Thursday, December 31, 2009

Bewitched, Bothered and Bewildered...





Had this song on repeat all the way home tonight, down Ward Parkway, past the mansions and beautiful lights, in the fog and clear cold evening.

Is it strange that I watch myself finding a someone just blocks from where my parents met and my Mom grew up and found love with another guy in a little foreign sports car...around the fountains they drove past, up and down streets they walked and this so unexpected as well? How to capture and hold onto this feeling? Fate at Meyer Boulevard and Ward Parkway. What choice do I have at the moment, but to float along?

Something is happening, and I am unable to hold it tightly into words at the moment. Many thanks for all the friends and partners that have stepped along side me to offer encouragement, wisdom and prayers for me as I work and process through this unexpected development. I am confident that peace will reign in my heart.

When I get my thoughts together, I will have something objective to say, but at the moment...the song says it all...

Monday, December 28, 2009

Week...here I come!


Another week has begun and while open now is soon filling up....grrrrr Great coffee this morning with a friend and some questions asked that still are to be answered. Contact is good, makes thing seem more solid and transparent. How strange to see Jeff Adamsthere this morning as well. Like shades of the past... Serendipity I suppose?

Days are for working, nights are for? Big conference all week that I was invited to this morning by Stephen. Not sure how much of that I will participate in, given my current frame of mind and life. Still need to catch up with Jeff, since I had to miss his holiday party (Sorry man...) but family calls strong.

Church on Sunday went well, thought and wrote alot as Deth spoke and a new short term list of goals is coming together. Lunch with Michael at Sharps and then wandering around the city we went. Brrrrr...it was cold. Should have told him now nice he looked. Coffee...then tea...then home to sit and relax. Simply talking and sharing time was nice. Simple. So glad to have the matter weighing heavy on my conscience cleared off. Honesty and openness is always the best policy. Remember that Daemon! After leaving (too early) home to family for yet another Christmas thing...those are finally over...I think?! So happy to see siblings, friends and family just mingling and getting along well. No awkward questions yet...thank God!

So many free nights this week...how to fill them wisely? I am going to take one day at a time and let my decisions be productive and not wasteful. Intentional living is the motto of the week. Think and make sound decisions always with an eye on the immediate and long term future.

Well, it's time to pull the jeans out of the dryer, shed comfort and venture back out into my life again. The repose and rest was nice while it lasted! This is going to be a Great Day!

Saturday, December 26, 2009

Note to self...


Daemon,

I saw you today at work and I really enjoyed watching how you move around and work with people. Ever think that so many friends would swing by in the course of one day? Old friends and new friends, good friends and not so good friends. Guess someone was sending you a pretty strong hint about doing the right thing tonight....hmmm?

That was pretty cool that Petra bought you coffee this morning, but four shots of espresso and a large Red Eye...was that really necessary? Think the vitamins are helping the cold? You do seem to be feeling a little better. Don't forget to work out tonight, your arms are looking a little soft, and c'mon bench press isn't going to kill you either. Let's get that chest back up and out again!

Good idea about parking in the heated garage today. Screw the parking patrol! (please don't give me a ticket is what I really mean...) Kind of nice to come back to a clean and warm car? I know you were being obedient the other night parking outside and all, but c'mon, don't be a dumb ass next time...okay?

So ya got all cleaned up for nothing tonight. I could tell you were plotting something by the little smiles and far away looks today. How many times do I have to tell you? Nothing slips past me! Sure, you may kind of fog me out at times...but I know you. So please, give me a break with the innocent puppy dog eyes...yeah those ones! You always take that long in the shower? Right! Sure, I believe you...you just seem a little well groomed for a night at home is all...Before you get all innocent and wounded looking...thank you for doing the right thing, or at least putting life on pause, okay? That took some strength. Don't ever forget that as sarcastic as I may get, I really do love you and want the best for you. Yeah, it sucks...but suck it up man! Get over yourself!

So you going to church in the morning? I am sure there are alot of people who miss you, and it has been awhile. I am not asking for alot here, or even for you to change anything about you, just check in and see what is going on. 11'o'clock be there if you want. Don't forget Jeff's party tomorrow, call him in the morning to find out when you should make an appearance and your family needs some time for another Christmas with your brother and his family. That is important to them...so don't screw this one up, by getting distracted or busy or something and by something I mean shooting pool and hanging out at the club.

Somebody may call tomorrow...and I know you wanted to hang out with him tonight. It is okay to be disappointed, but it was a long day, and you are both tired. Don't rush stuff. Just relax and stop playing mind games with yourself. You think I can't hear that? Silly boy... Make a good friend...that is what you need right now.

So are we gonna watch some movies or what? I am hungry too, so you better get to cooking, just wanted to let you know I was thinking of you and want to see you happy and at peace. Last night sucked you know, with the tossing and turning and stuff. How 'bout some real rest tonight, like at a normal time, and without all the dreams?

Well, I don't have alot to say, just checking in. Talk to you tomorrow and Hey! be good tonight, okay? You know what I am talking about. Stay home...stay! :) Later man,

Daemon

Friday, December 25, 2009

Late Christmas night...





I don't have special things to offer.

Who I am is not so much.

But what I am will be yours if you will walk with me.

Would you be my two times friend?

To wake up in a room so bright.

Holding and being held.

Light in eyes sharing.

Simple, gentle touch.

Thursday, December 24, 2009

My funny Christmas Eve...


...got off work, walked through blinding snow, found car frozen solid with ice.


Only people left on the Plaza were riding their horses back to the trailers. (Carriage Rides)

Car won't open despite repeated efforts.


Did I mention the blinding snow?












It was a good thing...no one could see me piss all over my car to thaw my doors and get them open!


Also got the distinct Christmas Eve pleasure of doing the same (car, pissing, thaw, open) for two other frozen out compatriots of the retail scene...glad I drank all that water before I left work!

And thanks to the guys for being such good sports about it. (You said you weren't looking...)

Ya got to do, what ya got to do!

So I guess what I mean is... Merry Christmas to me and to you All!

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Change and Evaluation



What to do when I don't feel like I measure up to someone else? And not just meet them in some place as equals...but exceed? (and no, I'm not talking about anatomy here) In my life, I have always been driven to succeed, overcome and excel above and beyond the competition.

But is this all a competition? What is it about when two people encounter each other. I know as a man, I start evaluating, comparing, measuring, counting with my ears and eyes. It is not about status or winning, but more about self worth. Do I really have to justify myself, to myself, in someones eyes in order to accept the friendship they offer freely? What is this struggle to be more, have more, seem more capable and successful?

I think it is a defense mechanism. Something that I do to make up for what I perceive and areas I lack, or places I should be from, materialism I should participate in more, an effort to appear more successful. But I already really like myself.

Or do I? I seem to be so content, until a different set of eyes looks at me, and then suddenly I am back pedaling in order to be more me, larger than life, better, faster, more good, more secure. And yet...I am drawn to weakness, softness. The differentness that in many ways I feel that I lack or need to cultivate in myself.

I spent some time this weekend with a new person in my life, that has somehow altered my thinking. Not just the person, but the time spent. Connection and conversation. Being my authentic self, without reservation or editing. Just me.

And it was ok, accepted and affirmed.

I fought and struggled at first against just relaxing into the space of another person's gentle scrutiny of my life and then just opened my hand, my heart and head...and was me. I have yet to experience that simple decision and sharing of myself more than two other times in my life.

And it felt good. Two people truly meeting in a safe place and sharing life and story.

I wasn't the winner. I did not measure up. In fact my efforts in life paled in comparison to the amazing strength and courage displayed by another persons story. I didn't have more than them, or overcome more than they, in fact, I seemed pretty immature to myself. And it was just fine.

A good piece of advice I gathered was,"Get over yourself." And also, "Get out of your own way."

I am not sure what that means yet, but I am considering it over these holidays. I am still squirming about not holding more power in this new friendship and know that I will need to put that to rest on some way, with myself and with them. Simple honesty will be more than enough to cover it. But I am just a little happy and excited...tempered with caution, as I approach the now.

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Limbo and drift



It is strange to me how a series of simple choices leads to different paths, that once walked down, places one in a different perspective or view of something that has always been the same, but is now changed.

You can't undo the past, and the present is a direct result of simple 'yes' or 'no'.

Lately I have been saying 'yes' and nothing is quite the same.

It is too hard to explain right now, and I don't quite have my mind wrapped around it yet. It is like looking at one of those out of focus pictures, waiting for my eyes to fade enough, so that the hidden image pops out at me. Except this time, I don't know what I am even looking at, or waiting for.

I'm excited and happy in so many different ways, but also cautiously optimistic about the unknown. Yes, I know this is all really vague, but I don't know what the hell I'm trying to say. If I knew my mind at the moment, I could say it.

How?




Dark Night of the Soul

Cut it off. My heart is bleeding,
And my spirit’s wrung in pain,
Yet I hear my Jesus pleading,
Cut it off or all is vain.

So I’ve stopped my ears in terror
Lest self-pity make me quail,
Lest at last I take the error
And God’s purpose thwart and fail.

I am bowed to death in sadness,
For the pain is all too great,
But the dear Lord must find pleasure
In the way He maketh straight.

O.C.

Sunday, December 20, 2009

Here we go...


Wow...finally asleep at 4 am and now my body wakes me up at 6:30? Got to love that. Yesterday was long and interesting to say the least. Cleaned up, shaved and ready to head to church, bundled up in new jeans, well worn boots and an eight pound wool sweater. My mind is fogging.

Worked way too long and hard yesterday, but Stephen and David stopped in and brought me some coffee and prayed with me as I scampered about trying to put things in order. After work, went over to Stephen's for a late night dinner and talk. Stretched out on the polished concrete loft floor and tried to put my back and spine in some semblance of working order. I really like the new blanket he bought yesterday for his bed. He is shopping for some new furniture and will be off snow boarding today. I hope to God he doesn't break his ankle again in the half pipe!

Not sure what I think about the conversation last night, but am trying to process it all. We are both at strange, transitional places in our lives and are working on recovery to say the least. So much to build on, but so grateful to not be alone on the path. Sometimes I have no idea what he is talking about. I am trying to find a way to connect in an authentic way, that builds our friendship in the right manner and doesn't create space for anything less than God. I am thankful for him this morning. His words, presence and sharing. Oh, to be more emotionally tender and communicative. I have much I can learn from him. Soften my heart, make me tender to what I need to hear and say.

I don't think my mind and body are going to make it through this day, but I have no more time for sleep. Work, lunch, friends and then work again. So much for free time...grrr! This coffee tastes good and my eye lids are heavy, but my body feels surprisingly good for so little true rest.

Spiritually I am mute. I am not sure what is going on, but the time and space I have here will not let me digress into it. I need something today. I need some one today. Peace, please?

Saturday, December 19, 2009

Morning thinking










Woke up again today before the dawn...almost feels like the Navy again. Rolling out for the balls to four watch and standing duty...man, I don't miss those days! Good old Rotten Groton, CT. Brrrrrr! It is cold and clear outside and I eagerly await the sun and the start of another day. It is going to be so busy...but I can dig it!

This morning my mind crept back softly over the past a bit and I wondered and pondered some parts of my childhood and relationships I have had. Thoughts of Christopher and all those years. Fun in the sun at the lake. Sleeping in and driving aimlessly through the city. And Matthew, late night talks laying on the roof, staring at the stars and wondering who we would be in the far distant future.

Well the future is now. We have all moved on in our different ways, but I have to wonder, why are they married with kids now, and I'm still gay? What part of me didn't change and grow with time as it did them? Looking back, most of the guys I have been with in life, whether for years at a time, or something more May to Decemberish, have each moved past me in their development of life, if you want to call it that. Like the time for being boys, for them, is over and they became men, in more of a true or accepted sense. That is, if you can call being heterosexual and fathering children "manly". I guess it is a large part of what drives many humans on this earth. That need for pro-creation, fatherhood and what not. I don't desire that...at all. Nothing could be more scary than the thought of accepting responsibility for another humans life, knowing that by my actions, I have caused them to be.

I guess, in spite of my age and the trappings of adulthood that seem to follow me, I am still a kid in many ways. Am I the definition of arrested development? I have the financial freedom to do what I want, when I want, and my life is unencumbered by many of the responsibilities and obligations of my peer group. I remember my little sister telling me that I am selfish, to which I replied, I can't help but not be. I only have me to care for and take care of. Singular me. I still drive fast little sports cars, travel alot and tend to pick and chose my way through the activities and friends I want to be at and with. In fact, my lifestyle has changed little since I was in high school. I like nice clothes, shoes, gadgets, tools, books, music, guns, boating and good food. Hanging out, shooting pool and having a brew with friends is an easy way to spend time. Long mornings at coffee shops, sketching, reading and sharing conversation with other souls. Carefree in so many ways...is this healthy? Is this normal? Am I refusing to grow up? Did I get stuck in life somehow? Is this all it is? I fell in love with a boy, had sex with him and then just never moved on to anything else? Somehow they did. In fact, most of them did. I never thought of it like that. I guess I tend to keep it simple. I know what I like and don't ever really question it or examine it.

What further maturity is in store for me? Now that I have thought about this, does that mean I have to change? I like me...just the way I am. Is this just fear of something different? I can't help but think I am missing something...

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Early in the Morning...


"And Abraham got up early in the morning to the place where he stood before the LORD..."
Genesis 19:27

"And Abraham rose up early in the morning..."
Genesis 21:14

"And Jacob rose up early in the morning..."
Genesis 28:18

"And early in the morning Laban rose up..."
Genesis 31:55

"And the LORD said unto Moses, "Rise up early in the morning ..."
Exodus 8:20

"and Moses rose up early in the morning and went up unto Mount Sinai, as the LORD had commanded him..."
Exodus 34:4

"And Joshua rose early in the morning..."
Joshua 3:1

"And when Samuel rose early to meet Saul in the morning..."
1 Samuel 15:12

"And David rose up early in the morning..."
1 Samuel 17:20

"...Job sent and sanctified them, and rose up early in the morning..."
Job 1:5

"And very early in the morning on the first day of the week, they came unto the sepulcher at the rising of the sun..."
Mark 16:2

"And all the people came early in the morning to Him in the temple to hear Him...."
Luke 21:38

"And early in the morning He came again into the temple, and all the people came unto Him; and He sat down and taught them..."
John 8:2

"O God, thou art my God; early will I seek thee: my soul thirsteth for thee, my flesh longeth for thee in a dry and thirsty land, where no water is."
Psalm 63:1

"With my soul have I desired thee in the night; yea, with my spirit within me will I seek thee early: for when thy judgments are in the earth, the inhabitants of the world will learn righteousness."
Isaiah 26:9



Notice a pattern...?

Woke up before the sun today and bounced into another day with a spring in my step and a smile on my face. I popped my back, stretched out, rubbed the sleep out of my eyes and paused.

I wrote of watching out a window with a friend last Sunday morning and having a moment of contentment and peace, that came and went as he dozed.

This morning I watched the sunrise from that same place, this time without another person, and awoke to the fact that it is His heartbeat I should be listening for, His arms I should be leaning into, and His sunrise that greets each day.

God wants to move, speak and meet with me...early in the morning.

How many times, as my brain reboots and body comes awake, do I hurry through my activities in a hurried rush to start the day and re-engage with all the people and things I hold dear. What I move quickly towards is that which has my interest and focus. How often do I miss these meetings with Him? Those appointments He has set for me to simply wait and listen to His voice. How many times has He sat on the other side of a sunrise waiting for me, thinking...I do this for you, this glorious spectacle, everyday. Will he be here today? Will Daemon show up this morning?

Like Samuel said,"Speak Lord, for thy servant hears..."

So today, as I watch the sunrise over distant trees and land, the same sun that has greeted the morning for thousands of years over far and near places, I wait...

And listen.

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

His eyes are on me...

Fighting



Can you see the struggle?

Is the battle that self evident?
One day, on top of the world with light and sound...
the next just struggling through miry clay and ashes.
Everyone else seems to have it all together, and I can't seem to even get more than 24 well ordered, obedient hours in, before something else blindsides me.

How can I not help but feel a failure at my feeble attempts to live this Christian life?

Last night was low...nothing major happened...I didn't screw up in some horrible way, I just felt like shit and was questioning it all. All of this energy and effort put into trying to change over the last few years. It feels like my head is full of huge boulders that are cracking and slamming into each other in a mad tumble and scram and the sounds they make as they pound, let me know that they are not breaking down into manageable pieces.

Landslide in my head. Feeling alone on a cliff face. Am I climbing up or down? I can't get my head back far enough to see if I have made any progress, or am just clinging to the sheer ledges and waiting out a storm?

Sorry I don't have anything redeeming to say today. I am trying to look back into my past, but that place and room is so dark, I always end up running away. I thought I had a great life, until I started peering back and removing the walls and filters that I always relate and process events through. How do I manage to have such a positive outlook on all things? Am I faulty somehow and not processing stuff like normal people do?

It is like I feel dead inside to so many things that have happened to me, and choices I made myself. OK, not really dead so much as flat. I can see the event. I can remember things...and nothing. I know I should feel something, in fact if it was some other persons life, I would feel emotion...but to me, it's all shades of gray and silent white noise.

I'm digging all the new music I got yesterday. New sounds. I always relied on other friends to introduce me to new stuff, but lately...nothing. So I took a chance and got some new tunes that to be honest, knew nothing about. Cool indeed!

Where are you God?

Have you forsaken me?

How long will you wait?

I need you now, in this dark place.

You see that I am scared, only you can look right through and see me and how I truly am. I don't get it. I don't understand. Why the pain and tears?

Why are you so good to me, considering who I am? Please help.

But I am also mad at you right now. What is going on? Why would you make me this way? How dare you hand me something this hard to deal with? Is this fair somehow? Do you expect me to believe that it is for my good? How can this infernal, eternal, internal fight and all the shit I have dealt with from other people be good for me? I would rather have any other sin to fight. At least they are more socially acceptable and don't spook and scare people so much in this country.Everyone else seems to be doing just fine, and I'm not.

You are destroying everything I held dear. Taking away all the people and things that I love. Asking me to change me...to change myself. How can I change something I don't even understand in the first place? Oh...and get it all done while you are alone too! This is crap, man! I love my sexuality. I have always embraced being different. And now you're trying to convince me that all of it is wrong? You are telling me, that I am evil...my very core. Everything that I love and have stood for, the beauty and love I have shared in life is worthless, and not just worthless but at its very root, wrong? Me = unright?

How to keep the sullen bitterness away from my heart? Everything is eating me alive and I cannot help but wonder if it is worth it. There is a burning in my bones and an ache in my heart. I can't live on emotions and "feel good". I am not seeking for a better feeling, or happiness...but for truth.

Give me truth, or I die.

Maybe not today or tomorrow, but soon, and that without remedy.

Despair


You do not have to be good.


You do not have to walk on your knees
for a hundred miles through the desert, repenting.


You only have to let the soft animal of your body
love what it loves.

Tell me about despair, yours, and I will tell you mine.
Meanwhile the world goes on.

Meanwhile the sun and the clear pebbles of the rain
are moving across the landscapes,
over the prairies and the deep trees,
the mountains and the rivers.

Meanwhile the wild geese, high in the clean blue air,
are heading home again.

Whoever you are, no matter how lonely,
the world offers itself to your imagination,
calls to you like the wild geese, harsh and exciting--
over and over announcing your place...

in the family of things.

Night




In the spaces, far between, I am dying.

I am here...but not.

After a night of me and them.

People and friends so close..but not near.

I cry inside.

And keep helping.

Something breaks in my back, my core.

And I move along.

How to say help?

I can not.

Monday, December 14, 2009

A winters morning



It was one of those golden moments, unplanned and unanticipated.

Sunday morning, lying on the window seat in my bedroom, with a friend, talking. I found myself relaxed and satisfied with my life.

Gone was the typical nagging worry about things that needed to be done, or all the places I needed to be.

It was quiet except for the music softly wafting from the CD playing gently on the stereo.

As he dozed off, I could feel the solid rhythm of his heartbeat against my warm ear. As I glanced out the window, my field of vision was filled with the vivid, gleaming day, as the sun reached its peak of spectacular beauty. Icy reflections etched the stark trees into vivid relief against another days morning sky. A slight soft winters whispered snow fell like quiet cotton on flannel earth. A few solitary oak leaves performed their final, fluttering death dances to the ground as they gave way silently to winters quiet embrace. The evergreens shivered under white and seemed to huddle together like tall children waiting for the morning bus.








In that moment, I was seized with an overwhelming sense of spiritual fulfillment.

And then it was gone, lost as soon as I became conscious of my transfixed reverie.

It was like when you wake up from a pleasant dream and try to make yourself roll back into sleep. The mere act of trying makes it impossible for you to go back to where you were.

He was still sleeping, the music played and the snow continued to fall, but I couldn't rediscover the nirvana I had just experienced.

Looking back on the moment reminded me just how rare times like those really are and how much of our daily life is wasted with worry and struggle and commitment.

Being...

It takes the occasional golden moment to put these seemingly important day-to-day concerns in the proper perspective.

There were a dozen other things I shoulda-coulda been doing that Sunday morning.

The warm laundry could have been folded, the tussled bed could have been made, but then I would have lost the opportunity to feel, if only briefly, a blissful appreciation of the true blessings of life.

True friendship, life, peace...living without any shadows to mar innocence.

It may be overstatement to say that that singular moment has profoundly changed me. I don't know. Maybe next week I'll be back to my energetic, tense at times self.

But I do know that since then I seem to have developed a greater interest in slowing down. I have felt less anxious about tasks left undone and more concerned with watching clouds and sharing smiles my true friends.

And I can't help but regret how much time I've wasted not wasting time starting out windows and sharing a tender moments with some of the greatest gifts I've ever been fortunate enough to receive.

Life moves us all and someday the times we share with those we love will change or be gone, but the memory of that moment we shared on a lazy Sunday morning in December will be with me forever.



Jake...again

...the amazing ways humans express themselves never ceases to inspire wonder in me...


Sunday, December 13, 2009

No alarm clock...






Last night I went to bed (actually 2 am this morning) and did not set my alarm clock. As I laid down, I thought about all there was to do today, church in the morning, lunch with a friend, then work and after a Christmas party with friends, and wondered if I should set it. I hate nothing more than some machine telling me I should be awake when I am asleep and in sleepy town dream land. (Well that's a lie, there are many other things I hate but that is one of them.) So...I did not set it, thinking that my body would wake me up when I should start my day.

And it did.


(I bet you thought this was going to be one of those "Oh, Crap...I'm late posts! Nope!)

Woke up with a smile on my face and well rested to start another day. I slept with my arms crossed tight on my chest and discovered these interesting hand prints on my chest in the shower. Weird, huh? At least they are starting to fade as I drink my coffee and do my push ups. But for some reason the toes on my left foot are really sore, like they got stepped on, but I did not go dancing last night, so it must be some odd ache from bouncing around on my feet. (I do that alot. Too much coffee or energy I suppose)

Today is going to be great! Just finished packaging my dessert for the part (White Chocolate Chips, Cranberry and Macadamia Nut Squares) and am waking my body up with the morning ritual of calisthenics and treadmill. I hate running indoors, but I'll take it over the weather outside. I still think my Nordic Track was invented by the descendants of those great guys who pulled the Spanish Inquisition on us, but it also makes a great towel rack and clothes valet, so maybe there's something to it.


I am excited that Christopher is coming to church with me this morning. I have been sharing life and time with him ever since we met and I can tell he is looking for truth. The job he has right now is eating him alive, but he finds it hard to say no to it and walk away. God is going to have to handle that one, as I refuse to interfere in someones life without clear direction. We just laid around and talked this morning for a bit real early. Amazing...

The only thing that concerns me at times, is an attraction that seems to be present on both our parts, and I do not want to move in any fashion that takes him away from the truth and faith he seeks. I will not date to save, if that makes sense? I desire to be the true friend he needs, not the one he (and I) think that he wants. It would be alot easier if he wasn't so smoking hot! I know the best thing to do, is always include him in my group stuff and keep our time alone careful and intentional. We have talked at length at where the boundaries in our friendship are, which is alot better than leaving it to chance. I am a weak guy, and prone to falling, and that would hinder and damage the ministry I could be to him. Remember that, Daemon. Don't come back here later with a bad story and a bag of excuses...mkay?

Got some new clothes to wear, so that makes me happy and also just pulled a favorite pair of jeans out of the dryer. Why is it, that jeans, straight from the laundry fit so well, and feel so good? It is going to be a whirlwind of a day! I've got miles to go before I sleep...

In reference to my last post...I am adjusting and learning to understand myself and others. I think that people in my life mean well, but they are struggling at times to express themselves, just as much as I am floundering trying to understand them. I refuse to read evil intent into their words and actions. If that is their motive, so be it. I will not sink to their level. Rise above, sailor man. Behold...the power of the wind.

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Misunderstood



Something I have noticed more of late, and that has been illustrated to me today, is that the more I question myself and attempt change, the more the people around me do not understand me. It seems if I am bucking their accepted version of my past life, with my continuing differences that are occurring, as I make greater steps in my spiritual journey.

They are not happy with the fact that my status is in a state of flux or transition. Some of them miss the "old" Daemon and others are just growing weary with a struggle in the "new" Daemon that they see no merit in. Am I wasting my time? Wasting it on people who don't get it? Wasting it on myself about issues that really don't matter in eternity?

B.C.

Before Christ in my life, things were simple, life was good. All the lines and labels were crisply drawn and delineated and there was no conflict or struggle over how to live. I had accepted myself and the future I had planned and was living my "dream". My friends and family interacted with me based on my presentation of life, and yes meant yes, and no meant no. There was no gray area about what I believed, or did not believe. No conflict in my mind and life about who I was, what I was doing and the choices I made.

A.C.

After Christ...things are just jacked, well, if not jacked, at least much more complicated. (Yes, I am not addressing His salvation and the other benefits as a child of God, while eternal and enormous, but am looking at the here and now reality without alot of fancy church speak.) I do not understand what is going on. My family and friends do not understand what is going on. I have labels... I don't have labels? What am I? Where do all these rules and doctrines come from? (You keep saying the Bible, but I have read it and still am not seeing your words) Who changed the game? Now I am stuck between the friends I have left behind, who are at loss for words about the choices I am making, and the new friends I have made, who expect me to be like them, believe and live like them with no practice or room for error. Hell, you all even speak your own weird language at times, with your terms and words that don't seem to have a glossary or even standard definition.

This is one messed up system of belief and I feel caught in the middle. I cannot unbelieve what I have seen as the truth, but, I also can't live with all these expectations that other people (not God) are placing on me as their definition of what a Christian should be. It seems that things have switched from a political/social scene (former life) to a religious/morality scene (current life) where in both scenes people are vying for mystical, invisible points, favor and status.

I don't want to play this game any more.

I am tired of not understanding all of you Christian people or whatever it is you call yourself these days. (I have yet to feel a part of anything and truly belong)

I am hurt and grieved by the words you say to me and the treatment you offer to me and others like me.

The only people who have walked this path with me, accepting my questions and new beliefs have been people from my past. They neither condemn nor approve of each new tact I try. They want me to be happy, even if that is single and celibate. Do they understand love better than church people?

Let me be clear, I am not forsaking my faith, I am simply struggling with my place, where I fit in, and the way I am being treated. Yes, I may not have it all in order, or understand everything you do, but please help me out! You wouldn't treat a child like this, when he was having a hard time walking?

I want to understand. I want to be understood.

Please stop hurting me with your help.



In the Quiet




This morning was full of music from the instant I awoke. Light flooded the bedroom and warmed the down comforter on me, but the day had to begin! I found myself either roaring or growling when I awoke(not sure which), which while different, is not so odd with me. Vocalization and sounds, odd voices...all normal in Daemonland...but what was I growling/roaring about?

My first real thought of the day was, "What in the world are the doctors doing when they tap on my abs and stomach with their fingers?" I have a sneaking suspicion they are just filling time, one saw another do it and copied him... it serves no purpose and it's just their way of looking like they are busy while talking to me. Some kind of physical rapport thing, like a waiter touching my shoulder, or sitting in my booth while taking my order? Hmmm...random, I know.

After feasting on sounds all morning, I sit here in the quiet sun, reading blogs, checking mail, answering messages and all the creative activities that keep us in contact with one another. I can hear myself breath, the creak of the leather chair and my knees and ankles pop when I stretch hard. Why do I always strive to fill the silence at times? Even in the woods, on top of a mountain or in the middle of water...there is sound. But do I listen?

I have an inner monologue that is always running, sometimes on several different tracks at the same time, about so many varied things, but sometimes it feels good to just stop. It gets odd when my mouth starts answering the wrong track of thoughts to people who are on another rail line.

To be intentional in my thinking...

All of my blog posts to date have been reactionary, something put up here while in the moment, speaking off the top of my head. I have seen others carefully write and examine issues in their lives or current events. I tend to do neither. What does that say of me...of them?

I guess this is my way of sharing my mind speak, that internal monologue, with other people, but it rarely hints of what I truly believe. It has been a safe place to doubt and kick around ideas. I know that it is rarely interesting, but I hesitate to share what I feel deeply about things.

The real Daemon still is kind of bottled up and cut off. That inner me that I keep for myself.

So here in the quiet, while the fire pops and heating sighs with warmth, I think about it.

I will come back later with something worth saying.

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Old Skool Playlist :)

Musings since Snow


Morning broke with an amazing blaze of light. Newly fallen snow blanketed silently the ever familiar forms of this place I call home. A hush, never broken, and calm seemed to call me to expectancy.

Something is happening...wait for it...yes.

This is peace.

Rest man child. Cease your fumblings and strainings.

Look and see...watch and listen. Open your eyes and ears, but be still.

Put your head down on my chest and listen to my heart.

In the quiet...I am here.

Greater love has no man than this...

Portents of a new day full of the bustle and activity that all too often follows this holiday season. In my body I still feel some ache and tightness from everything undertaken this week, the good and the bad, but all in all, I feel excellent! Living well and taking care of this physical gift has done well by me. In my life at times, I have wished for another, or a difference, but as time goes by, I find myself appreciating and loving the one I have. Everyone else has seemed to enjoy it, but we always want something different than us. Is it odd that I still consider myself a small guy? My eyes tell me different, being over 6 feet tall, but inside of it, I still feel like the little child at times. Must be a head space I live in. Looking of a man, feeling of a boy. Grow me up.

Trimming more Christmas trees today! I look forward to spending time at church with family and friends, sharing life and making things look beautiful for others. I get a charge out a decorating that is similar to finishing construction projects or working on my cars. I guess arranging flowers can feel as good as a great bonfire? I think contentment and happiness is oten found in diverse activities, but it still impacts us the same, and "feels" the same inside.

Eh...rambling...kind of normal for me I guess.

It is almost time for coffee...but after sleeping in today (morning off) I just don't want to get out of my jammies. Rag wool socks feel like sweaters for my feet and this crushed fleece hoodie and flannel pants just might be the uniform of the day? I can pull some ski pants and goretex over it all and bundle off on errands. I'll just call it my base layer for a comfy day...yeah! Its a working pajama day. I like it and declare it so!

Input and emails from friends and strangers. So many words pointed at me. Questions needing answers, people reaching out. How to keep up with it all and still retain some space for me? I think ministry can be this simple at times. Kind words finding questioning hearts. The presence of a friend at an event, just for support and love being near. We all need each other, sometimes when words are not enough. I pray that I am present for my friends as they are for me. The gathering of men, the nearness of being, often helps us through swift water, even when words are not exchanged. I will be there for you, will you be there for me?

Hmm...need to get this day going! Day light is burning. I have much to write about, but need to sift the thoughts through the winnow of the day, burn off the dross and distill what is truly running like still water underneath.

Oh...and SHOPPING! :) I hate it when my car is dirty, maybe switch to the truck today?

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Grace and Forgiveness







Well rested somehow and awake again to another day...but no snow? I confront another day with my shoulders square and head lifted. We can do this.

I am learning that I have a warped and skewed concept of God. Since I started this spiritual journey, I think that some vestige of an idea has lingered over me, and it is not correct or right. God loves me and gave all that He had in order to pursue a relationship for me.

He is not lying in wait to trap me, to somehow "catch me" and then pull back all of His promises and love. While He does not tolerate sin and is jealous of me, there is no cloak and dagger game going on, where He is trying to get out of the gift that He offers me of peace and comfort, eternal life, personal relationship and hope.

Somewhere along the way of life, I got this idea that He was this stern, mean, cruel and disapproving person that could not wait to punish me. You better watch out man...He is going to judge you and smash your world. I need to learn who He really is. He loves me.

The Bible teaches me if I confess my sin, He is faithful to and just to forgive me AND to cleanse me from it all. So God, I confess it. You know what I did. I know what I did.

Let me be perfectly clear...

It was wrong.

Help me to walk away from it and please clean me up. I get so mucked and dirty in this world, Dad and want to be right...not just do right. Please help me today.

Monday, December 7, 2009

Hmm...


I am an idiot at times, making decisions that go against all that I believe now. Why is the body so strong and the mind and soul so weak?

Sharing life should not come at quite so high a cost

Today will be better and I do not know how to finish what I started.

Choices have lasting impact, and this morning and life feels shattered.

There is pleasure in sin for a season, but I am worried that my heart is engaged now. I have not felt this way about another person in a long time.

I'm a sucker for short guys, curly hair and a winsome smile. How can something that feels so right be so wrong? Good, strong things come often in smaller packages, though not all things were small. Woof!

Making my way through today with coffee and a smile will be a challenge. My heart and head are heavy with regret, hope and a downcast mischievous grin. Where to now, oh my soul?

I need to check in, shape up or ship out. I don't even know how to ask for help.

Forsake me not.

Something in me grasps for the ephemeral and the closeness and shared life fits well, like a broke in pair of jeans and comfy sweater. Would I walk this way again?

I only have two hands, and they are full. How to empty them and walk uprightly? Tonight will bring its own challenges.

Is it possible to move back and put a guy in his rightful place after having had him and us? It was a maddening fight for control and domination, tempered by surrender and soft closeness. Give and take, over and over.

The chimes ring out for another start. I am out of the gates, and I feel the beast is loosed. Take him and this from me if it is not to be.

What an amazing experience. Do I dare share again?





*Authors note*

This post was written "in the moment" and does not accurately reflect my desire to live as a forgiven and upright child of God. After some reflection, I am concerned it may send the wrong message. I in no way condone a sexual relationship outside of marriage. My actions were wrong. This post was nothing more than the confused heart and head space after making a bad decision. My apologies if any offense was taken.

Frackkkkkkkkk






Okay, prolly shouldn't post right now, but man. Tonight....crap. Work, good...church, good....dinner and then Derek.

WTF?

He's in the shower now.

Tonight.

Gone.

I am happy, sad, confused and conflicted.

FML.

G'nite.







*Authors note*

This post was written "in the moment" and does not accurately reflect my desire to live as a forgiven and upright child of God. After some reflection, I am concerned it may send the wrong message. I in no way condone a sexual relationship outside of marriage. My actions were wrong. This post was nothing more than the confused heart and head space after making a bad decision. My apologies if any offense was taken.

Saturday, December 5, 2009

Freaking Emotions...



A long day rising and how it goes. From the sun break, coffee dripped wee hours till this night place dark time I lay my head, many things have found me well.

Wow...what a day! Woke up before my alarm and coffee pot this morning (thanks Stevie J, long story) and kicked this days ass!

OK...not really. Had the Men's Breakfast this morning with all the guys from the church (not really all of them, but quite a few of us younger guys) and that started out okay, but went some really strange places. The food was Awesome! (thanks David P. and all the guys that cooked, the food was GREAT!) After eating and hanging out, we circled up to share some life and that's when all kinds of weird emotions hit me out of the blue. I mean, I know alot of these guys, some of them very closely, but suddenly I was sad and scared and confused. I have no idea where all this came from, but I couldn't share. I was unable to even make eye contact with anyone in the group and had to keep fighting off tears.

Needless to say, this really freaked me out, and I started counting the links on my bracelet and reciting all the names of the guys I have dated, been with, or slept with. What was that all about? Why did they pop into my head? Why do I remember their names? I didn't feel like I was worthy to be a part of this group of males and somehow that was related to my being gay. I have never felt excluded from a group of men in my life, in fact am most often the aggressive leader of the pack, and now fear, insecurity and emotions just blindside me? I got through it and tried to beat a retreat to work, but the friends were having none of it.

It is kind of hard to fidget with a stainless steel chain, mutter to yourself and cry without attracting someones attention...

So, spent some time with Stephen and David, explaining what I was feeling. I listened to them and was encouraged a 'lil bit (hugs helped), but went on to work with the feeling that I don't fit in anywhere. I don't understand all this. I have never felt this way before. Where is this coming from? Why do I feel so strongly cut off, even in the face of all this overwhelming love and support from my friends and brothers?

Work was good but long...too many hot guys, cute guys, beautiful guys...ya get the picture.

Got out of there and went to the Art Auction at the JW Gallery tonight. It was a fundraiser for our friends in the Pokot tribe in Africa. Each year we raise money to drill more wells for fresh water (last year we raised 60K, woot woot!) Tonight was soooo much fun, and all those weird emotions were gone, or at least for awhile. Everyone was there and looked so happy and shiny. Man, I love my friends!

We sold some awesome pieces of art (Stephen bought 3 himself) and it was amazing! Micah's band played for us and the silent and live auctions went smashingly. The only piece I wanted, I lost at the last bids...by a freaking obscene amount. GRRRRRRRR! I was sorry to have lost the art, but thankful that this person donated so much for such a worthy cause. More people will have water...life...and we will be able to share with them the living water, which is Christ Jesus. Oh...and the food...YES!

Anyway, that was my day today. I sit here with my feet up, eating a snack and downing water while preparing for yet another day. Church and work tomorrow...what a weird combo and collision of worlds. I'll sleep well tonight and re-examine later that weird emotional break, when my heart and mind feel around to it.

Tonight...I sleep alone.

Friday, December 4, 2009

Yawn and Stretch!






Wow...another night of dead to the world sleep! I think this is a direct result of a clean conscious, nothing intruding, bothering, worrying or convicting me. Not a care in the world on waking up. Just laying in the sun and stretching till every chord and sinew in my body vibrated with its own simple thrumming tune. That ever happen to anyone else?

Last night at small group was interesting. We went over Deth's message last Sunday and then practiced Lectio Divina. During that, we read aloud the same passage of scripture 6 different times, paired into couples, male then female. After each reading we reflect, think upon and share the different thoughts, emotions and then actions something found prompts us too. While it may seem a bit liturgical, it is amazing what examining ourselves before the Scripture reveals. So personal and communal at the same time. While at first, I felt out of place with these people from church, I am finding my niche, or spot. How different we are all. Most of them are married with kids, lives more complex beyond my imaginings, but I too have something to share from my perspective. They have never lived a life like mine either.

Today will be interesting I am sure. The sun is out, music sounds super awesome and I am getting ready for a run and workout. Coffee fills the air with its rich morning perfume and all is well with the world. All too often I get caught up in complicated scenarios when each day, life could be this simple, if I would let it be. My body feels and looks good today. It is amazing what a good diet, exercise and sleep will do for ones physical plant. I rejoice in the body fantastic today!

I will have to miss dinner with Stephen tonight, unless by some stroke of luck they let me off the schedule. Being ok with that I am. Hope all is well with those whose eyes grace this page at some random time. If you have found your way here...you are loved. If you seek for answers, I pray you find. While looking for love, never neglect to look up...and out. Peace.

Thursday, December 3, 2009

Struggling but winning...



Yesterday was a beautiful day, and I almost succeeded in wrecking it. It started out simple enough. Got cleaned up and ran some errands and then decided to run by and see Richard at work. I had a few beers and we talked. Ended up running into Scott again and his ink work is coming along nicely, almost a full sleeve done now. Long story short, had a few more beers (bad decision) and ended up running the pool table for a while. Somewhere in the course of the after noon, Scott decided he liked me again and began showing his interest in my life and me. While I liked the attention, something inside of me kept saying, "Stop". I could list all of the reasons, but I knew I was in over my head.

I decided to call Geoff and he got up there in a hurry. I explained the situation with Scott and he started running some defensive interference for me. He's a good blocker, but Scott was insistent and kept shooting down all my explanations and stories. I was torn. He is a great guy, good head on his shoulders, great shoulders too and definitely "my type". Short, blond curly hair and built. I love the tatt's hes been working on, but also know that he is not available, to me, or anyone else.

He seemed to think that I was cool with their open relationship (him and the boyfriend) but I couldn't make him see that it wasn't going to happen. It is almost as if he could see the struggle inside of me and was trying to wear me down. Finally, I just got up and left. Geoff was busy talking to a friend of his, and I was exhausted inside of my head and knew I needed to go home before my body made the decision for me.

Soooo...I won one with God's help and learned that it is never too late to call a friend for help, but on the other hand, I think that the drinking and hanging out with friends at my old haunts is not a good thing right now in my life. I am not strong enough, or single minded enough to sit at peace in the midst of temptation. But how to walk away from it all? I will miss my friends, but our gatherings seem to revolve around drinking, dancing and hanging out at the local clubs. This is not the testimony I wish to portray and seems alot like the life I left when Jesus called me to Him. Just because I am Christian now, doesn't give me the right to live so close to the edge.

I feel great today, after much sleep (about 10 hours) and know that I need to make better decisions. I need more good Christian friends and maybe need to cut out some people, places and activities that keep taking me close to the edge. I cannot calm the beast within if I keep feeding him. Simple steps, but oh so hard to take. I am being challenged to live righteously in this present world. So how about we don't drink or hang out with my gay friends for awhile? They don't seem to be building me up.

Tonight I think I am going to share some more of my testimony at small group. Everyone loves me to death, but I need some more real world accountability and would benefit from these guys and girls walking along side of me. By being weak and sharing my life, I may help someone else who is struggling in their own way. I know that they know I am gay, but I don't think they quite understand the constant fight that I live out daily. I present too well, am always too polished and never admit weakness. That needs to change...we all need help with something.

Side note: Stephen called and wants to have dinner on Friday night. I am working late, so cannot, and this frustrates me and also relieves me? Upset that I don't get to spend time with him, but also know that I need to tread carefully in that friendship, not only for my hearts sake, but for his as well. I worry about how I feel about him and know that it will have to be talked out soon. Since I don't know where he is coming from, we need to communicate about what we are doing here. Where is this relationship going? How can we live out a Godly friendship and also not make space for something that should not be? I am just a Jonathan looking for my David.

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

It was a good day.



Short post here...I made good choices all day. I actually have no regrets for this time. I feel different, odd, cleaner, less confused. Above all...I have some peace. More reflections later.