So this is something I have been meaning to do for a long, long time. I have wanted to say so much but at the same time, I have been gripped by utter silence. It felt as if my vocal cords just froze when I tried to come up with the words to say.
The concept is relatively simple, consisting of only 3 words, and yet the message it carries means so much more to so many people out there. The question I ask myself is what can I say that hasn’t been said already? What can I say to those who, unfortunately, are not here to read this anymore? That’s a tough pill to swallow and one that, for whatever reason, has kept me silent for far too long.
This also involves looking back into my own life at some dark passages and times when I wanted to just crawl under my bed with a flash light and Star Wars book and pretend that nothing else existed. Those are times I hate. I don’t think about them if I can help it but they made me the man who is here, typing this today and so at the same time, I am thankful.
Yes, I have felt the exact same fear that many, many youth and even adults in our country and around the world have felt and currently feel. I have been there oh so many times and what I can say at the end of the day looking back is that I am thankful. Not thankful because I was bullied but thankful that I am here to tell someone else to stay strong.
So many people in this world fear what they do not understand. That fear, while a powerful and vicious weapon when turned against others, is so acidic that it eats away at who they are too. Like caged animals lashing out solely out of fear, bullies lash out at others to cover insecurities within themselves. They strike raw nerves because they cause the most pain in others. They do it because somewhere deep down, they are so very, very afraid.
Striking at a person’s sexuality is easy to do. It is something that nobody can change and as a gay individual in our society today, we see the beginnings of change yet still feel the archaic rust of old opinions scraping at our exposed skin. I long for the day when being gay is seen in the same light as eye color; noticed, accepted, and attributed as a part of an individual but not a label as well as something that is seen beyond what goes on behind the bedroom door. We are not there yet but the wondrous thing about living in the time we live in today is that YOU are the future. You are our future. You are our hope. You are the people who will usher in that change. No matter what anybody says to you, calls you, or does to you, you should be here to spread your wings when the dust settles and soar to heights others only dream of.
Often, when witnessing the best parts of humanity, we also have to bear witness to some of the worst parts of humanity. The hard thing is being able to see them both when faced with such adversity. This is so hard to even comprehend when a fist is battering down on you and the word “faggot” or “dike” is making your ears bleed. I know. I was there. It is so hard to see the beauty in the world when you are stuck under a bed and riddled with fear but trust me, it is out there. There are people who love you who don’t even know you. I love you. Lesbian, Gay, Straight, Bi, Trans, or however you identify your sexuality, I love you. What you are does not matter but the capacity to love does. It is that capacity that one day will cause you to love your worst enemies and I envy you for that. When that moment happens, you will become someone so beautiful, so miraculous, and so brilliantly human that you will become a part of the very change we all wish would move faster. You should – no – you NEED to be here for that.
You don’t have to forgive now and you don’t have to forgive ever. What you need to do is survive. You need to open your eyes, look out from under your bed, look to the skies, read a blog, do whatever you have to do to realize that there are people out there who love you. There are more of us than there are of them and we know what you are going through.
Hard to believe that all of that is embodied in three simple words but that is something so beautiful about the English language. I don’t believe it is a coincidence that there are two separate phrases coming to mind and they are phrases that many, many people need to hear.
I love you.
It gets better.
All my love,