Thursday, January 11, 2007

A thorny blessing...





I am taking the liberty of robbing from Hawaii Dave's blog. I guess I can since his comment was addressed directly to me. He wrote:


Beck,

Of all struggling and emerging gays, those in your position have it the hardest, which makes the blessing hard to recognize. Your story is both a cautionary tale for young, unmarried gays who have been socialized to believe they should pursue heterosexual relationships, and a reflection of the blessing of being gay. Bear with me here.

By getting married instead of leading a gay life from the outset, you've wound up in wrenching, seemingly no-win situation. You have a wife and children whom you love and want to spend your life with, but you also long to be with a man. It doesn't appear you can have both, so you choose, with great angst, to live without homosexual intimacy. It's likely that, should you remain committed to forgoing gay sex, the best you can hope for is a life in which you successfully employ coping mechanisms that lessen the emotional impact of your being unable to act on that essential part of your being.

To the extent that even one young gay Mormon reads your blog and is prompted to reconsider a decision to get married, your being gay is a blessing.

To the extent that anyone else reading your blog is moved to try to change antigay religious doctrine, your being gay is a blessing.

To the extent you are able to grow spiritually, emotionally and/or intellectually from your experiences, your being gay is a blessing.

To the extent others respect you as a decent and good man, and you positively present to them your status as a gay man as well, you will enlighten them, and your being gay will further be a blessing. (I know, that's getting way ahead of the curve.)

I could go on, but I think you get my point.

Hang in there, Beck.


I appreciate Dave's viewpoint - maybe because it isn't exactly mine and he gets me to think in different ways that I typically wouldn't think - and I like that, but there is genuine love and support just the same.


I have come to the conclusion that blessings can come from being able to grow spiritually, emotionally and/or intellectually from my experiences, being gay. I know this frustrates some, but that's okay, too. I am a frustrated man. But, in my frustration, I am also blessed by the choices I've made, including those associated with marriage, family and commitments to beliefs. I hope as I blog here, these blessings come through the "angst". This blog isn't a personal journal of all experiences in my life - it is a window in my thoughts and feelings of a very particular aspect of my life that is not and cannot be expressed in any other way or forum!


THIS aspect of my life sometimes may come across as my entire existence. It isn't! At times my anxiety level may make it seem like it is, and at times my passions and desires overwhelm me for a period - but I've learned to deal, to cope, and even enjoy the ride!




Paul struggled with his angst and was able to turn it into a blessing, even a thorny blessing.



And lest I should be exalted above measure through the abundance of the revelations, there was given to me a thorn in the flesh, the messenger of Satan to buffet me, lest I should be exalted above measure. For this thing I besought the Lord thrice, that it might depart from me. And he said unto me, My grace is sufficient for thee: for my strength is made perfect in weakness. Most gladly therefore will I rather glory in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me. Therefore I take pleasure in infirmities, in reproaches, in necessities, in persecutions, in distresses for Christ’s sake: for when I am weak, then am I strong.



--2 Cor 12:7-10




I hope to be able to be as Paul where I can see strength and blessings with my "thorn in the flesh". I use his term, not in a negative light as some, where this gayness is a burden or a wart that should be removed, but as a blessing of strength and uniqueness that makes me be better for it - and hopefully be a blessing for those around me and those who read this blog who may be struggling similarly - and thus even a larger blessing. (Now if you didn't know it already in my attempts to 'walk the line' or 'have it both ways', I'm really delusional now!!!)


Thus, I feel I have grown and progressed over the last few years of coming to terms with THIS issue. And that is a good thing - even a blessing! I don't hate who I am. I don't despise the feelings that I have. I don't look upon these emotions and desires in disgust... For they remind me to take "pleasure in my infirmities".


For where thorns grow, there also blooms the beautiful rose!

6 comments:

Loyalist (with defects) said...

Amen

santorio said...

somehow, i would like to eliminate the images of 'burdens' and 'thorns' and even 'blessings' when it comes to my sexual orientation. i have curly hair: thorn? blessing? burden? no.
my family genetics suggest cancer, not heart disease or alzheimers will characterize my later years. thorn? blessing? burden? no. that's just who i am.

Beck said...

Santorio: It is who I am as well... but it's how I look upon it that I'm wrestling with and coming to terms with. I'm trying to show "progress" in getting to the non-thorn, non-burden, even non-blessing point... But, I'm not at the point you describe.

It's a journey. It's a personal quest, as I also come to terms with other aspects of "who I am".

To avoid the self-odiousness is a huge step!

Beck said...

P.S. Curly hair can be a thorn or blessing if all I want is straight hair. Being bald can be a self-inflicted curse to the point that I may choose the unenvious bad comb-over style. Even genetically "being" cancer-likely can be a thorn or a blessing depending how I look at the experience of developing cancer. They all may be who a person "is". I'm not questioning that - but it's how I'm able to see the bigger picture in all of who I am; and that includes my gayness.

Thrasius said...

Thank you for your blog. I appreciate it and need it so much. I hope to be married someday, but it is a journey that I know I must consider carefully if I decide to begin it. I look forward to your future posts. thanks.

Beck said...

Thrasius:

Thanks for joining the queerosphere of bloggers. I'm flattered if anything in my blog can be of help to you in your journey.

I'm trying to be kind to myself as I seek to establish some sense of inner peace with this thorny blessing.

I look forward to your journey as you come to terms with yourself.

Thanks for being out there and commenting!