Monthly Archives: July 2008

I am NOT an abomination!

I feel compelled to write about this due to a post that Amber has on her blog, and some of the feedback I know that typically comes from this topic:  HOMOSEXUALITY.  As I stated to a friend earlier today, I don’t get angry about the topic much anymore, as much as become determined, almost indignant, on needing to firmly state why I feel the way that I do about this.  And, I have to say, I would feel firmly that homosexuality is as natural in humanity as heterosexuality, even if I were not a lesbian.  But I am a lesbian, and I know in my heart of hearts that I am EXACTLY as God intended me to be.

Now, I am not writing this post as a testament to what science is proving in terms of sexual orientation and genetics; Amber has done a terrific job with that.  I am not writing this post as a way to quote passages of Scripture, to defend why they are misinterpreted.  I am writing this from a feeling, human perspective.  It is just the way that I do things, try to bring the personal perspective to the table, which is not always considered when the various sides of this issue take their positions and refuse to see another point of view as valid.

I feel firmly confident in the fact that God has created me, as well as millions of other gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender persons, in His image, and exactly as He wanted us to be.  I would, and do, believe that regardless if science seemed to indicate that there is genetic differences or not, that God meant for this to be.  I feel fully connected to God and to my spirituality, not in spite of being gay, but because I am gay.  I am a kind, generous human being, I give willingly to others, I try to be fair and not wasteful, and I have a committed, lifelong partner whom I am devoted to.  We are raising a well adjusted, beautiful daughter and doing a fine job.  God has blessed us in so many ways, because of who we are.

This is usually where the conversation goes to the area of “love the sinner, hate the sin” kind of statements, referring to being gay as being a “choice” of “lifestyle”, and that we are “giving in” to “sinful urges” without restraint.  While I will not be discussing my own sexual behavior here, since that is just not my style, I will say that sexual orientation, or in my case, being a lesbian, is about SO MUCH MORE than sexual behavior, sexual activity, sexual intimacy.  Yes, that is part of it in most of the couple relationships that I am acquainted with, as in most committed relationships.  That is PART of what connects two persons to one another.  But, think about it for a minute, when you meet someone that you know may be a significant person to you, one to whom you are attracted, how would you describe that attraction?  Some of us have had the experience of being attracted to a person physically or sexually only, with nothing else much there.  That has not been my typical experience, but that is not what I am talking about here.  I am talking about falling in love, being attracted to a person on all levels:  physically, sexually, emotionally, psychologically, soulfully, prayerfully- the heart to heart connection that comes with those that we fall in love with madly.  THAT is what orientation is about.  If I were to describe a heterosexual orientation as only about sex, or sexual attraction or intimacy, I would be diminishing it and leaving out so much else that describes and defines a couple relationship.

And, just as there are messed up persons in this world who are heterosexual, married or not, so is the case in the homosexual world as well.  Not much difference there.  However, there are many of us that are monogamous, in committed, long term relationships, who are not unfaithful and want to spend the rest of our lives together, God willing.  Would there really need to be a focus on what it is that we do intimately if we were allowed to be married?  If that were to sanction our committed relationship, then really, who would care how we conduct ourselves?  And, for those that think that the institution of marriage will be ultimately destroyed, and the foundation of our society shattered if homosexual persons are allowed to marry one another, wouldn’t you agree that marriage could use some help these days?  I mean, the most recent statistic is that almost half, if not half, of marriages end in divorce?  How can we worsen those types of numbers? Isn’t it remotely possible that we might boost the chances of happy marriage?

I know some people, many people actually, some of whom are gay, some not, who were raised in households and communities and churches, that told them that being a homosexual was against God, unnatural, and an abomination, and who believed it for much of their lives.  Some of those same people have had changes of hearts and minds over their lifetime, by realizing that being gay and being in God’s image could co-exist.  I am so grateful for those persons in my life.  I am so glad to know that instead of bringing out fear and loathing in other human beings, that I can illicit appreciation, compassion and joy at who I genuinely am. 

I am gay, I am worthy, I am loved, and I am a child of God. Amen.

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I’ve got a feeling

Different people call it different things.  Having a feeling.  Intuition.  Sixth sense.  Awareness.  Signs from God, from the Universe.  I have called it many things myself.  There is no doubt in my mind that it is a true phenomenon.  That we all have this internal voice, the voice of knowing or sensing, but we don’t always listen or pay attention to it. 

We have all had situations when persons that care about us give us advice, whether solicited or not.  There are times when it is helpful to get input from another person, another point of view.  The challenge of this I believe, is when we only give credence to the advice of others, and not heeding our own inner knowing. 

It isn’t that others don’t give us good guidance; even when I haven’t been ready to hear it, I have gotten good input and advice from those around me.  The bottom line for me is though, unless it rings true with what I really feel inside my own heart, my own soul, it probably won’t work for me, no matter how sound the advice is.  Just as friends here have done, and have experienced, we need to pay attention to the signs.  We need to be aware of what the Universe is actually saying to us; pay attention to what our souls are saying.  You see, they are always saying something, whether it is a loud shout or a small, barely noticed whisper.  But, they never stop communicating with us.  We need to heed it, even if we are not ready to act on it.

We always know what is best for us, whether we believe it or not.  Not the rational, I know the best answer to this dilemma best for us….. the I feel it in my heart of hearts that this is the best decision, the best road, the best answer to what my soul and heart are longing for.  It doesn’t mean it will be easy, or convenient, or without hardship, but it does mean it is the right thing for us.  When I look back on my life, I have to say that the most meaningful events and moments of my life, were after a great deal of hard work, perseverance, determination.  None of them came easily.  Sometimes, I heeded the signs that I encountered along the way.  Sometimes, I ignored the blaring, flashing signs even though they were SCREAMING at me; later on, I knew the signs had been right there and true all the time.  As I have gotten older, I have tried to make the process a bit easier on myself, by listening in the first place.

Why not listen?  Are we too stubborn to admit that maybe we were wrong about something, because we were approaching it logically?  Are we too afraid to tell a person giving us guidance that they may be guiding us differently than we know in our hearts that we need to go?  Are we just plain old afraid of what it might mean, to listen and heed what we are being guided to?  None of those reasons are reasons enough not to go after your hearts content, your true bliss, that which you were meant to follow.  For every moment that we use in puruing that which is not right for us, we miss an opportunity to be fully engaged in this life in a way that brings us contentment.  So why do that to ourselves?

Go ahead, listen.  What are you REALLY feeling?  What is your soul telling you today?

Do yourself a favor and listen….. REALLY listen. 

What inspires me?

I have been thinking about my answer(s) to this meme question for days now…….. thinking, thinking, and thinking, which should come as no surprise to those that know me.  So, I have made a list, although exhaustive, I am sure by no means complete.  So, here it is….

*Children:  From newborn babies to grown ups who are children, the wonder, the awe, the discovery, and the beautiful innocence of children inspires me, and reminds me that God does really exist.

*Nature:  Birds, bees, trees, rocks, ocean, river, woods, every bit and part of it.  From the tiny pinecone that I find in my yard, to the mighty bears that I know wander our woods, to the new baby bunnies that are born every year, and the leaves that we pick up in the fall to admire their vibrant colors.  Nature, in all of its splendor, inspires me to remember what I am REALLY connected to:  the earth.

*Feelings and emotions:  I am such a FEELING person; it is what I do first when meeting someone; I FEEL them and their energy.  I am not able to just meet someone, and have it be a surface experience.  Of course, it doesn’t mean that the feeling is always positive, but it is like seeking and connecting with a soul; really trying to be where that person is at; having a compassion and connection to another’s reality.  I cry easily, and I let the tears be my guide as to what I need to process or focus on; I allow myself that free expression and it hardly ever steers me wrong.

*LOVE:  This one is a biggie for me.  I love to express love; love to feel love; love to remember on a daily basis that above all else, Love is what we are all about, it is why we are here, it is why Jesus was on this earth, it is why we have the will to go on.

*Faith:  I can walk into a house of worship, or sit by the sea, and realize how mighty and grand God really is.  In those moments, I can feel His presence the strongest, in those parts of connection to my spiritual self where His presence just cannot be missed.  I have such a strong faith that EVERYTHING that happens to me and those I love is for a reason, a reason I may not always understand initially, but one that always comes to be known.

*Family:  My immediate family, my family of choice, my extended family and my in laws, as well as those that have come to mean the same to me as “family” that I have met over the years.  My family members inspire me in so many diverse ways, in their ability to persevere, to cope, and to be there for one another. 

In a nutshell, I would have to say that what inspires me is LIFE.  Each moment, each breath, each grain of life that we savor and experience, whether joy or sorrow, is an inspiration to me.  When I really stop to think about the fact that I stand here, I exist, I breathe, and there is only a breath that separates me from here, and death, I am in total awe of the vastness of that.  And, I become inspired, and humbled and moved. 

We are just so lucky to be here…. and moreso, to be here TOGETHER…….

Dear mom and dad,

I want to take this opportunity to tell you both how much I love you, and appreciate your presence in my life.  You have both been such great supports to me, and have always let me know how much you love me, and how proud you are of me and what I have accomplished.  That means so much to me.  Your visit here a couple of weeks ago was such a great one, I feel like I was a grownup for the first time when I was having you both for a visit, like I was caring for you both, I was the hostess and you were getting to be the visitors and enjoy yourselves.  Of course, that visit was way too short, but I know that we will be together again soon.

So much makes me appreciate and have concerns about both of you, as I get older, and as I know that you each have needs that you have to take care of, I worry more about how you are doing and that you are healthy and happy.  Mom, I know that your problems with your back, and with your legs, are something that interfere with your daily living at times, but I also know that it is very important for you to not overdo it; for you to take it easy, and let other people help you, whether that is dad, or your kids, or your friends, you need to not do more than your body can handle.  I am so proud of your getting in shape to stay more healthy, just please be safe.  I know in what ways I am most like you; giving, loving, and wanting to help out others in need.  I feel so close to you throughout my life, and feel so fortunate that I have had such a loving relationship with you over the years.  Thank you for always being there for me.

Dad, I have always admired and had such respect for what you have sacrificed and done for our family.  You taught me to work hard, always give my best, speak my mind, and to also be kind and fair to others.  You also impressed upon me the need to always work my hardest to achieve what I want in life.  I know that those qualities in you have always influenced the kind of adult that I have become, and I have never settled for second best because of that, I work my hardest to put forth my best foot.  Sometimes, I drive myself crazy with that, but I know that even if my results are a disappointment, I have done my best.  I worry about you as well; my worries for you are a little more complex, in that what I worry about for you is the elephant in the room, the issue that none of us as your children have ever discussed with you.  Dad, I worry so much about your drinking.  Maybe today, or even this week, you have given it up for a time, but I worry anyway.  I worry because I know that the amount of alcohol that you consume is not healthy for a person; I know that you don’t appear as healthy as you could be, and that alcohol is part of that; I know that when you are stressed, upset, angry, or depressed, you tend to drink more and more often, and I can’t assume that you don’t have control over that, but I know it must be a challenge.  I know, because I also have the legacy of addiction.  I don’t say that to blame you, or in any form of resentment toward you, but I have to fight that battle, I have been fighting it my whole adult life.  Sometimes, it has gotten the best of me, other times, I have full and effective control over it.  Sometimes, it’s booze, sometimes it’s food, sometimes it’s unnecessary shopping and spending.  For today, I know that I can have balance in my life, by moderating all of those activities.

I love you so much.  There is no doubt about that.  But, the bottom line is, I don’t want to lose you before it is absolutely necessary.  I have thought about this letter so many times, but now, after this last visit, seemed like the right time to send it to you.  You are an amazing person, and I have never doubted your love for me.  Please, please do not doubt my love for you by the contents of my letter.  I am writing this out of my love for you.  I know that you need to make your own choices in life, and I will not think any different or less of you, no matter what happens after you receive this; my love and respect for you could never fade away.  I just believe in truth, truth in the name of love, and that is what this is.

I love you both so much.  I can’t wait to see you again…….

The Sandpiper.

 

The Sandpiper

by Robert Peterson  

 

 

She was six years old when I first met her on the beach near where I live.  

I drive to this beach, a distance of three or four miles, whenever the world  
begins to close in on me
.  She was building a sand castle or something  
and looked up, her eyes as blue as the sea.  

 

‘Hello,’ she said.  

 

 

I answered with a nod, not really in the mood to bother with a small child.  

 

‘I’m building,’ she said.  

 

 

‘I see that.  What is it?’  I asked, not really caring.  

 

‘Oh, I don’t know, I just like the feel of sand.’  

 

 

That sounds good, I thought, and slipped off my shoes.  

 

A sandpiper glided by.  

 

 

‘That’s a joy,’ the child said.  

 

‘It’s a what?’  

 

 

‘It’s a joy.  My mama says sandpipers come to bring us joy.’  

 

The bird went gliding down the beach.  Good-bye joy, I muttered to myself,  

hello pain, and turned to walk on.  I was depressed, my life seemed  

completely out of balance.  

 

 

‘What’s your name?’  She wouldn’t give up.  

 

‘Robert,’ I answered..  ‘I’m Robert Peterson.’  

 

 

‘Mine’s Wendy… I’m six.’  

 

‘Hi, Wendy.’  

 

 

She giggled.  ‘You’re funny,’ she said.  

 

In spite of my gloom, I laughed too and walked on.  

Her musical giggle followed me.  

 

 

‘Come again, Mr. P,’ she called.  ‘We’ll have another happy day.’  

 

The next few days consisted of a group of unruly Boy Scouts, PTA meetings,  

and an ailing mother.  The sun was shining one morning as I took my hands out  

of the dishwater.  I need a sandpiper, I said to myself, gathering up my coat.  

 

 

The ever-changing balm of the seashore awaited me.  The breeze was  

chilly but I strode along, trying to recapture the serenity I needed.  
 

‘Hello, Mr. P,’ she said.  ‘Do you want to play?’  

 

 

‘What did you have in mind?’ I asked, with a twinge of annoyance.  

 

‘I don’t know.  You say.’  

 

 

‘How about charades?’  I asked sarcastically.  

 

The tinkling laughter burst forth again.  ‘I don’t know what that is.’  

 

 

‘Then let’s just walk.’  

 

Looking at her, I noticed the delicate fairness of her face.  

‘Where do you live?’ I asked.  

 

 

‘Over there.’  She pointed toward a row of summer cottages.  

 

Strange, I thought, in winter.  

 

 

‘Where do you go to school?’  

 

‘I don’t go to school.  Mommy says we’re on vacation.’  

 

 

She chattered little girl talk as we strolled up the beach, but my mind was  

on other things.  When I left for home, Wendy said it had been a happy day.  
Feeling surprisingly better, I smiled at her and agreed.  

 

Three weeks later, I rushed to my beach in a state of near panic.  I was in no  

mood to even greet Wendy.  I thought I saw her mother on the porch and felt  

like demanding she keep her child at home.  

 

 

‘Look, if you don’t mind,’ I said crossly when Wendy caught up with me, ‘I’d  

rather be alone today.’  She seemed unusually pale and out of breath.  
 

‘Why?’ she asked.  

 

 

I turned to her and shouted, ‘Because my mother died!’ and thought,  

My God, why was I saying this to a little child?  
 

‘Oh,’ she said quietly, ‘then this is a bad day.’  

 

 

‘Yes,’ I said, ‘and yesterday and the day before and — oh, go away!’  

 

‘Did it hurt?’ she inquired.  

 

 

‘Did what hurt?’ I was exasperated with her, with myself.  

 

‘When she died?’  

 

 

‘Of course it hurt!’ I snapped, misunderstanding,  

wrapped up in myself.  I strode off.  
 

A month or so after that, when I next went to the beach, she wasn’t there.  

Feeling guilty, ashamed, and admitting to myself I missed her, I went up  

to the cottage after my walk and knocked at the door.  A drawn looking  

young woman with honey-colored hair opened the door.  

 

 

‘Hello,’ I said, ‘I’m Robert Peterson.  I missed your little girl today  

and wondered where she was.’  
 

‘Oh yes, Mr. Peterson, please come in.  Wendy spoke of you so much.  

I’m afraid I allowed her to bother you.  If she was a nuisance,  

please, accept my apologies.’  

 

 

‘Not at all — she’s a delightful child.’  I said, suddenly realizing  

that I meant what I had just said.  
 

‘Wendy died last week, Mr. Peterson.  She had leukemia.  

Maybe she didn’t tell you.’  

 

 

Struck dumb, I groped for a chair.  I had to catch my breath.  

 

‘She loved this beach, so when she asked to come, we couldn’t say no.  

She seemed so much better here and had a lot of what she called happy days.  

But the last few weeks, she declined rapidly…’ Her voice faltered, ‘She left  

something for you, if only I can find it.  Could you wait a moment while I look?’  

 

 

I nodded stupidly, my mind racing for something to say to this lovely young  

woman.  She handed me a smeared envelope with ‘MR. P’ printed in bold  
childish letters.  Inside was a drawing in bright crayon hues — a yellow beach,  
a blue sea, and a brown bird.  Underneath was carefully printed:  

 

A SANDPIPER TO BRING YOU JOY.  

 

 

Tears welled up in my eyes, and a heart that had almost forgotten to love  

opened wide.  I took Wendy’s mother in my arms.  ‘I’m so sorry, I’m so sorry,  
I’m so sorry,’ I uttered over and over, and we wept together.  The precious little  
picture is framed now and hangs in my study.  Six words — one for each year  
of her life — that speak to me of harmony, courage, and undemanding love.  

 

A gift from a child with sea blue eyes and hair the color of sand  

— who taught me the gift of love.

 

 

NOTE: This is a true story sent out by Robert Peterson.  It happened over 20  

years ago and the incident changed his life forever.  It serves as a reminder  

to all of us that we need to take time to enjoy living and life and each other.  

The price of hating other human beings is loving oneself less.  

 

 

Life is so complicated, the hustle and bustle of everyday traumas  

can make us lose focus about what is truly important  
or what is only a momentary setback or crisis.  

 

This week, be sure to give your loved ones an extra hug, and by all means,  

take a moment… even if it is only ten seconds, to stop and smell the roses.  

 

 

This comes from someone’s heart, and is read by many  

and now I share it with you…  
 

May God Bless everyone who receives this!  There are NO coincidences!  

 

 

Everything that happens to us happens for a reason.  Never brush aside  

anyone as insignificant.  Who knows what they can teach us?  

 

 

I wish for you, a sandpiper.  

 

 


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I was just sent this by a friend today, and I had to share it with the world……it is a beautiful, innocent story, that reminds us all to not let any moments go by, I mean ANY moments, to tell those that we care about how much we do; to not dwell on the details that annoy us; to live our lives joyfully, purposefully, fully…….. that is to truly live, my friends.

I wish for all of you, a sandpiper.