Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Dear Nay Sayers

Dear Nay Sayers,

I see you there, on the news quite often. Standing there with your picket signs telling me that "Fags are going to hell" and "God created Adam and Eve, NOT Adam and Steve" I applaud you for your originality and your cute rhymes.

For so many years when I was growing up and even as an adult, I believed you. I believed that this feeling inside of me, these thoughts, this idea of who I was, was truly against God. How could it not? You've told me all the bible verses telling me so, you've told me the stories, you told me how AIDS was God's way of killing gay people off. You told me God hated gays, you told me that it was unnatural for people of the same sex to be together. You told me there was no room in heaven for homos, you told me that the choice of homosexuality was the work of Satan. How could so many people be wrong?

Large groups of people and organizations all fighting against gay marriage. Millions spent on "protecting the sanctity of marriage", millions of deaths in God's name trying to rid the world of these unnatural freaks, these sexual deviants, these perverts. How the homosexuals were recruiting and stealing our children and teaching them about gay sex. How homosexuals should not be left alone with children because their deviant minds would force them to do things to them, that the only safe place was church because there was no room in the house of the Lord for gay people.

You told me sex and marriage were about reproduction and since gay people can't reproduce they should have no rights to it. You told me about Sodom and Gomorrah, you told me about Leviticus, you have pounded that bible on my heart over and over and over again. You told me that gay people were different, they aren't like you and I, that these deviants were only out to destroy religion and families.

I listened to all this and it really sunk in, it was burned on my brain forever. What you taught me was that God was a loving God, unless you were a homo. You taught me that everyone was welcome to the house of God.......unless they are gay. You taught me to love the sinner and not the sin.

The sad part about your preaching of love for all.....except this list of people we made for God, is that it never really felt right. To listen to the preacher tell me to love thy neighbor, to treat others as I would want to be treated myself, all those good hearty messages I held so dear to my heart, it made your message feel like a contradiction to what was the root of the message. Sadly in my heart I knew I could never be close to religion, I could never be close to God, that God didn't really want me, because I knew in my heart that I was gay.

I spent years bargaining with God, begging God to take it away, to let me be straight, to let me be like everyone else. I wanted God to reach out to me, to love me the way he loved everybody else. I was tired of being on the wrong side of the looking glass. I tried, I tried to give up thoughts of other men, I tried dating women, I tried sleeping with women, I tried to be as butch and "manly" as I could. I hid my love of music, I hid anything in my life that might be interpreted as "gay". I hid myself because I knew if the truth were to come out, I'd be alone. I'd be separated from my God who I tried to believe loved everyone the same, but you kept telling me otherwise. How can I be wrong, I'm not a preacher!?!?

In the last several years I came to accept that I was indeed a homosexual, or a fag as you like to call me. I stopped listening to you pass your judgement on others and took it personal because it always was. You weren't telling me to love the sinner and not the sin, you were telling me I wasn't loved. You were telling me I wasn't worthy of God's love and I was to be cast out of the church because I was listening to the voice of Satan.

I used to sit in church and become so angry at all of you sitting around me. Listening to a sermon about loving one another and soon after talking about groups of people that weren't welcome with the Lord, a group of people that didn't fit in and had no place in the house of worship. You were talking about me. Me, one of the only kids that paid attention in Sunday School, one of the only kids to take church seriously, one of the only kids in my group to return to church after I was confirmed. You watched me grow in Christ, you watched me learn my place in the church, you were there to watch me every step of the way, and now because of something I am you would so willingly cast me aside? I couldn't take it anymore and I slowly withdrew from you. I stopped attending church, I stopping looking you in the eye, I stopped thinking you were family and eventually stopped going to church.

I let you drive me from my church home. I let you push me away from my God. I let you put so much stress into a loving relationship between me and Jesus. I let you make me think that I couldn't be loved.

Well here I am, 32 years old, here to tell you that finally my heart has been rattled. My brain has been released, my heart has been set free, and you should be scared.

I have met people that love me for who I am. I know there are churches out there that accept me for who I am, all of me, not just the bits and pieces that fit inside those narrow minded walls you are so fond of. There are people out there that accept me and reminded me that God's love is for everyone. I met people that think that even if it turns out that homosexuality is a sin, that God loves me anyway, God loves every bit of me, imperfect just like every other human on the planet. I've come to understand that you could never fully get it because you aren't gay. It's like trying to get a man to understand what being a woman is like and vise/versa, you just can't understand there is no choice, there is no decision, it's how God made me.

I've met gay couples that are more loving than those heterosexual couples you keep shoving in my face. I met gay people who seem to know more about Jesus' love than you could ever comprehend. I've met preachers who love unconditionally, I've met families who love their children gay or straight. I've met friends that reminded me that God's love is for me just as much as it is for you.

So you go ahead and make your signs, come up with your cute rhymes. Please continue to tell me how much God hates fags because you know what? I no longer listen. I no longer let you talk myself down, I no longer let you berate me with your hate slogans or your judgements. They are falling on deaf ears. I was reminded recently through acts of God that I am loved, that I AM worthy of Christ, and no matter who I love, no matter what you think, God is there for me and God loves me. Instead of replying to your hate, instead of fighting with you about who's right and who's wrong, I will pray. I will pray that you feel the love that I feel, I will pray that you will reach out to your neighbors who need help, I will pray that you will stop judging and see the good around you, and finally, I will pray for you to see God in the way I do, because you really can't understand what you're missing.

I'm behind, I know it.

All these posts from some of my favorite bloggers that have kept me company and have helped me so much spiritually lately and I realized I've been leaving my blog in the dust and not sharing nor letting people in.

It's a combination of time, moods and energy, but I'm getting there, I'll post a post that covers everything.....soon.


Today I'm having hard time controlling my emotions, I haven't been eating right the last couple of days and it's really affecting my mood, but I'm getting it straightened out. Right now I'm watching Rent performed live on Broadway (on DVD now obviously) and balling.

Music has a special hold on my heart and this musical holds so many emotions for me as it reminds me of so much from the time period I discovered it in and reminds me of what once was, who I was, and who I've become and it's a roller coaster, one I never know how to handle, but I still keep riding for the good and yes, even the bad.

And every time I'm left with this:

"Forget regret, or life is yours to miss. No other road, no other way. No day but today."
-Rent

Friday, December 11, 2009

changes

I've been on this crusade to get my house clean and presentable, all rooms at the same time and it's quite the challenge. I've been working on packing up non essential things and purging and organizing and it's been quite the challenge.

In my blood line I have my father's side who save EVERYTHING!!! You never know when you're going to need this 3" piece of string to I can't throw that bottle cap away because it was from the beer I shared with my cousin in the casino lounge on the day of his wedding to newspaper articles that my friends were mentioned in, nothing to do with me, but my friend's name was in the paper so I had to keep it.

Then there is my mother's side where nothing is sacred, it's just clutter. If it's more than 2 years old donate it or throw it away! You keep pictures and that's it, everything else is just messing me up and everything must go.

It's a constant battle between the two blood lines every time I move or clean or just try to organize things. I'm trying to think about where I would put it after I move, will I still think it's something worth decorating around when I eventually get my own house? I just drive myself crazy. While going through things and packing I came across a walk-man I got for my birthday when I was 13 or something and I was still holding on to it. I haven't used the thing in 15 years, but here I've moved it the last 5 times I've moved. I finally had enough and threw it away. There is a balance between holding onto memories and holding onto the past and I'm slowly starting to find it.

I'm still an unorganized mess, but it's slowly getting better, the problem with my house being messy is I've been putting off making these kinds of decisions and these internal battles, but there are days it becomes so clear and then the next day it's all clouded again. It's usually why on clear days I make sure I make the effort to take the things to the dumpster or donation site right away before I have a chance to change my mind.

Funny how I'm learning more about myself in this slow thought out move than in my usual quick pack it up, grab it and go moves. Some of these memories I don't want, somethings I've thrown away because they aren't happy memories, they are things that trigger my old self to start interacting with my new self and it's never a good sight, it's an internal battle that usually ends in tears because there is so much about my old self I don't like, things I've already worked through and things I've forgiven myself for and when I come across some of these items it's like a warp machine that takes me back to that time, to who I was, to the decisions I made, and the results of those decisions and I hate that.

2 1/2 rooms down and 3 1/2 more to go. I'll make it to the other side I know I will because I'm not that person anymore, I don't need this crap, I'm renewed and will be clutter free.......well almost. ;)

Friday, December 4, 2009

Life, it's so funny.

So I was supposed to be heading to the club tonight with some friends to dance it up all night, but I strained my back helping my brother yesterday and felt the last thing I was going to do was going to climb the 28 steps up to the club and mess up my back more by convulsing aka dancing lol. So I opted to stay home.

Instead I was planning on going to Free and Charro's and just relax for the evening. As luck would have it they were headed out of town for dinner and shopping and invited me along. I had such an awesome time. It's funny how I could have just as much fun with Free, Charro and beautiful Caryss as I do clubbing it up out and about with other friends. I just love it.

While clothes shopping for Caryss, the awesome 1 year old, my gay fashion side finally showed up as I was trying to help pick out her clothes. lol. I was trying to help dress her up like the diva she is. lol. But sadly we couldn't find just the right size in the faux patent leather coat with fur trim we found for her. But I will find it. lol. She's too cute to not have diva clothes. :)

Lets see what else.......

Yes, I went to the club on Tuesday and had a great time once again. Throughout the night I kept noticing someone looking at me, but I thought it was a coincidence so I didn't think much of it. I asked Jody if Justice was singing to me during the last set because it looked like she was staring directly at me and Jody asked if I was serious. Turns out Justice the drag queen MC had been eyeing me all night. I was quite taken back, I don't remember ever getting checked out. It felt good. Sadly while Justice is a rockin drag queen, I fear we have no future, but I don't mind her looking. ;)

Well anyway, that's all from me, I'm off to finish season 5 of the show I've been watching, It's taken me forever to get through these, but I love it, so it's been good.

Have a great night.

Thinking

I've been doing a lot of thinking lately. About me, about my personal life, my professional life, my friends, my family, love, lust, parties, past, present, God, etc... I think a lot, sometimes to a fault and I never really figure things out. I post these silly questions in my head and never really answer them. I come up with what might be, what could be, and every time I think I find an answer, it just feels like a lame excuse, or cop out, or as if I'm putting the blame on something else. It's not only the blame I put on other people or other things, I put the source of happiness in the hands of other people.

I told myself I'm becoming burdened with too many friends because I don't have enough time in a week to spend with them and I spend more time feeling guilty than one person should. Yes, it was seriously a thought that crossed my mind today, which actually led to, what is it about me that people find so interesting enough to want to spend so much time with me? Why am I so damn special that people get upset when I make plans with others? I somehow turned my wonderful awesome friendships I have with so many into a burden? What the ??????

I catch myself in this circle of thought so often it's becoming a habit. Looking back on many of my blog posts I can see where people think I spend half my life depressed. I'm so quiet there must be something troubling my mind is a phrase I have heard most of my life. People call with concern after what they see as a morbid or worrisome post on my blog. I love that people are worried, but at the same time I worry that maybe they don't know me well enough yet. I have been down some dark roads in my past, I have been out on the ledge figuratively and literately, and I would never, nor could never do anything to harm myself. I have learned much in my 32 years, I have learned I have real friends that are there if I need them, and I've learned in the darkest hour it's o.k. to bury my pride and extend a hand for help. So I think I've failed them, or that I'm not trusting enough or opening up enough to my friends that they don't know that.

I'm constantly telling myself, it's my fault, or that I couldn't be responsible for my own happiness, how could I be? It must be the result of someone else, or something else, that I couldn't ever be responsible for happiness. I don't know where it comes from, but it truly haunts me sometimes.

So during these times I'm alone and filling my head with all this craziness, I have been trying to make a small difference in those dark caverns of my mind, trying to remind myself that I have pushed myself and led myself and done things that I wish more people would. I find myself in bad situations, but I've also found my way out of them. I have chased after dreams and some I've accomplished, and some just don't turn out like I originally thought, but I don't have to look back and wonder what could have been. I've put myself out there for better or for worse just to see what would happen. I know I'm not the failure I keep trying to convince myself I am, but I don't know how to move past it.

It seems like every point in my life has never felt like enough. Like everything I do is not what I really wanted when it really was. The choices I've made in my life are mine to own and I need to own them finally. I've made some shitty decisions, and I've paid for them, some I don't think I've paid enough for, but somehow God lets me sleep at night because somehow he knows it was enough. I'm thankful he's more forgiving than myself when it comes to me.

I really do notice the good things in my life, and I do think sometimes I take them for granted. I take friendships for granted many times and I try not to. I try to let my friends know just how much I appreciate every minute I get to spend with them, and that I appreciate all they do for me and how much they mean to me, but sometimes I just can't find the words.

Sometimes for me it's not what you say, sometimes it's not what you do, sometimes, and by sometimes I mean most of the time, it's just that you are there. Sometimes mindlessly watching t.v. with me, sometimes by a 2 minute phone call saying hey what's up, sorry gotta go. Sometimes it's just knowing that even if we haven't spoken in a few weeks I can call or stop by or email and not worry that I haven't been around.

I worry too much.

I've decided I need to get out more. I need to find a way to make more time, I was thinking today I need to take a weekend every other month at least to pull myself out of this place, this town and just experience new things with people I love. I know so many people all around me that I don't get to visit. The store is no longer an excuse, currently I do however have the lack of a personal vehicle at my disposal, but I'm working on that.

I realize now that I allow the mentality of this town I've called home for most of my life to drag me down. I let these people doubt myself and doubt my decisions, I give them more power than I give myself to tell me what's right, what's wrong and what's stupid and what I find fulfilling. Why is it I give them so much power? Maybe it's age, maybe it's reaching my limit of B.S., but I am who I am. I like what I like. I do whatever it is I feel I need to do and I'm so tired of making apologies for that. Just because I'm different, just because I like other things, and just because one thing can not be my favorite thing for life doesn't mean anything, it's all a part of who I am.

I am who I am, and I'm not going to feel sorry about it anymore.

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

what a difference

It amazes me what a difference 4 years can make. 4 years ago I was drinking in celebration of a future I never could imagine and 4 years later I'm drinking for different reasons.

4 years ago I opened my business, and 4 years later I'm waiting impatiently to sell said business and move on with my new life.

I've learned so much about myself and have accepted so much about my true self in the last 4 years that if me from today went back and talked to me 4 years ago I'd probably punch myself in the face.

funny how long and short 4 years can feel.

So much good and so much bad, but I love who I am now so much more than who I was, I guess that's saying something huh?

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Dear Grandma

It is not necessary to visit me in my dreams to tell me you want me to go to Thanksgiving, you do this every year, but this year I'm fighting you.

That daughter of yours seems to love to make me feel like a failure and this year grandma, I don't need that because I already feel like a complete and utter failure.

I already believe that as a professional I've failed and those people that say I'm family (once a year) just thrive on helping me feel that even more. I don't need that this year and I'm sorry if you think I need to be there. I think of you often and if you were there I wouldn't fight it because you were the only reason I went for the last 10 years of your life.

I know they're family, but I have to draw a line this year. Perhaps next year if I'm in a better place I will reconsider your plea, but this year I have to say no. Those people do not treat me like family and will not miss me one bit, they haven't missed my siblings in the last 7 years, they will certainly not miss me this one year.

If you wish to spend thanksgiving with me, I'll be here at home cooking for dinner with people who do consider me family and treat me as such as well.

This has nothing to do with you, these were choices your daughter made and you alone can not unthaw her frozen bitter heart from the pain of years before. They were her choices and I refuse to take the brunt of her anger and sarcasm when I'm in my own fragile state. For just one day I'm going to try to not feel like a failure, like I haven't failed you, that I haven't failed my parents, and I haven't failed myself, just one day is all I want, just one stinking day.

I'm sorry and I love you, and I hope you understand when I'm not there this year, and I can only hope you won't punish me in my dreams for the next year.

Saturday, November 21, 2009

Brokeback Mountain

I had planned on watching a different movie, but this just came on Bravo and I'm not sure I can turn it off, but it will make me cry, it always does. But how can I turn the t.v. off from this?

http://static.reelmovienews.com/images/gallery/jake-gyllenhaal-photo_212x282.jpg

It's no wonder Eniss fell for the guy, just look at those eyes and his smile!!! I fall for him every time I see him!

We'll see what wins out tonight, my other movie or my love for Jake Gyllenhaal. lol.

I know I'm due for an update, and I'll get there.....sometime.

Saturday, November 14, 2009

discombobulation.

I'm not sure what's been happening to my mind recently, I find myself working on myself, but at the same time withdrawing from life which is funny because I've been just so busy running from one thing to another. The last week or so I feel like I've been floating out of my body just watching life happen and watching myself interact and attend things and work. I feel like I'm not taking a part in anything and I'm not sure how to explain it.

I just don't feel right in the head. I've been working so hard on my relationship with God, and yet I'm pulling away at the same time. I shrug at the idea of church and I become so sceptical when people start talking religion. I listen to a few, but for the most part I find the cynical side of me taking over and I keep fighting it.

What's happening to me? I'm not finding what I want out of the usual things I used to do to pass time, I'm not finding that much fun in things I used to love. I avoid 80% of my google reader because I feel like the those blogs no longer appeal to me, but I don't delete them because I feel like I might come back to them. I find some of the blogs just so superficial I can barely even read the titles.

I don't feel like I have anything to say to anyone, I feel like nothing that comes out of my mouth is worth it's weight and that no one will find any benefit in what's in my head. I feel like I could just lay in bed under the covers for months and not be bothered by it.

I hope I'm just tired and run down after this week, but it feels like more than that. I just really can't explain it right, so I feel like this blog post is pointless, but it is my blog, so I'll write whatever I want. ;)

Sunday, November 8, 2009

??????

I spend a lot of time wishing I could just slow down and spend some time alone relaxing and catching up on me time, or cleaning my house, or catching up on some t.v. show. But when I find myself with the time I've been longing for, I feel like I'm not exciting enough and wish I could get out more.

I don't even know what I want. I just need some time out of this body, or at least out of this mind of mine.

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Bad blogger, Bad bad bad.

So I'm sorry I've been gone for so long, I really am, but lets face it, most of you have been kept up to date on the goings on from my facebook page, so I don't feel real awful. lol.

First things first, my truck done blew up. It was just short of catching fire and just exploding. It is currently in pieces at my brothers house waiting for the trailer to take it to it's final resting place. Yes it could be cheaper to put a new engine in it, but the body is so rusted we're not sure it's strong enough to hold a new engine. It's bad, it's the first time in 16 years I've been without a vehicle of my own. I thank God that I have the family I have because for the first two weeks my parents made sure I got where I needed to go and things still got done, and now my uncle has loaned me his truck to get me through at least the winter. It's a company truck and he doesn't use it much during the winter so he's loaned it too me to get me through this time. I'm thankful everyday for their love and support.

I currently have two vehicles I'm looking at. One is a truck from Bethany's uncle I have to call on. I'm nervous because the truck is known to be small and I'm a big guy and it's a stick shift so I have to have room to hit the clutch which can be trouble in a small truck for a small guy, but I'm going to call and check it out anyway in case I'm wrong....which has happened once or twice. ;) The other is a car in Indianapolis that sounds good and is priced really well and if it's what is being said could be a car to get me through this time period and be a decent trade in when I'm ready. The problem is.....it's a car.

Other than that, for christmas I paid a professional photographer to take our family portrait. I've been thinking about this for years, but for one I never had the money, and to be honest I didn't want anyone to spend the money while my brother was in a shaky marriage. We have lots of family photos that we don't display now because they were with his wife #1 or wife #2 and it drives me crazy, so I figured this would be the year to do it and everyone agreed. My mother was just so excited I just know it was the perfect gift. One of the other reasons I was so for it this year is my father finally retired. I'm so happy he's retired because his job has been getting worse and worse as the last couple of years, and he has gone through so much being the oldest employee in the building and the highest paid because of his 35 years with them. I was so happy when the opportunity came for him to end his relationship with them, but it suddenly hit me that my time with my father is limited. I do realize that he could live another 30-40 years, but the reality of the situation is men on my father's side don't live to see past 75 and it scared the living crap out of me. So I took this opportunity to hire a photographer to create a fun day of multi location shoots and created such a wonderful day for us as a family I would have paid a lot more than they charged. It was a great day and now that day is locked in a photograph for the rest of my own life. It seems a bit morbid to think of that, but I'd rather realize how limited my time with my parents is now while I can let go of the little stuff and spend time with them, than think time is endless and miss opportunities to tell them I love them or appreciate everything they've done for me so far.

This past weekend I got to spend time in Cincinnati and time with J and C and had such a wonderful time. I got to attend a wedding of one of my dearest friends, I came out to people that care about me, and just overall happiness. I was also exposed to so many emotions when it came to being a part of a couple. It was weird how many good and bad situations I was exposed to this weekend and I just kind of took it all in and still have yet to analyze it. It helped me pin point emotions I pray are never part of a long term relationship of my own, and some I hope to gain. It's hard to explain without having to live through the weekend I did, but it also helped me to realize just how real relationships can be and how much work they can be, but also how they can be worth all the time and effort it requires. It was both eye opening and inspiring at the same time.

As far as the cost of help post from earlier, I have not yet had that conversation. I'm still working on how to bring it up and what in particular to say that will sink in because the more I look at the situation the more strange it becomes. I think it has a lot to do with different ways of being raised and very different life styles and I'm not sure how this will go. I'm trying to see both sides before I go into this because it could get interesting.

Tonight I attended the weekly party at Scott's house and like I figured I would be, I was just ready to get the heck out of there. In the last six month our lives have chaged so much. I still care for him as a close friend, but I also know when he's not listening to me and needs to learn more about himself and the people he holds close to him. To look from the outside in I can see how people are using him, but it's something he needs to learn himself because no matter how I try to get him to see things, he denies them and keeps going on. I am starting to accept my age and Scott seems to be fighting it more and more. To each their own. While I enjoy the eye candy of his weekly parties, because there is plenty of it, I am more content to leave early because of the smoky room, loud music and fighting, and just be home on a tuesday night catching up on things and watching a t.v. show or two and going to bed at a decent hour.

Now I do enjoy going out, having a good time, but my defenition of a good time is changing frequently. I more enjoyed coffee with B, J and C this weekend than spending two hours at Scott's party. After the last few months I'm o.k. with being 32, I really am because I so don't want to go back to those days. I'd rather grab a bunch of other people my age, go out to dance and have a good time and be home by midnight to check my email and go to bed. How weird for me to say that. lol.

It's that conversation my brother and I were having tonight over the loud party because after two visits to Scott's parties he's realized too that he doesn't fit in and would rather have a bon fire at his house with some quiet music than a loud obnoxious party with cops showing up. It's going to be just fine, me and this old age have gotten to know each other and we're happy together now. It was a rough start, but we're finding the kinks in our relationship and working them out through compromise. ;)

Well anyway, I guess it's time to head off to bed. :)

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

I never realized.

I know it's stupid, it's irrational and completely irrational......but I miss him.

I never really knew the impact he would have on me, I thought it was just another straight crush, and like the rest of them it would come and it would go and I'd move on.

But I still miss him. I don't know what it was about him exactly, and I don't know what brings on these moods. Could be the feeling of being alone, or could be longing for something I know I can't have. I haven't spoken to him in nearly a year, haven't seen him in that long either, but something about him, something inside of him maybe, I miss so much.

It's not crying myself to sleep at night kind of missing, it's not a "I can't live without him" missing, I just miss seeing him, I miss talking to him, and I miss listening to him.

I hope wherever he ended up, that he's happy and following his own dreams, because that's the only way I can accept his absence.

Saturday, October 24, 2009

The cost of help.

Everyone is raised differently. Different values, different ideas and different styles of friendship. This is something that no matter how old I get, I have a hard time grasping or understanding.

Today on my day off I got asked to help E cut up meat at his house because he was butchering a hog and making bratwurst. He said it would take 3-4 hours, we'd just cut it up, grind it and then he and my brother would stuff of the casings on Sunday. E has always helped me when I need help so I was more than happy to help him. Honestly I would have helped him even if he hadn't ever helped me.

So as we were working he changed the plan and we started doing all parts of the project, turning a 3-4 hour job into an all day and possibly all night affair. I had made plans with S long before this came about and S and I were heading out of town around 3:30, and E knew this. I stayed until 5 o'clock when S was calling really getting irritated because we were now over an hour behind schedule, so I told E I had to go. He said he understood and seemed cool with it since this was planned before me getting involved with helping him. I thought things were cool and I cleaned up and gathered my stuff. By this time 2 other people had shown up to help and I really wasn't doing much anyway, so I figured I was good to go.

As I'm heading out the door I apologized and said I wish I could stay and help longer, and E replied with "yeah, me too because you owe me big time" It struck a cord and I shut the door and walked out in disbelief that I just heard that.

Seriously? I owe him big time? I've heard a few comments from him before about friends that owe him money and he was collecting it from them by them doing things for him. Helping with his roof, helping with siding the garage, etc... I did borrow money from him because I was being threatened by two separate law offices to be sued over a matter of $800 from AFLAC for a story that's too long and boring filled with bitterness to repeat.

I never asked him for the money, I never begged him for anything. Everything he's ever done for me, he's done on his own accord. He's offered his help, and I accepted, never did I think I was entering into a contract to work off debt. I have made payments of cash to repay him, I thank him endlessly when he helps, I thought it was one friend helping another friend, but apparently there is a little record keeper keeping track of hours and money used to help me and figuring out what I have to do to repay the favor.

I don't understand friendship like that. I was raised that if you want to help someone you do it because you want to help, not because you expect anything in return but a simple thank you. If I had kept track of all the people I've helped over the years I should have never spent a day alone in this business. I've never held anything over anyone's head and I never expected anyone to help me because they owe me. I never once helped someone because I might need help in the future. When I help people it's because I genuinely want to help. Somehow along the way I'm the only one that thinks this way.

My father has made statements like "after all the help I've given so and so and they aren't here to help me now" and similar statements from my brother, and now this? People often think I'm just too proud to ask for help, it's not pride at all, it's fear of entering into this unspoken and unwritten contract of servitude. Where did all this come from?

I'm just at a loss of how to proceed with this. If I had the money I'd just pay him back in full, but it's going to take another month or so. I was going to skip a payment or so, so I could save up some money to buy a new vehicle, but now I'd rather get him paid off and done with before I move on. It makes me glad I haven't accepted all his help. The other day we spoke and he was offended because I didn't accept all of his help. How can we go from that conversation to this one? Was he offended because he couldn't hold it over my head? Did he have a project he needs help with in the future and is trying to secure the help to do it?

I'm pissed and I'm hurt that he thinks he needs to do something for me in order to ask me for help. Have I done something to create this situation? I just don't understand how this works. When have I repaid the favor so I don't feel like I HAVE to help if I have something else going on?

I talked about it with S today on our trip and he was flabergasted as well. Many of my friends are the same as me, we don't keep track of who helps who when and for how long or how big of a job it was. We help when we can and when the other person needs it. S has called me randomly to see if I could come over and help move a couch or t.v. or help take his brakes apart and I go and help and we have a good time and it was enough. I've called S to come help me with my car, or to help at the store for some random reason and he's come over and never asked for anything in return. The same goes for Free and me, we do what we can, when we can and don't expect anything in return except a simple thank you. I guess I was just naive in thinking that's what friendship was about, like treating one another like family.

Like I said I don't know how to move forward with this and get past it. Until I tell E how I feel about this, I don't think I'm ever going to be able to act normally around him.

Maybe I'm just wrong and it's how it's supposed to work. Maybe I'm the odd man out in this situation, I don't really know, but I don't think it's right to offer someone help and expect things in return. I'm always offering help, and always answer the call to help with whatever and whenever I can. Doing things because I feel obligated to do them does not make me feel good, it makes me resent whatever I'm doing and whoever I'm doing it for, and that's never a plesent situation.

Oh well, I've given this enough thought for tonight. I have to work at 7 am tomorrow and then we're getting our family pictures taken the rest of the afternoon, so I better get to bed on time tonight. I still have so much to blog about, but this just really hit a nerve with me tonight. Maybe now that it's out of my head mostly I can blog about the good things happening recently mixed in with the frustrating.

Sunday, October 18, 2009

I'm 32 and helpless.

I remember when I was 16 and learned how to drive and what a great feeling it was, and when I bought my first car it was even more awesome because it came with this sense of freedom. How I wish I could feel that again. In a matter of 10 minutes I went from free and independent to relying on people completely. I never realized how horrible this would feel, knowing I can't get anywhere without the help of others. I can't get to the store, I can't go visit friends, I can't run errands, nothing without feeling like a burden on others.

Sadly it's only been 24 hours and I'm already tired of this. I'm tired of already feeling sorry for myself, maybe I'll learn something about being forced to stay home, maybe I'll get somethings accomplished, who knows. God is trying to tell me something, maybe I've just been making myself so busy I couldn't hear him. Maybe this is a sign from Him. I don't know, but He's got my attention now.

If anything at least I have a vehicle locked in to get to Cincinnati. I can't wait, as if the trip and the people involved weren't enough to be excited about, now I'm even more excited because it gets me out of my house. lol.

Saturday, October 17, 2009

Things

So tonight I went with my brother and a friend of ours to a place called "Funny Bone" a little comedy club not far from here and saw Tom Foss. I had never heard of him, but he came highly recommended so I shelled out a few bucks to go laugh and have a good time. He.was.hilarious.



It was kind of awkward at one point listening to my brother and our friend E talk about the waitress helping the tables behind us talking about how they were wishing she was helping us. I on the other hand was enjoying our waiter, very cute, friendly and just down right yummy. I even covertly was flirting with him unbeknowest to my brother and E, or maybe they knew but thought I was being funny. lol. He was leaning down asking me what I wanted to drink and I told him I am what I drink and ordered a drink called the "Big & Easy" (sometimes I swear I crack myself up) he kind of paused and looked at me and giggled a little and said "Sounds good, be back in a bit" It was fun. :) Yes, I'm so bad. ;)

I had a great night though full of laughter and conversation.

Yesterday I had the pleasure of my Realtor bringing people by to look at my place. While the timing left something to be desired, the people seemed even more interested after viewing the place and now want to sit down with my financials and review somethings....which means they've been pre-approved or have a letter from the bank proving they are financially elligible to borrow this kind of money. So I'm hoping, or at least praying that this turns into something.

I can't believe I still have another 2 weeks before I go to Cincinnati for guy's wedding. It feels like it's forever and a day away!!! I haven't gotten away for quite awhile and I'm so ready. I'm so ready to see B again, to see J and C again, to see guy again and this time I even get to see some old friend's from Michigan! It should be quite an entertaining night!! Arg, can't I leave yet?

To make the trip even better I don't have to worry about the health of my truck on this trip. A friend of mine just bought an additional truck for his "fleet" of vehicles lol and told me he wanted me to drive that truck to Cinci. so he wouldn't have to worry about fixing my truck when I get back lol. So I get a nice truck to drive down there and don't have to worry too much about my safety. lol.

Well I think I've rambled on enough for tonight, it's way late and I've got a ton to do tomorrow. Maybe I'll get some time to talk about my horrible day the other day at work and the horrible emotional flashbacks I had. I'm too tired to get into it tonight.

Have a great day!!

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Transitions

I sit here after I left a party of the person people think I am and find myself in the facebook world of what once was as I head into the world of what I am now (if that makes ANY sense at all) and wonder, where will it end?

A friend of mine from college who has no idea about who I really am, well that's not really the case, he knows "who" I am, but doesn't know I'm gay found me on facebook. While this isn't really a problem or concern, he's one of the people that will be part of the merging worlds in a couple of weeks.

I often thought guy was crazy for being so worried about worlds colliding back a few years ago when Bethany I formed a friendship that was guided by God (being only slightly overdramatic) but I'm suddenly realizing for different reasons why it's so strange, weird and chaotic. While I love the idea of my friends from past and present meeting eachother I worry about the out come. Not because one is better than another, but that they won't mesh.

The world from before meeting the world of today is scary. I won't hide the truth from the people of the past as they enter the world of now, but it doesn't stop me from being a little worried about worlds colliding. I've always made friends from many different worlds, but when they meet each other it's not always plesant and I worry.

This probably makes no sense to anyone reading this, and it probably won't make sense to me tomorrow, but it's on my mind.

It's going to be intersting, and I honestly can't wait, but I worry. I'm more worried about the past meeting the present than I am the present meeting the past. It comes down to two different sides of my life meeting one another........and honestly what one another will think of the other.

Crazy I know, it's going to be fine and in the morning I'll be just as confused reading this as you are now, and we'll all get through this together. lol.






I'm sorry in advance for the randomness and craziness of this post. I've had a bit too much to drink tonight and I seem to have problems communicating my ideas.

Monday, October 12, 2009

Sunday nights

I really don't think I could ever watch my Sunday night shows with everyone and let them see me cry week after week, after week. Damn those writers of Brother's and Sister's, they know how to get to me week after week. lol.

I had planned on doing things after work, visiting my brother, some housework, etc... but by the time my dang photos uploaded onto facebook the night was nearly over so I haven't really moved. I caught up on my shows and watched the new ones and then went and dried the tears....arg.


I wish I had more to write, but just not feeling it today. It was such a good day, everything went well, everyone got along, I almost wish I had left the house to see just how good anything else could have gone lol. But here I am, sitting in front of the computer. I did however manage to put my flannel sheets on my bed and sadly put the electric blanket on my bed because the last few nights have just been too cold, and it was either the electric blanket or the furnace, and I chose the lesser of two evils. lol.

Last year I didn't put the electric blanket on the bed until after Thanksgiving. Damn the weather this year. lol.

Have a great day everyone!

Saturday, October 3, 2009

Past coming back to haunt me.

It's nothing really major, it's more or less thoughts and behaviors of the past haunting me and I'm not sure how to get past it. It seems every week God brings something to my attention and as the weeks go by it's becoming so overwhelming to realize how much is wrong inside of me!

So here's the story.

So today I was unfortunately placed on front register for supper rush. I don't like front register in this store. In the old store the counter was taller and hid more of my body and I felt less self conscious and enjoyed the customers. In the new store the counter is lower and smaller and I am closer to the customer and more exposed and it's unnerving for me. But I had had a fairly decent day up unto this point so I didn't have a melt down or anything lol. I had served a fairly large amount of people and it slowed down and people were coming up for refills. One particular handsome young man, about the age I would say about 25 or so came up for a refill. I'm rather shy I keep chit chat to small talk with all the customers and it was the same with him. He started to ask questions like "how's your night going" and things like that but said it like it wasn't just small talk to him and I instantly froze up.

My mind instantly switched to defense, I kept wondering why he would ask me that, were him and his friends trying to get more information to make fun of me from their booth? Were they laughing at me and making up things about me while eating dinner? Were they just trying to get me to say something stupid, or any number of other thoughts that were running through my mind at the time. I instantly knew it was ridiculous for me to be thinking this, I knew nothing about this guy, he could just be a geniunly nice person just asking about another human being, and a part of me thought, what if he was hitting on me? I knew it wasn't the situation, but I thought to myself, What if someone WAS hitting on me, or trying to get to know me and I pushed them away and got defensive just because I couldn't believe that anyone as cute as that would ever want to know me without knowing something about me or someone I knew before hand?

I began to think back to a party I attended at college. It was a "frat" party at the only frat house near campus. I was with some friends of mine having a really good time and this hot girl came up to me. She was the kind of woman most men drool over and try and try to get them to talk to them, you know the type, tiny, blonde, big rack. I really couldn't have cared any less about her looks, but it's setting up the story here. These parties were BYOB and I had a cooler of beer under the bench that Leigh Ann, Rianna and I were sitting on. So anyway this girl walks to me and asks where the beer was at. I looked at her and told her it was a bring your own kind of party. She looks at me and starts to twirl her hair and says, "Well do you know where me and my friend could find some beer?" I just looked at her and the defense went up because I knew if a pretty girl or boy was talking to me it was because the wanted something. I told her "So I suppose you think that since you think you're so hot and I'm over weight that I would be drooling and think that if I gave you beer you would be my friend or hang out with me and I would do whatever it took to keep you happy and you wouldn't have to run down to the store and buy yourself your own beer? Well I hate to disappoint you but you're barking up the wrong fat tree, this fat man is not nearly as desperate as I might seem" I turned back around and continued my conversation with my friends.

I look back now and think what an asshole thing to do, I knew she only wanted beer, it's not like I even wanted to talk to her, or want her attention. At the time I had a very nice man named Danny that was trying to get to me, what did I need with her? I think why didn't I just do the nice thing and share the damn beer? At the time I knew that if I did she would think that every overweight guy would bow to their every need just because she twirled her hair, or batted her eyes and I couldn't let that happen. I look back now and think I could have just offered her a beer and been nice about it and just not give her the kind of attention she wanted, but I could have still been a nice guy.

The defenses I have in my head are scarry at times. I wonder how many nice people I refused to talk to, or shoved away from my life just because they wanted to talk to me, or wanted to ask me a question. How many great experiences have I missed out on? How many great potential friends have I missed out on? How many opportunities have I missed out on? All because I thought I wasn't worth enough to talk to someone? It makes me really sad to think about. Could I have pushed away someone that loved me? Someone that wanted to love me? Someone that tried to love me? There are times in this life I feel like a horrible person, no matter how much love I try to share with my friends and family, why can't I share that love with strangers? What is it that makes me so uncomfortable? Could it really just be me?

At what point in my life did I decide I wasn't worth it? Was there one particular point in my life that these gaurds went up in my head? Or is it the years of torment and letting people tell me who I was? Letting people decide how I felt about myself? How does one go about lowering these defenses? Is it like a 48 hour stand down like potential nuclear wars? I'm just not sure what to do about it but work on it. I'm starting to think that the first thing I need to do, the core of all these issues is spend more time believing in myself and like Bethany keeps telling me, stop letting others let me decide how I feel about myself.

It sounds so easy when I type it, it sounds so easy when people speak it. The hard part is listening to it and following through with it.

They always say that a journey of a thousand miles begins with one step. Why do my feet feel like they are made of lead?


On a completely unrelated note, I'm suddenly hungry for Resee's cups. It's probably a good thing I ran out of them in the store otherwise I might horde them for myself. lol. Yeah I know Jake knows where I'm coming from. lol.

Thursday, September 24, 2009

This week in the life of........oh yeah, Me!

I type this from the comfort of my wonderful new big boy chair. :) You would think I would have learned a long time ago that I should buy furniture built for guys of bigger size like myself, but sadly it takes me so long to catch on to things. lol. Last week I had an incident with the last of my two office chairs I bought this year. I snapped the back of the one in the house a month or so ago and then last week I snapped one of the legs off of the other chair. They were built for people that weight much less than me, but they were cheap. It doesn't help I'm rather hard on furniture, but regardless it was the motivation I needed to order the office chair I'm sitting in currently. Steel framed, wider, taller and fantastic! I could jump around on this thing and not break it! I like things that make me feel small. :)

So anyway, it's been a dull week. My work schedule was crazy, my day off was spent making prettles, and all that dull stuff. It wasn't really exciting. Last Tuesday poor Norm was in incredible pain because of the viral infection in the nerves of his hand, an ongoing problem, and his meds weren't working so I didn't go over for our usual Tuesday evening fun, so I was kind of bummed most of the week. To be honest I didn't really do anything exciting last week except get my kitchen finally all cleaned up and organized and purged, so it's not all bad. lol.

Yesterday I did get to go to Ron and Norm's again which was great. I really do enjoy spending time with them. I don't know how but we always manage to find something different to talk about. I pried a little further into Norm's personal life, I'm still pieceing together so much about both of them. I didn't realize that Norm was 63! I was asking him about coming out to his parents and such and he went into the story about how he was nearly disowned and was required to cut all contact with all of his current friends because it was their fault. He said his first love was drafted to Vietnam and Norm's parents made him stop sending letters and cut all ties with him and monitored everything he did and everyone he communicated with. He was brought to tears telling me about how the man he loved died in Vietnam never understanding why he stopped getting letters from the one person he cared the most about.

We talked about the times and how things have changed, but I told him I just didn't see it that differently anymore and Norm tried to explain to me how much easier it is now adays. He has so many stories of the people he's met, the things he's done, the people he's done (lol), and the things he's seen. He's just a vault of information. During this conversation I was about to broach a subject that was going to give away my sexuality per say and I stopped to ask "You guys figured out by now that I'm gay right?" And Norm mustered up the most feminine voice he could find and said "bitch please" which made me burst out in laughter. Ron came out from the house and started laughing and said, huh, finally wanted to tell us huh? It was a good laugh.

We didn't really talk much about my situation, I just listened to their stories. Ron is much younger than Norm so the stories are a bit different, but it was just a great night like usual. The conversations were much easier because I stopped filtering myself and it made the two of them laugh even harder. I enjoy free conversations so much more than filtered. lol.

So it's done, it's been said and I feel better. There are still many hurdles in front of me, I talked about some of those with my friend LeighAnn last week during our 5 hour phone conversation. lol. She has a hard time understanding why I'm waiting to tell my parents, why I'm so worried, but she's never met them. While most of me believes it will be o.k. there is still another part of me quite worried about how it will change my relationship with them. All in good time, all in good time.

So I keep going along every day. I'm getting ready to start talking to new realtors soon, my contract is up in a couple of weeks and I'm ready to find someone who will sell this place and earn the money they will make off of it. I'm ready to move, I'm ready to stop living in Limbo and move on already. I will really miss some of the people around here, but I know it's going to be just fine, if not better. I've definately strengthened relationships while I've been here. :)

Well that's all from me today, better get to bed, have to work all day tomorrow!

Thursday, September 17, 2009

True confessions

Sometimes I get into a mood to share with my friends things that clog up my mind from time to time, things I just want to get off of my chest, and since only a select few of you actually read this blog I'm o.k. with releasing this information. lol.

1. Sometimes I hate things just because they are popular.
I fight so many things when they are popular, I'm not sure why, maybe it's a rebellion thing, or tying to go against the grain to be the mysterious cool guy. Whatever the reason, I find it irritating. lol. When "Friends" first aired and everyone flocked to it, I refused to watch it, I told everyone how stupid it was and I had better things to do with my time. I actually stuck to it because I really did have other things to do. But one fateful night my second year in college when I started living with Dan, he made me watch the show and I fell in love. I now can recite just about every line and recall every episode. I nearly missed one of the greatest shows on t.v. because of my bullheadedness.

2. I really don't hate country music.....and I don't hate all rap.
I've built my life around telling people I didn't like country. It's all people every listen to around here, they turn off my 80's hair bands and turn on the country station. For awhile I really didn't like it for that reason alone, but as I've grown in my old age, I can sing along with many country songs and will secretly listen to country in my truck when I'm driving. I still don't care for all that much rap and hip hop, but I do listen to some. Don't ask me why I keep telling people how much I hate country music, but I do.

3. The real reason I joined the cub scouts.
My mom wanted me to join the cub scouts in the fourth grade to make more male friends and learn some skills. I had no interest in joining, I didn't like the kids that I knew were joining and I was just uncomfortable in my skin. A few days before the deadline the den mother's son asked me if I was joining because he thought I'd have fun, and I instantly wanted to join. I didn't know why exactly back then, but after looking back, it's because he was so cute and I felt an attraction to him. I quit after 1 year because he was an ass and I didn't like the other guys in my den.

4. I love underwear.
I do have an obsession. If I could fit into a normal size I would have closets upon closets of underwear. I think underwear can make you feel sexy even if you know you don't look sexy in it. Not to mention there is something so vulnerable about being in your underwear, a sense of comfort and letting your guard down. You can be whoever you want under your clothes, you can go for comfort or you can be totally outrageous and no one ever has to know. You can really let yourself be whoever you want to be under your clothes, it's great.

5. I really don't hate my job.
I complain about my job but mostly because of the customers and drama the employees bring in with them. I like having a structured environment, knowing what I have to do, what has to get done, and feeling accomplished when it gets done. I like to complain about my job, but there is a reason I keep going back for the last 15 years. Every food job I've ever had I've tried to run like a fast food joint because after all they have had years of experience in trying and failing different ways to do things and they do it because it works.

6. I like to push blame onto others and use excuses.
This is one of the biggest issues God has been forcing me to work through over the last several years. I used to blame others for my shortfalls to avoid confrontation with whoever was in charge and make excuses to make me feel better for whatever screw up I made at that time. The more I noticed it the more I got tired of my own excuses, tired of listening to myself and started to take responsibility. It was way beyond my comfort zone and still find myself doing it from time to time, but I'm getting so much better.

7. I enjoy watching people sleep.
I know it sounds creepy right? I don't go out of my way to sneak anywhere to watch anyone sleep, I swear I don't. But if one of my friends falls asleep in a chair next to me, or beside me in the car or whatever I enjoy watching them sleep. There is something about people when they sleep that is so mesmerizing. We are never quite aware of the stress we carry in our face, a face that is asleep is totally different and I love seeing it on people. To watch the rhythmic breathing and stress free look on their face is calming to me. Some of my friends are so wired most of the time to see them at rest is like getting to know a whole other side of them. And now none of you will ever fall asleep around me. lol.

8. I have an obsession with checking out guys in the drive thru.
Yes, I cruise guys all day long at work in the drive thru. I notice their hair, what they are wearing, how they are wearing it and watch for something sexy. I notice what they have in their cars and wonder where they are going, who they spend time with, etc... I judge women on how their boyfriends/husbands are. lol. It's not good, it's probably not healthy, but it's just how I am. :)

9. If I won the lotto I would hire someone full time to scratch my back.
My sweet spot is my back, simple scratching, lightly sometimes hard scratching is all it takes to make me melt. My ex. used to lightly scratch my back in bed as I was falling asleep and it was amazing. I can never get my back scratched enough. Sick isn't it? lol.

10. Reality T.v.
I tell people about how I don't watch reality t.v. and I've never just gotten the appeal to it, but I was the orginal watcher. I started with Real World 1-4 and loved it! I grew apart from it because it became over the top and a social commentary from people I didn't really care to listen to. I got sucked into Joe Millionare because Evan had a body I liked to drool over, but I hated the show and swore off reality t.v. all together...........then came Bravo. I am hooked on nearly every Bravo reality t.v. show they have. All the housewives, Flipping Out, Top Chef, etc... I don't know what it is about train wrecks that is so appealing, but I watch hours and hours of it when it's on. lol. As I sit here typing this I've been watching Real Housewives of Atlanta since 4 o'clock while I've been running back and forth doing all my chores etc...

11. Telling people I don't cry.
I have always tried to put on at least a little macho face by telling people I don't cry, but the truth is, I cry quite a bit. Not ugly sobbing crying, but I get choked up and tear up quite a bit to various things. Sometimes it's music, mostly live, or a good marching band, movies, sometimes commercial, and even certain episodes of sitcoms. It's one of the reasons I've loved living alone because I could have those moments and not get picked on, when I'm with people I usually start cracking jokes to divert the energy away from tears into laughter. I'm horrible. lol.

12. I'm one of the most perverted people you'll probably ever meet.
It's true, I'm a big ole pervert and can turn nearly any conversation into something sexual. I don't know where I picked up on it, how it started or anything, but there are times I act like a middle schooler. In my older years I've been able to pull back on that quite a bit and keep my mouth shut and can usually push those thoughts to the back of my mind and carry on conversations with adults now, but sometimes, it appears.

13. I honestly have to consiously pull myself back from drinking.
There have been many many points in my life where I have found myself out of control and have to conciously make an effort to say no and to scale back. It takes tons of will power to prevent myself from losing control. I could probably get drunk every night and not think too much of it, it's in my blood. I have uncles that shake if they don't have at least a beer a day, and a father who had to quit drinking cold turkey if he wanted to be a part of our family. My father was never abusive, my father was never out of hand, he just drank, and drank a lot. He told my sister once he hardly remembers her child hood and when it was brought to his attention he quit immediately. He worries at times about his kids, but I think I've finally got it under control. I do like to go out, but if I'm going out, that's it for the week. I have had weeks where I'll have a glass of wine or a mixed drink or two throughout the week and I can do that now. I'm not the type of person anymore that if I drink one I have to drink 12, it's just not me. Sometimes when I'm out I drink one and I'm done, and other nights I drink more than that, but I don't like being drunk.


So why all the confessions? I think it's fun to share things with friends. Somethings don't come up in conversation, some are just fun and sometimes I just have to let it go.

So what's some crazy things from you guys?

Sunday, September 13, 2009

More random thoughts.....by me. :)

It's been a little while since I've updated, I'm having issues with time right now, learning how to manage it and all. lol. I'm also very uncomfortable in front of my home computer because of my office chair being broken in half, so I don't sit there as much as I should. Today though I had to prepare an order for the morning and now I'm watching 49 pounds of Ribeye sandwiches thaw out, so I decided to make use of my office computer, the faster and more comfortable of the two. lol.

I've been amazed over the last two weeks at the comments, emails, messages, phone calls, and hear say that I've been hearing and receiving. People have stopped me to tell me how much happier I look, how much more rested I look and what a completely different person I've become in the last three weeks. My own parents made the comment it was nice to have me back. While I could feel this change within me, I never realized I showed so much of it on the outside!?! I was talking to one of my coworkers today who talked to me about it that I really do feel different, I feel as if I found my old self again. My old self being the happy smiley guy that makes people laugh and is so friendly!

Since the changing of the store hours and such I'm amazed at how rested I feel, how much energy I find in myself and how easy some things are coming to me again. I really can see things differently, I hope differently, I wish differently, I interact differently. I enjoy this so much! I didn't really realize how fast I lost all that when I was running the store full time, I never fully understood everything it took out of me, until this last year. I noticed how snarky I was getting, how short I got with people at even a slight mention of this place, and I'm so glad it's gone......that mood that is, the store is still here. lol.

I have been feeling good, I have felt God working within me again, and I can see how well he's taking care of me during this transition. I can actually hear and fully listen to what God has been telling me now, I've been allowing him to dig deeper into my heart to help me heal all these wounds I've so bitterly buried in dirt and lemon juice. Why lemon juice? Because even though I buried them so deeply in the sand, they still burned and itched without me even knowing why. It's a tough analogy, but I'm sticking with it. ;)

I'm glad people can see the difference, because it is so hard for me to explain what changed, or how I feel so different. No one could ever really understand what the last three years has been like, no one can truly feel the effects the last 9 years has had on me. They watched it and seen the effects, but no one can every really know what it feels like. My mom asked me what it's like and I told her it's like I'm on vacation. I'm still working 49 hours a week on average, but it is really like a real vacation for me. I told her this is how I feel when I am in Cincinnati, and she finally understood so much of what I've been trying to explain to her.

This past week I got to talk to my pastor for a bit, I had some drawings shipped to my mom's office at the church and went to pick them up and while there he asked to see the drawings. He asked me a lot of questions, not all pertaining to the drawings, some just about life in general. He kept asking, Why Cincinnati? And to be honest, besides having some really great friends there, I don't have an answer. I have great friends all over the country, but on that drive home from one of my trips after Bethany and I talked about me possibly moving, I prayed, and I prayed, and I asked God, and I still can't explain it, but I feel like it's where I should be going next. I told my mom during lunch one day I don't know if that's where I'll stay forever, or if I'll be there for a few years, or what will happen there, I just know that's my next move.

Having a roommate again is something I never thought I would want, and it's going to be different, but I'm looking forward to it. Moving 3 hours away from my family is not something I ever thought I would do again, but it feels right. Somethings in life just can't be explained, I just know there is something there for me, something I've dreamt about without knowing what it is. I told my pastor that Napoleon felt like a pair of pants that were now two sizes too small, they were fine when I was smaller, but now that I've grown I just don't fit into them anymore.

Anyway, enough with the heavy stuff. :)

So a couple of weeks ago my friend Norm came into the store for his usual purchases which includes a box of his favorite wine. I told him I had to stop by and drop off my dad's computer to be fixed by his partner Norm and he was so excited I was actually coming over without a party invitation. lol. They have been after me to just stop by and visit with them, but with my old schedule it was just never a good time. Well now with Tuesday's being my only day at the store I have the night off from my full time job and it was going to work out great. I went over dropped off the computer and while I was standing in the dining room talking to Ron I hear Norm call out from the patio off the basement that the cocktails are being served. lol. I head on down there thinking I'd stay for a drink or two, have some great conversation and I'd be off for home. Well one led to two, and so on and so forth and the three of us were on the patio for at least 3 hours before we finally headed into the family room where Ron had set up a series of movies they wanted to show me. They were some really off the wall cult classics and we laughed hysterically until well into the morning. It was around 2:30am before I was ready to go, but being in no condition to drive I crashed on the couch.

We've since turned this into a regular Tuesday thing. Norm said they really enjoy my company and have such a good time, and I too have so much fun and enjoy their company. They are what I thought was 1 of 2 gay couples in Naptown, but they shared stories of years gone by of quite a different little town. To hear the names they were using and the places, and the things that have gone on, it's quite a different place than I imagined! They have lived quite interesting lives so far, and have been together for 29 years this year. They are not quite the couple I thought they were, but to see them interact is so amazing. To see the love they share gives me such hope for the future. To see 29 years of history and still see how they are today, I'm always just so amazed.

I have yet to actually tell them flat out that I'm gay, and I'm not sure why. I'm fairly certain that they know, and are probably just waiting for me to say, but I still haven't. I don't want to make a big deal about it, I'm going to just casually drop it into conversation sometime and see if they react at all. I'm not afraid to tell them, it just hasn't come up yet. I think a part of me is still a little paranoid about telling anyone in town with the way word travels around here, but I trust them more than I did before, our friendships have deepened I believe. I hope we continue our Tuesday night adventures into the world of bad movies and funny stories because they are something I've come to really look forward too.

If you've never caught a Jon Waters film, and I'm sure you have, you just haven't lived. lol. Jon Waters did the film Hairspray and a slew and plethora of other films, but the cult classics are the ones no one talks about, they really aren't for everyone as I think most of my friends would be horrified by some of them, but I found them utterly hilarious and contain lines that haunt you and come to you and some of the strangest times. lol. He used many of the same crew of actors and actresses in them so it just gets funnier. Divine Davenport is one of main reoccurring actors, she was a pretty big transvestite in the 70's and made tons of bad movies.

So anyway things are on the go here. Still trying to get the place sold, but still working in the mean time. While the constant kid drama at the other job gets to me some days I am able to leave it at work and come home and enjoy a life, and it's been great.

Sunday, August 30, 2009

update

It's been a whirlwind of a week and a half, full of new changes, new hours and a new life. It's taking so long to get used to, having free time, it's such a strange feeling.

The first day out of the store was amazing. I slept in a little, did a little cleaning, met up with my brother to fix some plumbing in one of the rentals and that led to eating lunch out. I then went for a quiet swim at my aunt's house, a time that was so quiet. No phones, no buzzers, no customers, just me on a raft soaking up some sun. It was great. Then I went to work, but it was o.k. lol.

My first Tuesday back in the store was a rough one. I was not expecting the emotional back lash to opening again and listening to the questions, and the comments, and the snide remarks, but I made it and felt good by the end of it, and I think I'm ready for this week.

The new schedule is one to get used to, it's different almost every day and allows extra time at different times. Working on my feet for 8 hours a day on concrete floors in bad shoes has been something to get used to, but I like it. I feel as if I have a purpose when I'm at work. I know what to do, I know how to do it, and I know how long it should take. I don't have the financial responsibility for the store or the employees within. It's such a weight off of my shoulders to know that if a piece of equipment breaks down that it's not my check book in the balance. I miss working for someone else. lol.

I've discovered that I work harder for someone else than I did for myself, I can leave my work at work and when I get home, it's me time. I got to clean most of this house, I still have a few rooms to do, but for the most part I'm starting to feel human again. It's not always easy to spend time with my friends who work first shift when I essentially work second, but it's working out. I have however missed spending time online. I feel like I'm disconnected from so many of you because I'm not around to chat or get constant updates about how everyone is doing, or how your days are going, I do miss that.

Other than that things are going well, I'm getting caught up on a lot of things in my personal life, packing, organizing, purging, and just cleaning. It feels good to have a clean house, it's been so long. It's nice to run to the store when you need to, run to the post office and live a normal life. I also got to go to lunch with my mother and we had a wonderful afternoon and some great conversation. I guess you could say I'm a momma's boy, and I'm o.k. with that.

There are some things in the works that could allow my dad to retire in the next month or so, so maybe I'll be a daddy's boy too. lol. It would mean a great deal for my dad to be able to get out of his job finally. It's been in the last two months I've noticed just how old my father has gotten and it's a scary insight into the future. I hope getting him to retire will allow him to slow down, not work the seven days a week in the factory and be able to relax and get to the things he's put off for so long.

I'm still worried about the financial aspect of this new life, but I won't really know about those for a few months yet until everything gets on a schedule and my full time checks start coming in. This will be an interesting month in that aspect, so I hope everything goes well.

Working during the day has had it's upbeat though. New people at work, new conversations, new interactions so it's been nice in that aspect. There's also the new guy! He's so cute, chiseled chin, sculpted body, and I just can't figure him out. He wears his pants lower, but has no other signs of being the normal thug normally found in this town. He quiet, he's polite, he gets some of my 80's references, so I can't figure him out. He doesn't really talk enough yet to share any information. He has a big belt buckle which I find incredibly sexy that says something with the word "phat" in it, but I can't make it out......not from a lack of trying lol. I find it intriguing to have a challenge at work, someone to get to know, but have to break into you know? Most new people spout off all sorts of information to show off or impress everyone, but not him, and I find it endearing.

Still no news on selling, we're trying to figure out a new place to advertise because the local papers haven't proven to be fruitful with leads, so we're still working on it. I just can't wait to be done and out of here. The one thing with working fast food is the conversations are limited, and it does get old after awhile.

Well anyway I forget where I was going with this so I'll end it before I ramble on even more. lol. When I find a clear thought I'll try to start again. ;)

Today

Today started as any ordinary day, forced myself out of bed, got ready for work and went to work.

Today was a day I felt self concious, I don't know what brought it on. I was in a comfort zone, a place that doesn't normally trigger this feeling.

Today was the day I constantly pulled at my shirt because I felt my bulges were too defined by the tight shirt I'm forced to wear.

Today was the day I wouldn't pick things up off the floor because of how I think I look when I bend over in these pants.

Today was the day my feet reminded me how much weight I carry around on them all day long.

Today was a day I felt customers staring at me thinking "Poor guy in his thirties and this is the best he can do"

Today was a day that I felt customers thinking "Hey buddy, just because you work here doesn't mean you have to eat everything, looks like you could put the chicken down"

Today was a day that you looked at me and I couldn't speak because I didn't think I was worthy.

Today was a day that you joked with me, and I thought you were making fun of me.

Today was a day you laughed about something out of hearing range and I thought you were laughing at me.

Today was a day I felt inept to do a simple task.

Today was a day I felt useless and unworthy of my skin, all 500 pounds of it.

Today was a day I felt lazy because I took a nap after work.

Today was a day I felt like a hog because I had a can of soda.

Today was a day I felt everyone staring at me judging every choice at the grocery store.

Today was a day I felt you staring at me wondering how fat could someone get.

Today was a day I felt as if you wondered how much fabric it took to make enough clothes to cover me.

Today was a day I felt as if I haven't done anything with this life.

Today was a day I felt as if you were watching me feeling sorry for me, the lonely guy alone at Chipoltle.

Today was a day I felt you judging me for eating the entire burrito and snacking on the chips.

Today was a day I could feel you staring into my soul, knowing the thoughts I'm having and laughing because you know you would never lower your standards enough.

Today was a day I felt you watching me drive by thinking you were in college so you didn't end up driving the beat up truck you see before you.

Today was a day I felt you watching me and laughing at how I walk.

Today was a day I felt like the worlds largest man still able to walk.

Today was a day I felt you judging my clothes.

Today was a day I felt every choice I've made in the past was wrong.

Today was a day I felt as if my choices for the future may be wrong and that's why the future is not happening.

Today was a day I felt so distant from everyone else on the planet.

Today started out as any ordinary day, today was a day that wasn't really bad. Today was a day that nothing out of the ordinary happened, but today was the day I couldn't escape my head.

Tomorrow though, is a new day.

Monday, August 24, 2009

Wow

A full time job not involving the internet and no internet access on the computer at said job.

How do I fit in my online time in this life? How do you do it Jake? My reader is exploding, and I'm behind on blogging!

I feel so disconnected.


But strangely I'm finding myself again, just wish I could be out of here to finish finding myself. I miss me. :)


I miss you too.



All of you.



I promise to update everyone sometime this week.



At least I'll try my hardest. lol.

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Help me Ronda, Help Help me Ronda

Help me Ronda yeah......get him out of my heart. LOL.

The fair is in town and so sparks my very bad fascination with the carnies that come in every day. They are really nice people, not the typical carnie folk you run into that are rude and obnoxious, this company stands by their carnies and if they find out they are out of line and misrepresenting their company, they are out.

They don't always look the cleanest, or talk with the most proper English, and sometimes they are missing a tooth or two........but they are just so cute. I can't help it. I really can't. I can't explain it, I can't justify it.......it's just the way it is.

Random thoughts.

Well fair week is upon me, the fair grounds is filled with the hustle and bustle of people setting up and preparing for the fair. Tomorrow the campers start rolling in and before I know it Friday will be here. This is the time of year I get very nervous, it's a lot of money going out in speculation on products I'm not sure I'll sell. The rowdy and obnoxious teenagers trying to pull one over on me will start coming in and so begins everyone's constant bitching about not being able to park in my lot, or not getting to use my bathroom, or not getting to use my phone, or being able to harass people from the front of my store. It's usually more stress than anything for me. It's 15 hours a day being stuck in this place with no break. Last year I nearly went bankrupt because of the fair, but everyone just assumes I make enough off of one week to pay my bills for a year. That is so wrong. On a good year I profit enough to catch my bills up and usually pay myself since I take a week off of my second job. Last year I was left with tons of inventory I didn't get rid of and everyone bitched I ran out of other stuff. I was hoping I wouldn't even be here for this fair because of that, but alass, here I am.

So anyway, this is the week, I've ordered conservatively and hoping for the best. Come next Friday morning change is being instituted. I'm not really announcing it to the general public until next thursday, but I'm changing the store hours to just Tuesdays from 11-7. I can no longer afford to pay out the kind of money it takes to keep this place open for people. It's within my best interest to go back to work full time and maintain the store on a part time basis. I have to do this for me and my checkbook. I have been borrowing to keep the doors open for some time and I just can't afford to keep doing it, the money is out, the money is gone and there is none left. This town has showed me what it's made of and flipped me the bird the final time.

So anway with that news out of the way I spent some time with Jonny today. Some may remember Johnny from a blog a couple years that I wrote that can be found here. Johnny has had some trouble over the last six months. He was having a hard time swallowing food and went to the doctor, long story short is they discovered it was a tumor. They treated him to shrink the tumor so they could remove it, but when they recently went to remove it they discovered at least 12 more growing all over the place and stitched him back up and the surgeon gave him 2 months to live. I spoke with him today and the doctor in Toledo reviewed the information and told him it could be 3 months up to 18 months depending on treatment etc...

I've been battling with what to say to him if I saw him and today he came in to update me and I was at a loss. I tried not to pitty him or anything like that because I don't think he would care for that. I let him talk, and talk he did. He's going tomorrow to talk to the doctor's about his options but he's planning on fighting. He said he's been praying a lot and he knows he's too young to go and he's not done here yet. He said when they opened him up the tumor moved away from his esophagus and down to his liver, which he knows is bad news, but he said now he can eat without discomfort so he can regain his strength. I encouraged him and made sure he had people that were checking up on him from time to time and going with him to his appointments. He seems pretty determined.

He also told me how scared he is, and I just don't know how to react to that. I told him it's o.k. to be scared. He also told me how angry he was, how he spoke to God in a matter unfitting to a christian and he would only get angrier. I told him it was o.k. to be angry with God as long as he didn't stop talking to God, to not give up hope and not lose faith, and he agreed. I tried to tell him the things that were on my mind, but I couldn't get to them all in conversation. I can't imagine being in his position, but he said it certainly changes your perspective on things. We had a good chat today and he's taking it better than I would have expected. Pray for him when you get a chance.

One thing we talked about were regrets. It's something that goes through my mind quite often actually because people always ask me..."Do you regret ever buying this place?" and some days I want to answer yes, somedays I wish I had never moved back and taken this on, but I see the good that came out of it as well. I do no regret doing this, I do not regret anything in my past. The things I've done in the past as well as the present are decisions I make based on who I am. Sometimes they aren't the smartest decisions, sometimes I do things that make me realize that a certain part of me is unneccessary. Not that it shouldn't be a part of who I am, but there are reasons that part of me is not the decision maker. lol. Jonny said he seems that since before he retired it seemed that every decision he's made has been the wrong one, that he keeps making bad decisions and getting nowhere. I asked him if he thought he'd still be who he was without those decisions. I know I wouldn't be who I am today without the bad decisions I've made in the past.

We can only learn from bad decisions. Some have a longer sting of aftermath than others, but each time we make a decision it's based on us, there was something about that decision that made us feel safe, or made us feel alive, or something along those lines. There was something just so enticing about that decision that we made it. If it's a bad one, we just have to learn from it and move on. My advice to Johnny was simple, all we can do is keep making decisions, right or wrong, when we fall we have to get back up because the next decision could be the right one. Johnny awakens the old Pete, the old Pete that believed there was good in everything, that there was good in everyone. He awakens a part of me that I've missed, the part that could look through a bad situation and keep a steady eye on the light at the end. I've missed him so.

I've been having a very hard time lately, I've been cranky and moody and down right mean at times lately and I've noticed, but do little to stop it, until now. I want to rediscover myself, have faith in people again, to be able to let bigons be bigons and keep moving forward. I need to press through this bad time right now and keep my eye on the future. I'm going to work harder at that, to not be the constantly bitching person I have been as of late, because as Johnny told me today............"Life's too short for that shit."

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Truth Syrum

So last night we went out for S's birthday. It was a group of 10 of us in three vehicles. I was in the car with S and J. We drank before we went to gay night at the club so we wouldn't spend as much money there. The party was going well, everyone having a good time, I apparently was having too good of time. I vaguely remember the DD's loading us all in the cars and taking off. One thing about alcohol in my system is that it makes me talk.....a lot. Now in the crowd I was with I'm pretty sure I took the liberty of sharing more information than I think either of them expected about things in the past and things in my mind.

At one point I leaned over to J and told her that in case she hadn't figured it out yet that I was a big ole 'mo. She said she figured it out awhile back, and I guess that only started the conversation. More and more details of the conversations in the car are coming back to me, and I know there were some things that I don't think S was expecting to hear, but he's been very kind about it.....so far. lol. I now have no secrets from S or J apparently. J learned an awful lot about me last night, but she'll be cool with it. We stopped off at a bar about half way to the club so S could get a birthday drink from a friend of his that was bartending. I remember hugging and talking and possibly groping our friend Matt the drag queen we support, I'm not sure about the events exactly, but I'm pretty sure I made an ass out of myself.

Once at the club I, being very outgoing and talkative at this point, struck up a nice conversation with the cute guy checking ID's and working the door. I wish I could remember all of the conversation, I'm not sure how big of an ass I sounded like. Once in the club I had a beer and danced the night away. Anyone who knows me, knows I'm not much of a dancer, but that didn't seem to stop me. I danced with everyone, I did some grinding with an old manager I used to work with, made some very awkward attempts at flirting with guys that obviously wanted nothing to do with me, and had what I can only imagine was a terribly awkward conversation with a guy by the bathrooms. I do remember walking in to use the restroom and seeing a group of guys by the sink having a conversation about their piercings.....um yeah, it was different.

The night quickly went down hill when I went outside with the old manager to have a smoke and flirt terribly with him, I'm sure his wife would have appreciated that. But anyway he started entertaining the crowd outside and ended up breaking a $6 piece of glass that was holding up a flyer of some sort on the wall, he freaked and left. The bouncer comes out as our small group of three was heading towards the car and yelled that we had to stay and tell the cops what we saw, and while we were rounding the corner to get away from the guy I heard him give the cops the description of S's shirt. I knew it was going to be bad from then on out. We got the car, got rid of S's shirt and our DD got us out of there fairly quickly.

We were to rendevous with the others at Taco Bell, because that's what you do after a night at the bars in that college town. We waited, and waited, and waited. Well come to find out in a cell phone conversation later, three of them were arrested. The details are still a bit sketchy because I wasn't around and didn't even know where they parked so I have to wait and talk to them to see what exactly happened. The two eighteen year olds weren't held because they had no charges, they were stone sobber and had nothing to do with what had transpired. The 17 year old (who apparently had a fake ID) got alcohol in the club somehow and was arrested for underage. He's going to be fine, and I have yet to figure out how they got tied into the drama.

As we're sitting in the Taco Bell parking lot going back and forth on phone calls trying to piece it together I just put my head in my hands and decided I need to retire Party Boy. He's had his fun, I have no idea how it got so out of control so fast for me. Up until the end I did have a really great time, but it's not exactly the image of myself I wish to leave with people. I think my days of having that much to drink are over. I'm not stupid and thinking I'll give up drinking all together, but it's time I take it back to a more social level. It was a good feeling to let go and have that much fun and let my gaurd down and be more outgoing, but I need to find a way to do that with less alcohol.

It was not my finest hour, I'll admit it. But I learned from it and will be working harder to be more like that, but without a crutch.

Friday, July 31, 2009

Free



No I'm not giving anything away for free, sorry to disappoint you lol. After reading B's 30 people who have influenced her life this past month I started to think about my own list, no real number of people, just everyone that has impacted my life in some way. I don't want to steal her idea because some of them I couldn't explain. I started looking through my blog here and realize just how much I've talked about S and it makes me sad that I've missed out on so many other people. I talk about S so much because he lives 6 houses down and I see him every day, he's my single partner in crime in a world filled with couples and families. We went to see F and C last weekend when we were bored because I hadn't seen them in awhile and F(ree) out of a joke (I hope) stated he had disconnected himself from me to make my moving away easier on him. I think he was joking, but it really hit home and made me realize, he really has gotten the short end of our friendship.

He told me once that I didn't appreciate his friendship and I used to argue with him about that, but the more I think about it the more I think he's probably right, I've always taken for granted that he would be around and he would be my friend and in the last few years I've become really laxed about putting forth an effort on my end, and I felt horrible. So I've been thinking about writing this post about Free to tell the world just how much he really does mean to me, and how he's one of the most influential people in my life.

Free and I met shortly after starting at the factory. I had just quit the only job I knew at Wendy's and went to factory work for more money and to work third shift while I went to school. My first night was tough, I was not used to third shift and I was surrounded by a whole new group of people, I didn't know anyone there and I'm terribly awkward in these situations. I found the job terribly boring with a lot of time to do nothing. I was on the other side of the weld room from a majority of the people in a section with two robots with me and a girl working. The girl was a bit odd and not very talkative so I pretty much let my mind run wild with all sorts of thoughts about life during the night to keep me awake. I was very quiet.

At lunch time I went to the break room and found everyone sitting together in groups and staring at me, so I turned around and went out to my car to smoke through lunch. After lunch I was working away on my robot and suddenly a forklift came flying into the area and the driver stared at me and caught me yawning for like the 12000th time that night. He loaded up a box and came back around and stopped and stared at me some more. I looked at him and smiled and said hello. He looked back at me and said "You and I are going to be friends" and then drove off. The lady next to me laughed and wished me luck because not too many people liked him. I was a little scared but when he came back around again he got off the tow motor and told me I yawn too much and struck up a conversation with me. This.guy.was.hilarious.

We hit it off and the next night we talked some more and at lunch time he took me to the break room and introduced me to a few people and had a good time. It was instant friendship, he was so fun and grew up so differently than me that it gave him such a different view point on everything I found it so refreshing. I discovered in a very short time that people didn't like him because he was so honest. He doesn't like to hold back, he's the type of guy that if a girl is crying at her machine and says "I don't know why I can't keep a man", he'll be more than happy to stop what he's doing and tell her why she couldn't keep her man.

The first time we hung out after work I believe he took me to the old church he owned out in the middle of BFE since I was going to school for architecture he wanted to show me the place because he wanted to turn it into a cool 2 story home eventually. It had been so long since I had made a new friend it was such a great feeling. We talked about everything, the past, the future, the present, religion, just about anything anyone could imagine. The one thing we didn't focus on was work, which was such a nice change of pace. Every other friend I had met up to that point was only ever focused on work, but many of the people I met there didn't want to talk about work outside of work and tried their best to stay away from it.

Free was the first person to ask me if I was gay. I guess some people at work were arguing about it and he was the only one that asked me. I remember that day, we were driving through gull woods on the way out to his property for some unkown reason. No one had ever asked me before and at this time I suspected it, I knew in my heart I was, but I wasn't ready to accept it. I remember hesitating and then laughed it off asking where that came from. He told me someone asked him at work and he told them it didn't matter one way or the other, and reassured me several times that he wouldn't care either way, as long as I was happy. I told him no, but he knew better because Free can see through me most of the time.

Free was the one that taught me it's o.k. to spend money on a good meal, that's o.k. to spend a little extra for a fun night out because life is so short. He taught me it's o.k. to slow down once in awhile because otherwise you get too serious about everything. He taught me it was o.k. to let loose, that work was not life, it's just what you have to do to pay the bills and be able to have fun. He taught me the world of inside jokes and it was o.k. if we were the only two laughing causing a scene at work because to us it was hilarious! Free taught me how to be myself and not worry so much about what other people thought and it was o.k. to think something that society didn't agree with. He taught me it was o.k. to cut people from my life who were draining or bad for me. Most importantly he taught me the value of true friendship. Through thick and thin, good and bad, health and sickness he was always there. He rode with me to a doctors appointment in Toledo after work because he was afraid my car would break down in the ice or that I would fall asleep. He was there to talk me through getting passed by on a promotion I had my heart set on. He was there when I dropped out of college, and he was the first face I saw when I got to work the night I was ready to off myself.

Free introduced me to some of the craziest people I ever met, and also introduced me to some of the kindest people I've ever known. He knew all sorts of people from all sorts of back grounds and in all sorts of different circumstances.

He took me to many parties with his old friends and I remember one in particular. It was my first real exposure to being around drugs. Some of his friends were passing pot around and they offered it to me and I said no, they didn't comment about or anything, they just passed it on to the next person. I talked to him later about how it was nice to not have to deal with any kind of pressure from his friends, he told me that he mentioned to them that if any of them gave me a hard time about anything he's whop thier as*es. He was/is my protector. I never felt unsafe with Free, I always knew he had my back. I often told him I hoped I would never be in a position to have to fight because I would be very bad at it and not be able to back him up in the same way, but I would do my best. A situation still hasn't come about, but I would take a bullet for him, and I'm not sure I've ever done enough for him to know that.

When I decided to go back to college and that it involved moving to Michigan, he was pretty upset. He knew it's what I wanted and needed to do and never tried to stop me. I was sad because I thought he and I would get a great bachelor pad together and have so much more time to hang out, and I know that was in his mind as well, but I had bigger things to do. He went with me to take my placement tests, he spent 5 hours on his own that day, he took my car and scoped out places to shop and hang out and showed them too me when I was done. He really got into it, trying to push me and help me along and talked me through a lot of indecisions at that time.

Shortly after I moved we lost touch. I'm not sure why, what happened or who happened, but life just happened and before I knew it, his number wasn't his number anymore, he didn't live in the same place, and I just couldn't find him anymore. I was so afraid that I had lost him forever, my life just wasn't the same without him. A couple of years had passed and I was at my grandmother's house visiting while the family got ready for my aunt's estate sale across the street. When I was leaving I was driving down the road and out of the corner of my eye saw a guy mowing the yard when it dawned on me, IT WAS FREE!!

I nearly lost control of my car as I whipped my car around in the parking lot across from his house, I nearly forgot to throw it in park as I was trying to get out of my car as quick as possible to get over there. He looked a little confused about the car in the parking lot until I got out and recognized me. I was so happy I even gave him a great big hug. I was there for at least an hour as we reaquainted ourselves. I was so happy that I had finally found him again. The next several years our visits were hit and miss, life kept him running and school kept me running. We still talked once in awhile when I was home.

After graduation I moved into an apartment in Michigan and stayed on at my job but had more freedom and was able to talk to him more. We met up several times when I was home and he even came up to see me! It was a very costly trip when he hit the ice and spun off the road, but that's another story. We began solidifying our friendship again. Each time was like time did not exist, that each visit was right after the other. One weekend at his place I told him I was moving home to buy a store. He was less than thrilled and it took me by surprise, but he couldn't understand how after all this time I would want to come back. He supported me, but had his reservations, with all good reason aparently.

Free was the first person I came out too. I posted about it here, but am too lazy to find the post. He's the same awesome person he's always been. I haven't been able to give him as much time as I've wanted because of this store, but he's living his life. He's got a beautiful baby girl now and but I don't get to see him nearly as much as I'd like, and I can take the blame for most of it. My life has gotten in the way which makes it so hard to think about leaving, without getting that time to spend with him.

The hardest part of leaving will be leaving him again. I've left my family before but we get closer. I've left S before and we stay friends, I'm just so afraid that the distance will once again seperate Free and I, but I'm bound and determined to not let it happen this time. I hope he will bring his family down to visit because there is so much to do there, so much I'd love to show them, and spending time with him is alway so much fun and enriches my life. I never take the time to tell him any of this, and I have a hard time showing him. I guess I always take for granted that people know how much they mean to me, but I know it's not always the case. I wanted to post this entry to be able to tell him and be able to tell others why he's such an awesome person and give him the credit he's due.

Thanks Free.