Sunday, March 17, 2013

Maiden Voyage

I have many ideas that I hope to one day bash into literary form for this blog because I secretly hope that somebody out there will read them and find the help, hope, or motivation they were looking for.  Tonight, however, they are just not coming together.  I'll admit I've started this post several times but nothing seemed to hold my attention long enough except for one question, "why are people gay?"  Now this is a question for the ages, and undoubtedly guaranteed to spark some heated debate among today's pontificators.

In my understanding homosexual feelings enter into one's mind by one of the following:

1.  They are introduced to it via abuse or other means.
2.  Recognition of feelings and thoughts, that seem to have been present for a lifetime.
3.  Temptation, yes the wily acts of that wretched Lucifer.
4.  Basic hormones, your horny, it doesn't matter, whoever is closest wins.

Category 1: I'm not schooled on so I'll leave that alone, 2 is difficult to challenge and/or prove so i'll leave that for the pride marches, 3 is a topic I have some thoughts on, and lastly 4 I have often thought about.

So which is it for you?  Most people I have talked to say they have always had these feelings.  But as previous post reveal such as not been the case for me.  Others I have met, say some sort of abuse set them on this path.  But, whatever the reason we have the decision, what to about it, today.  Recently I have made several gay friends who have told me something a long the lines of, "if I never try it out, how am I supposed to decide what I like."  Of course they are referring to entering the gay dating scene and such.  I have mixed feelings about this.  First off, if you're not sure about your sexuality, experimentation may not be the most effective initial step.  There are definitely things you can't get back.  Secondly, "trying it out," isn't fair to you or those who participate with you.  And lastly, it will not make your decision easier to make especially for a LDS guy, in fact it will most likely complicate the matter.

I have a good friend who has recently been delving into the world of dating. . .guys.  As far as I know this is a new endeavor for him.  He has become increasingly frustrated as one may expect from an upstanding LDS guy becoming acquainted with the boys of Utah county.  Now, before we get all worked up, I'm sure there are some great guys out there, but experience has shown those guys are few and far between.  I feel for the guy because he has found a guy he likes a lot, but it seems like the other guy isn't quite into him on the same level.  So some advice, if my advice is worth anything.  Proceed with caution, make your intentions clear, and accept the consequences of your actions.  Remember, the race is long so enjoy every mile.

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Switching Shoes Switching Lives

Sometimes I wonder if this is more a running blog than anything else.  While my love for running does not need to be restated, you will have to excuse my repeated references to running or my beginning a thought with, "while running today," because frequently my most impressionable thoughts or insights come to me while i'm running.  Such as this morning.

This year marks a true benchmark in my running career.  I have changed shoes. (GASP! I know!)  I have run in same model of shoe for over five years now with fierce loyalty.  Why, you ask?  Simply, because I'm a creature of habit.  More importantly, the shoes rock!  I have never had a running related injury that could be even partially blamed on my shoe of choice, so if it ain't broke don't fix it.  I tried once, two years ago, I switched shoes a few weeks before a marathon and my knees still hold a grudge.  But this year things are different.  I knew coming out of winter my miles were down and it was time to move to a more neutral cushioned shoe.  So I took the plunge and bought some.  [I wasn't too worried because Brooks running shoes can be sent back within 30 days even if you wear them.  I had run about 250 miles in the previously mentioned cursed shoes and sent them back for a full refund.]  I am several weeks and many miles into my new shoes and loving them, I have no complaints.  Initially, I was really apprehensive about switching, I was noticing every unusual ache or tenderness in an effort to discredit my new shoes, but to no avail.  My feet are adjusting well and my new shoes have have influenced me to once again, run happy (Brooks slogan).

As I near graduation and face the reality of moving away from BYU I am faced with a decision.  Do I continue to be active in the church and fight the urge to date guys, or do I move to a new city and start a new chapter in my epic homo-saga and be open with myself.  I have gone full-steam-ahead with both ideas.  One day I'm set on going back to my fully invested mormon self, and the next I've convinced myself it's time to join the local gay club.  In essence I am scared to get new shoes.  Will I hurt myself by breaking out of my habitual life?  Am I missing something by not?  Will life be better, worse, or the same?  Will I wish I'd never changed due to unrepairable damage? I DON'T KNOW!  Unlike shoes, there is no going back.  I can't say I'm gay one day and two weeks later take it back.  Life does not give full refunds.  I'm stuck with my half-worn pair of shoes that I'll never be able to use again.  So what do I do my friends?  What has your experience taught you?

I bought multiple pairs of the same shoe the other day and the teller looked at me and asked, somewhat hesitantly, "are these the same?"  I just smiled and replied, "yep."  Clearly she wasn't a runner.  Unfortunately I don't have multiple lives to wear out, I get one shot at this.  Here's to hoping I make the right decision.

Thursday, March 7, 2013

The Green Light

And. . .we're back!  It appears in my absence my blog has become more popular, strange, apparently I'm fascinating when I'm not saying anything.  Oh well it's due time for a dip in the ratings so here we go!

[Quick Update:  Still at BYU, graduate in April, still gay, heading to grad school (not sure where yet), still running etc etc etc]

As spring approaches my running workouts have changed from winter-maintaince to pre-marathon-I'm-gonna-kick-A-this year, for those in the crowd wondering, the latter is far more intense and fun!  Now that it is not northern Siberia weather in Provo I can run without fear of slipping on ice and associated obstacles.  When the sun comes out around BYU the runners come out of the woodwork, literally like locusts, they're everywhere!  I don't complain much because there are few things I enjoy more than guys running, the ladies, meh usually not impressive, but fit guys getting their cardio in is a great site.  However, not the point.

The Point is, what are all these people running for?  Surely they are not runners, because I never saw them in the winter, and there is like four of us on the indoor track that actually run, so where did they come from?  What are they doing?  I'm sure it's the usual "get in shape" routine, work on the "beach body" or gotta train for the family 5K. But whatever the reason I'm proud of you! I may yell, "run faster" out the window as I pass you but it's all encouragement I assure you.  After all, why put on your fancy exercise clothes to walk?  But of all the unique things I observe from my fair-weather running crowd, one thing in particular is my favorite.  You've all seen it, the girl (sorry girls but it usually is you) waiting at an intersection jogging in place, and checking their pulse.  Really chick?  You're working that hard that 11 seconds is gonna throw off your groove?  Plus pulse checking while bouncing up and down is difficult and surely not accurate (and I would bet you don't even know your target heart rate anyway).  Then the light changes, they bolt across the intersection trying to fool everybody that this is their normal pace, only to make it half a block.   Just FYI a serious runner, in my experience stands there looking irritated that the traffic-light gods are taking their coffee break.  I've never witnessed the cross-country team jog in place at a light.  So if you are one of these people (chances are slim cause this a gay hangout blog where ladies tend to be sparse) just realize that everyone may be looking at you because you look ridiculous not because they are impressed with you fitness level.

Moral of the story is (yes I'm gonna try to tie this in) in my gay run of life when I hit an obstacle, such as stop light, I'm not going to sit there and pretend that everything is still moving along swimmingly while hap-hazardly trying to check my vitals, I'm gonna stop, be annoyed that I had to stop, then motor on when I get the green light.  You see, it is those people that want to be seen so they pretend to continue running, and believe they working harder than those who just wait, that usually flip a biscuit when you get a false start due to a retarded left turn arrow!  The truth is, because you never stopped to actually pay attention to what halted your forward momentum in the first place, you end up not understanding your circumstance and getting run over by the guy turning left.  There is much to be learned if you patiently observe your circumstance and move forward when it is time.

Well that was deep.  Or it is late and I'm tiered, so it seems deep.  Either way I will continue mock those that jog in place at an intersection.  Because, I love you, seriously.

Monday, October 15, 2012

The Usual Rant

I don't expect my challenges to be unique to me, nor do I assume that I'm the only one struggling along the straight and narrow path.  But sometimes you share what your dealing with to relieve the pressure within oneself and perhaps help another.  I choose to divulge my feelings on this blog (apparently not very often) because I'm not in a situation to share these issues with my friends or those around me.  For those of you joining us for the first time, I'm a twenty-somthing senior at BYU who is gay just trying to figure life out.  

I struggle keeping gay friends.  Apparently I'm not "very gay" and consequently I'm not in touch with my sensitive side.  Often my friends--gay and straight alike--are hurt by my disinterest in hanging out with them.  I enjoy hanging out with friends but I also enjoy my time alone doing my own thing.  I'm upfront about this part of my personality, but eventually everybody seems to expect more out of the relationship than I do.  Such expectation leads to disappointment, anger, and eventual friendship abandonment.  I try to be better and try to be a good friend but it is evidently not enough.

I'm working on it.

My guy friends don't seem to have a problem with it.  I can go days not talking to them and we are still best friends.  I would hope one day to have a friend like that who is also gay.  I have put a reasonable amount of effort into finding gay friends over the past year but I haven't had much luck.  I hear rumors and catch glimpses of other gay guys who may be from the same type of mold as me, but I have yet been able to meet one.

The spiritual dilemma.  As many of us mormon guys know, it is difficult to sit through church and not feel as if you are being scolded for being gay.  Whether you have broken commandments or not, the ever present judgment of God is staring you in the face.  This is a difficult circumstance.  One I would wish I had no part of.  But I keep going, waiting for that day when my path is clear and bright.

I spoke with a friend today who just got out of a serious relationship.  Seriously, she was planning a wedding.  She has a great life and is hopeful for the future.  I wish I knew how that felt.  Don't get me wrong, I have a great life too and am very hopeful for my future.  But a future shared with someone special seems ever so distant.  Occasionally those I care most about don't have time for me, which is understandable, we all have lives.  It is at times like these where I feel the most isolated.  Isolated from friends, God, family, and my accomplishments.  It's a strange feeling--total isolation.  Generally I snap back to reality quickly and return to normal cognitive capacity realizing it is no use stressing about something you can't change.

I'm often charged by leaders and teachers with phrases like, "rise up oh men of God." I often imagine what this metaphorical army would look like.  I feel like I would be standing outside of the ranks, wearing the same uniform,  but watching as the soldiers marched off to war leaving me behind unnoticed struggling to keep up.  

Life is good.  It's never what we planned it to be but it is still our life.  I'll enjoy my life whether my friends join me or not.  I'll enjoy the isolation so I enjoy the company.  I'll do my best to do my duty even if I'm alone.  Life is good, challenges come, but i'm working on it.

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

I Run This Town

I'm pretty sure it was on a Nike T-shirt somewhere; I saw this phrase, "I run this town."  Of course it was a running shirt implying the obvious, but for some reason the phrase has stuck with me.  In the case of every town or city I have lived in, I really have 'run' it.  Provo, for example has seen me running on almost every road, street, or pathway during my stent here at BYU.  I know where everything is, and how far about things are.  It is interesting just how much you notice and are able to recall when you pass something repeatedly and slowly (as oppose to a car).  Sometimes I wonder if my approach to being gay is more of an auto-oriented perspective than that of a runner.  I pass things quickly, mentally or physically, and try not to think about it much.  But in so doing I have discovered that I don't understand my personal stance on MY sexuality.  It seems weird, but it's true.  It is a thought I have trained my self to ignore on a detailed scale, and relate to on broad level.  I really don't know how I feel on many things just because I've never allowed myself to think about them.  This has frustrated some of my gay friends, because they seem to have it all figured out, while I continue in a separated happy fantasy.  

So how do I figure these things out?  I have no blasted idea! I suppose that is why I started this blog in the first place (maybe I should read back and make sure), but as you can see I kinda failed at that too.  It feels like I am wearing the physiological running shirt that says, "I ran this town, then moved on."  It's true.  I don't think about being gay near as often as I did before, it doesn't occupy my thoughts, or influence me in ways it previously had.  It appears that I have set my sights on being a successful professional single guy with fancy toys and expensive cars.  This may sound great to some, but it is not what I want.  I really don't want to be single my whole life, I would love to have someone to be with, someone to live with, and someone to share my life with, guy or girl I don't care I just want someone.  Now, obviously I do care, I'd love that individual to be a guy, because i'm attracted to such.  But, the idea of just having a companion is what I'm afraid i'm loosing.  I don't want to live the life as car on an interstate, passing through a city seeing nothing but the sound barricade.  I want to run that city, exploring, seeing, smelling, and enjoying the journey.  How do I get that dream back?

I often tell myself it will change when I leave here, but I'm not so sure.  I'm afraid i'm building mental barriers that are going to be difficult to deconstruct, preventing me from embracing a companion.  I wonder if I am a unique case in this thinking.  I'd imagine not, but it is really starting to concern me.  But until the day comes when this all makes sense in my brain, I'll run this town again.

Sunday, May 6, 2012

It Has Been a While

Well it sure has been a while in fact, I almost forgot I had this blog.  Much has happened in the past (however, long it has been) but not really much on the gay front.  That really isn't that surprising due to the fact, that there is never anything happening on my gay front.  But I just had the urge to put some thoughts down in an attempt to figure out how I feel.

Life is good.  I'm in top physical shape (I hope to run my fastest marathon yet in just a few weeks).  My grades are fantastic, and my academic pursuits are looking great.  I have a good job and great friends.  I have heard the stories of many gay individuals here and around the world.  I hope everyone can see the good in life and I hope everyone knows I'm pulling for them, we're all in this together.

Sunday, December 11, 2011

I have enormous amounts of homework and studying I should be doing in preparation for finals, but sometimes you just need to rest and take your mind off of things.  It has been quite some time since my last post and a lot of things have happened.  Nothing terribly exciting but one you all might find interesting.

Thing #1
One of my best friends just up and asked me if I was gay, I told her yes and then quickly told one of my other best friends who happens to be her best friend.  I did this because I knew they would talk and I thought she should hear it from me.  I'll be honest, that day sucked, and the day after that.  I had never felt like such a failure.  Failure at life, failure at church, failure at school etc.  Now two of my friends who thought of me as an upstanding church goer now have their perception forever tainted.  I know they'll still love me and all that jazz, but now anything I do will have a annotation that says "gay." That was several weeks ago.  I'm over the initial shock of the ordeal, but I can't talk to either of them the same yet.  I hope one day that changes.

Thing #2
I've also met a few more gay guys.  One of my best friends introduced me to two of his gay friends a few weeks back.  One of which is in a similar situation as I am as far as family, friends, and church is concerned.  According to my friend both of the guys later asked him if I was really gay.  Apparently I'm not very convincing.

Thing #3
Ski season is finally upon us!  I went skiing for the first time this season! That's all I have to say on that topic.

Thing #4
My birthday happened.  A lot could be said about this day, but I don't want to divulge too much information, suffice it to say it was fun.

I got a new apartment.  I will soon have my own room, finally.  I am also getting a new ward which I am looking forward too.  A fresh start where nobody knows me.

I'm sure there is much more exciting things that happened the past few weeks, but I can't think of them.  I'm still the same guy trying to survive college and navigate the rest of my life.