I’ve been writing this post over a period of several days. I’m leaving it “rough” because it was really intended to be a note to me. It turned into a “real” post. It is barely edited and going to stay that way. Guys, I’m beat. Tired. Worn out. These are what has come out of my head. Sure, it’s a post about people that are LBGT. It’s also about a specific person and it’s really a post about us. How do we see people and how do we see ourselves. If we don’t find a reason to stop our fear of people that are different, we, collectively, are going to implode. We gotta find common ground, please.
It starts out with the notes I was working from. It seems disjointed after that because I didn’t do any editing or try to make it completely connected…
It drifts off at the end and that’s gonna have to be enough. Thanks for reading it.
more honey than vinegar…gently persuade…patience…time…less stress about people not seeing what I see…want to build a bunker with concertina wire and protect Z but, CAN NOT…Z more patient than me, gotta learn from her…hearts and minds…fight reaction to be a growling dog protecting The Muse…
These are the things The Muse wants me to do. She wants me to realize that people won’t change just because the Law did. She wants me to be patient and try to change “hearts and minds” with kindness and being non-confrontational.
It’s hard for me. I do take words that are directed at other people than her as being directed at her. My instinct is to protect her from those words and perceived hurts. My desire is to shelter. Given my way, I’d be a dog, growling at everyone I thought came close to not loving her.
I know that’s not fair to her. She can defend herself. She is more than strong enough and completely capable.
She’s protecting me. She’s trying to make me understand that I don’t need the stress. That the frustration is not good for me. She’s trying to change my “heart and mind”. See why she’s such a Treasure. This is why. I write for and about her and she’s my protector, too…A couple of stories…
During May and June, we had a bunch of storms and flooding. Here, D/FW, it was particularly bad. I’m used to it, at least as much as you can ever be to Tornado Warnings. She was constantly calling and praying. One night we were talking and lost the chat because a lightning strike close by dumped my internet. I wasn’t worried. Again, I’m kind of relaxed about the whole thing. It either hits and is a total loss or it’s a miss. SHE, on the other hand, was worried as she could be. I had to phone her up and let her know everything was fine, just a lost signal…See what I mean, protecting me…
‘Nother part of me is that I tend to stress and worry about random stuff. In an absence of knowledge, my mind races along ’till it’s close to twisting outta control. Not a good trait of mine. I let myself wind up. I tend to inflict it on her and my wife. She peels me off the ceiling. Lets me rant and then reminds me to calm down. That it’ll be ok. Helps me to realize my fears and worries are unfounded…
My Protector helps me to be a better husband and person by doing something that isn’t her job. She’s not my wife or girlfriend so, it can’t be part of what one of those would have “signed-up” for. *editorial, no girlfriend for me, ever. I’m married and faithful* She allows me to use her as a safety valve. To dump MY stress on her. To relate my nightmares to her so I can be a bit saner. She prays for me every day and, usually, is praying for stuff that I didn’t realize I needed ’till it happens. My world is safer because of Z…
It’s an odd role reversal. I mean, these words and posts have been to help her and make her world a better place. They’ve been to build her up. That’s in here and out there. They’ve been to tell her that, to me, she’s a Hero. I’m sure she doesn’t think she is. I do. Thing is, she makes my world a better place. She builds me up. She never lets me get away with saying that what I’ve done *see previous posts about being an ex meth addict* is not also worthy of praise, too. I don’t quite understand but, she treats me like a hero…
So…how do we go about this? How do we change hearts and minds? Bashing people over the head is not working. That is my instinct. To pick up Z, shove her into the spotlight, and shout “how can you fools not love her?” To use her as a bludgeon. She’s right. That is not the way that’s going to make a long-term change.
A “pride” parade didn’t change my mind. A screaming rights activist didn’t give me reason to see the error of my ways. What did was more like the mountains being turned into sand by the gradual actions of the waves. I didn’t have some epiphany. It was a process. It took some years. Lots of baby steps and realizations. Z came along towards the end. She wasn’t the first step but, the last. She was the end of a line of people. She says “educate”. Her life is that way. She teaches by being herself. I should know, it’s how she taught me…
We were friends before I knew she wasn’t straight. Kind of an “how’s that?” moment, right? No context for it. I’m married, wasn’t when we met but, engaged. I didn’t want or need a date, girlfriend, or anything else. She was just someone I talked to sometimes. We’re both “chatty”. Ugh. So, it never really had a reason to be a topic. I was talking to a person and not a potential anything else. When she finally did let me know or I figured it out by reading between the lines, it was a bit of a shock…for about a day. Then my I realized nothing had changed. Same person was still the same person. I mean, we had been praying for each other for a couple of years and I didn’t know. She might have thought I knew? Ask her.
That’s how she “educates”. She lives her life and at some point you realize she’s a person you want in yours. Easy enough, knowing her. Because there’s no context, you don’t realize she’s not straight. Not that she’s hiding it, just no reason to come up. I thought she was a fellow Ally. Then she tells you. She is blunt. At which point you realize nothing has changed in your relationship.
She’s far better at that than I am. I want to shout at people. I want to force them to realize that she’s great. She just goes about her business and lets them figure it on their own.
Here’s another odd thing about the way she educates. Even though she doesn’t like it, she’s far more forgiving of people that dislike her on principle than they are of her. She’ll defend their right to speak against her while she’s snarling mad at them for doing it. That and even though she’ll never admit it, the comments hurt. Still, she keeps defending their right to speak if not their words…
****Break to go to work and stuff. more later******
Here’s what I’m thinking. For me, it becomes a matter of perception. I mean, what do I see when I look at someone? Do I see the part I disagree with and ignore the rest, first? Or, do I do it the other way ’round? Do I see the parts I agree with and ignore the disagree? There are things that I do that Z doesn’t. She doesn’t beat me up with them, she ignores them. Same with me, there are things she does that I can not have in my life. No matter, I just stay away from those things. Make sense, sort of?
She’s human with the same courage and fear as any other human. She’s capable of the same soaring triumphs and crushing defeats. She’s a mother, daughter, cousin and friend. She can be as soft as a cloud and harsh as sandpaper. She’s just the same as every other Mortal. Her fears and frailties keep her up at night…just like mine…Her shoulders carry me along when I want to quit. Human, no more and no less…That’s what I see and am glad for it.
Everyone is the same way. No two people fit the same mold. There are always things we wish people would change.
While I’m writing this, here’s another thought. We, Americans, are constantly, me specifically, saying what we are against. Maybe we can think of what we are for. I’ve written all these words for Z. I’ve written to her, about her, and for her. My weakness is that I have to struggle against the “us against them” attitude. How do we include? How do we find common ground? How do we say, “you’re different but…so am I.”
I gotta learn that lesson. I gotta learn to not want to lash out. Me, I, need to be more gentle in the way I think and try to teach. Particularly, I gotta do that when my instinct is to protect. A Wise Woman keeps telling me that I can do more with honey than vinegar. She’s right.
I wish I didn’t write these. More correctly, I like writing good things about Z. What I mean is I wish I didn’t think there was a need for them. I wish that we could find some middle path. That we could agree to reduce our total stress. That we could figure out a modus vivendi and learn to live in peace. I’m idealistic, I know. I keep thinking that we have the ability to set aside our perceptions and see what is really true. I know I struggle against myself with that. It is hard. I had to overcome years of conditioning and prejudice. I do not even pretend otherwise.
I suppose I’m just getting tired. I don’t have the energy to spare on fights that aren’t mine. It could be said that this one isn’t except that it is Z. That, to me, as long as she lives and I do, I have picked her side to be for, not against. Not because she’s a Lesbian but, because of the rest of her. I’m writing for the whole of the person that she is. I wonder if that makes sense outside of my head? That my attempt to persuade to see the whole still includes the parts and says the whole is “greater than the sum”?
Please learn from what I had to learn to do. I removed the good because I wanted to see only what I disagreed with. I based my opinion, not on fact but on my perception. My views were wrong. My excuses, in the end, only let me hang on to anger and stress and changed nothing. She says she “educates” by living her life. Please learn from mine, too. My mistakes don’t have to be repeated.