Tag Archives: partner

Moving day.

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Two weeks ago was moving day.  It was the official day that my love and I moved in together, along with my teenaged daughter.  Although we had spoken about doing it for quite some time, we decided to make the move a year earlier than planned.

 

It is interesting to me all of the details related to moving from one home to another, even when they are anticipated.  I felt sadness, at leaving my previous home, as did my daughter and my partner.  For the last two years, my daughter and I had done many things to make our apartment our home.  We had filled it with our favorite belongings, laughed and cried there, and had adventures and mishaps.  I had become my own person there, fell in love, and grieved the ending of my life as I knew it.  My daughter had grown from an early adolescent to a confident young woman.

 

Then there were the subtleties of moving into what I perceived as another person’s space.  Even though we discussed how we wanted our home to be a complete blend of the three of us, I still had my thoughts trying to convince me that it was my partner’s home, and my daughter and I were moving into it.  Even though I have spent almost a year, feeling completely at home in it, it didn’t feel like mine.  Until, I made it mine, and my daughter made it hers.  Not just by bringing our things into it physically, but also, by having a vision of how we wanted it to be.  BEING in it as our true selves.

 

So much about any life transition, even if it is a new and exciting one, is about open and loving communication.  Although our home is a space for all of us to feel connected to and comfortable in, we have created space that is individualized to each of us.  We have talked about where to hang things on the wall and which coffee mugs to use.  I have cleared some items away that no longer speak to me, and have special items that have to be in a certain place.  Through all of that, the three of us are communicating, and learning, about one another and what being in the same home really means.

 

One of the greatest areas that I am gaining understanding throughout this journey, is that the more often that I make up stories in my head, of what is going on in a situation, instead of asking and communicating, the more that I create misery for myself, and for others around me.  In this love, and in this home, I get to keep learning about others, about me, and how unique we all get to be in this life.  And, that the love that we bring to here will be what sustains and nurtures us.  

 

 

 

 

Valentine’s Day.

open heart

Valentine’s Day, the holiday for lovers, and others who love. For hearts, flowers, candy and the like. The specific day that we designate for romance, and to express our true feelings for others. I have always enjoyed Valentine’s Day, since I was a kid. Sitting at my desk, with my handmade mailbox, while other students dropped cards in. Then, getting to open it up, and open all of those tiny little envelopes, with characters and hearts on them. All parts of the holiday- hearts, flowers, candy, decorations, color- they all appeal to me.

However, this year, I sought also the deeper meaning for me in the holiday. I have celebrated it for many years, and this year, besides having love in my life, and cherishing that, it also represented something deeper, something more meaningful. It represents the true opening to love.

I have been open to varying degrees in my life, with different people. I have talked about my feelings, shared parts of myself, and expressed my deepest emotions at times. However, I have never truly opened up and been vulnerable to another human being. Ever. Not to family, to friends, or to a partner.

I didn’t realize just how closed I was until I made a commitment in the last six months to really open, to take a chance and let love unfold in its purest fashion. I could have just gone along as I have before, telling only what I thought the other person could handle; or hold back on how I feel about something and then resenting it down the road. But, I wanted it to be different. I was ready to have the whole thing, even knowing that it meant a deeper level of commitment on my part, and from my heart. It meant risk, and true vulnerability.

As I have been thinking on this for the last few days, I have also been watching my Christmas cactus get ready to bloom. It is fifteen years old, given to my daughter’s other mom when she was born, from my mom. I have been waiting, since the buds first appeared, to see it open, and one day, it finally did:

christmas cactus 2013

It fascinated me, as much as it delighted me, to see that bloom. I never knew that a bloom could open that much, actually opening back onto itself, it is so open. It reminds me of love, of the kind of love that I want to keep building, creating and committing to. In order to truly experience love, and the deepest connection possible, I need to open, fully, and be ready for greatness.

For I truly believe, that being vulnerable, and opening our full selves, that the beauty of life for all of us lies on the other side of that.

NEM idol!

Okay, now I don’t know if this is REALLY going to happen, but I think I am auditioning to be a speaker at the rally during the National Equality March on October 11, 2009. For those of you that don’t know, the National Equality March, and rally, is being held for the first time this year, in order to bring as many lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender persons and their families, friends and allies together, to advocate for full, equal, civil, marriage rights. There is no more time to be patient; now is the time to act.

As part of this historic event, which by the way is being held at the same time as the annual Coming Out Day, there will be speakers to address the thousands of persons that are anticipated as attending. And, as part of that energy, people have been invited to audition to be a speaker there, persons that have energy, passion, have a devotion to the LGBT community and its needs, and who want to speak out about it.

Well, let’s see: I have energy, no doubt. Passion, without questions. Devotion? Well, I have been working toward inclusion and understanding for years now, through training, and educating others, including most recently, the church that my family and I attend. I think I am qualified.

But, the question is: do I have the courage to do this? Sure, there could be thousands that try for this, so my chances of being chosen are slim. However, I am willing to try anyway, but what if I were chosen, what then???? Thinking about it makes my stomach feel funny, though I am not sure if that is butterflies of excitement or waves of nausea in anticipation.

What I need to do to try out for this is two things: First, draft a speech of that which I would like to say to get people energized and full of hope to go forward. Then, I have to film myself giving that speech, and send it off to the organizers. They will pick a group of finalists, whose videos will be uploaded onto Youtube and then voted on; whoever gets the most hits, wins!!

I will keep you all posted, and I will probably post my speech at some point, but the thing is, that feels more challenging to me than actually speaking in front of people……

How do I say in three minutes or less how this journey of identity and coming out has brought me to my self, like nothing else in my life? How speaking up and speaking out is now the only way that I can be? How marrying the love of my life would be one of the most anticipated moments for me? How valued and beloved I feel by the Universe, God, and so many persons I have met, who have felt rejected much of their lives?

There is so much in my heart and soul that needs to be said, that should be said, when it comes to equality, love, and justice. Because, that is what this is about, more than love, more than civil rights or pride, is justice, doing the right thing.

Fairness for all.

Wish me luck!!!!

Privilege is privilege, plain and simple

Privilege is a dangerous concept.  Dangerous in the lack of understanding about it, and dangerous in the fact that a person doesn’t need to exert that privilege. 

HUH????

There are certain aspects of personality and identity that creates possession of a certain privilege.  Based on the color of our skin, we may possess white/caucasian privilege.  Based on our gender, some people possess male privilege.  Based on our sexual orientation, there is heterosexual privilege.  Dependent on our age, there is youth privilege.  Privilege is based solely on our membership in a certain grouping or having a certain aspect of our identity.

Talking about privilege is always elicits a certain emotional response.  Sometimes, it is a positive response, of realization and awareness.  Sometimes, a negative response of defensiveness and hostility, due to feeling accused of exerting influence or privilege.  But, I will say once again, that whether we possess privilege and exert it or not, we possess it, which is the potential problem.

Privilege is a problem in that there is an a perception when a person is a member of a privileged group, that that entitles said person to have a status that is higher or defined as more important than others.   More valued than others.  Privilege is divisive rather than inclusive.

There is such a thing, as mentioned above, as heterosexual privilege.  Many members view others through the lens of heterosexuality being the norm, the way to be, the way that things should be.  So, portrayals of couples, families and individuals on television, in movies, or in magazines and stories are predominantly heterosexual in nature.  There are depictions that are homosexual in nature, but they are far less common, and seen therefore as the exception rather than the rule.   As a result, it becomes more presumed that it is more normal for heterosexuality to exist. 

The privilege comes through the issuing of rights of being a heterosexual person in this society.  As a couple, you can marry one another.  As an individual person, you can speak about your personal relationships, falling in love, and dating, in an open manner and it is encouraged and accepted.  As a married couple, you can file taxes together, be each other’s beneficiary in case of death; have all of the rights of a married couple. 

It is a joy to meet those with privilege, who are willing to acknowledge the fact that they possess such privilege, without defensiveness and hostility.  They open up their own minds to awareness, and therefore, can look at the world through a bit of a different lens; one that keeps that privilege in mind, and is more cognizant of their role in exerting that privilege, and to more actively advocate for those not in the privileged group.

All is not lost, however.  Awareness is the key.  Communication is the key.  Love is the key.  Looking at others through the eyes of love, compassion and understanding.  A willingness to make the changes where they can be made, for equality and compassion and mending the relationships that have been damaged between groups.  Equalizing things a bit.

I was so hopeful earlier this year, when Vermont overwhelming stated that civil unions have worked so well there, without the sky falling in, that full and equal marriage was the next logical step.  The legislature overwhelming approved it, it went through the judiciary committee very successfully, and was sure to be voted in.

Today, the governor of Vermont has vowed to veto it.

Why?  Who knows the real reason.  But, the bottom line is, we as LGBT persons, want the equal rights, want the opportunity to formally acknowledge our relationships so that we can ensure our participation in the equal privilege. 

Hope, hold onto the hope, always the hope. 

A Day Without Gays.

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Think about it. 

What would our world, our lives, our workplace look like without this aspect of diversity in it?

The gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender community is more organized than ever, asking LGBT persons, and allies, to call in “gay” to work today, and to offer their time as volunteers for an LGBT organization, or offer their time and talents in some other way.  If we cannot call off from work, which I did not, we can refrain from making purchases today, not spend our money.  Or, we can build bridges…….

Educate and reach out to those that may not have a full understanding of who we are as individuals, what equal marriage means to us, or how to have a better perception of who we really are.

We are mothers, daughters, workers, helpers, organizers, lovers, partners, parents, givers, receivers, church goers, contributers………….

We love, and so we are.

This day has made me think of this song from so many years ago, which seems to say it all to me.

Love really CAN build a bridge……..