is for It Gets Better (Part Two)

Yesterday I began sharing my story, my own experiences that have shown me it truly does get better. I spoke about my experiences hearing the word “gay” before I knew what it meant, and I shared the slow evolution from confusion to realization that despite all the pain it gave me, helped me to know I’m gay. I ended on a precisely hopeless note, but today all that withheld hope comes pouring out–and I hope you’ll continue with me on this journey.

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I is for It Gets Better (Part One)

Back while I still pondering over what H is for, I felt I was for Invincible. I said to myself, being open, being confident, being who you are, makes you invincible, makes you impervious, makes you incredible. I felt of sharing: When I’m afraid, when I don’t think I can go on, I surround myself with positive things–with thoughts of my friends, thoughts of the great people in whose presence I stand, of the glory of God imbuing everything there is with his light and his love, and then I feel invincible and I can go on.

Last week, I began to wonder if I really is for invincible. Instead, I began to think I is for Individual. I felt of sharing: There is no greater bliss than of knowing who you are, all your faults, all your foibles, all your fortes. To understand what goes on inside is to make you impenetrable, insightful, indivisible. To feel, nay, to know what is hidden beneath your exterior, that part of us that we so often wrongly equate the entirely of “I,” is to open doors and possibilities and events that otherwise would remain lost forever. To be an Individual is perhaps among the greatest gift God has ever given us.

Today, although both of these statements stand true and always will–I am Invincible, I am Individual–I know they are not all I is worth. I is worth a wealth of ideas, a well of inspiration, a river of incentive. I spoke the other night with a wonderful man, a man of whose nature and build I did not think even God could have crafted, and it made me realize, in that strange way that unrelated events inspire worlds of difference, in the way that butterflies in Africa incite hurricanes in America, that I is well worth so much more than all of this.

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D is for Division

D is for a lot of things. In part that’s why I’ve taken so long to write this next installment in the ABCs of GLBT: There’s too many options. I might as well go through a few them along the way. It’ll all make my point in the end. I promise.

D is for Diligence. Since, in life, that’s what you need: You need to be diligent to get anything done. The fight for equal rights has been long and arduous so far, and it’s likely to stay long and arduous until it’s over. Without diligence, we–the GLBT community and the oft underappreciated armies of our straight allies–wouldn’t be where we are today. Without diligence, we won’t get where we want to be, either.

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C is for Courage

It’s come to my knowledge there’s only one human emotion from which all others are born and construed: Fear. It makes sense with sufficient thought, of which I’ll try to abridge adequately here: Sadness is but an amassing of worries and anger is the fight side of flight or fight–the fear response. And happiness? Simply the momentary alleviation of fear.

It’s all best illustrated through relationships, especially those of the romantic kind. When John cheats on Cindy and she’s furious with him–she’s only afraid she’s not good enough, that he’ll leave her and she’ll be alone. When Carl missed Joe while he’s at work, Carl’s only worrying what might happen if Joe doesn’t come back, if something terrible happens along the way. And when all of them are comfortable and happy in bed, their fears are for the moment set aside and they feel intimately content.

And if fear is the root of all human emotions, courage is its only cure: Merrian-Webster defines courage as the “mental or moral strength to venture, persevere, and withstand danger, fear, or difficulty,” citing it’s ultimate origins in the Latin “cor,” meaning heart. So when we’re afraid and drowning in our fear, our only anchor is truly to take heart and swim to the surface.

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