I take on this word as part of my life mission because it has always been one of my “Life Topics”. When I say “Life Topic” I mean something that I have dealt with since childhood and that I bring to the table with wisdom and experience now as an adult. It is a topic that is constantly in my life and shows up for me when I need to learn something or to teach something. I will start with my story of it.
Self acceptance is one of the hardest things as a human I believe. We all have constant banter in our brains about feeling judged, not being good enough, not having enough, not feeling like we fit in anywhere. Those who do not have this well you’re darn lucky and maybe you will want to skip this blog entry. I am still learning daily how to accept myself and what I am doing in this world. I believe I learn through extreme manners and ways in life and so I choose pretty extreme things in life. I know the life of Moderation is considered the best but it is simply not the way I have chosen this lifetime. Maybe I will as I get older because the pain and struggle are becoming more difficult for me in the extreme realms.
Acceptance first showed up in my life when I was ostracized by the “cool people” in sixth grade. It’s your typical bully story where beautiful popular mean girl cheerleader feels threatened by new pretty athletic girl coming into her territory. My “Mean Girl” story lasted from sixth grade to ninth grade and it was a lonely road. I learned how to stay out of the way of the popular crowd and to just keep to myself. I basically focused on my school work and sports. I learned that the only way to accept a situation where there was so much hate and pain was to find something to focus on so that is what I did. Thank God I was a military brat and knew that we would move away from that state and area. I would tell myself nightly that we would be moving any day.
I feel like this was part of my process of acceptance. Finding the one thing I was really good at and then making that be known loudly worked well when I moved. My sophomore year of High School we moved to another state and I swore I would never endure that isolated pain from a group of people again. I moved to Colorado and I came ripping and roaring in with confidence that I was the best athlete they had ever seen. It was true actually I was pretty good but I was not about to give anyone a chance to knock me down again. Ironically, my high school years were still filled with a slight battle of guess who? the beautiful popular cheerleader who felt threatened by new pretty athletic girl. I actually took over her crown of “Homecoming Queen” so there was a lot of hate and animosity but I learned that was her and her little crowd’s shit not mine and I did not let it bother me. I stuck to my sports and school graduating with amazing grades and with all kinds of athletic honors. I also received offers for scholarships around the US.
I went back to being a nerdy quiet introvert when I was in college but that actually helped me because all I did was focus on school and again I graduated with honors. Where the next level of acceptance came for me was when I decided to leave my cozy comfy laid out life to explore and be a part of the Fetish world. Yea, this has been a whole new level of acceptance for me. I am learning how to accept myself and what I do in this world without judging it. I know because the Fetish world relates to sexual desires and pleasures that many people are scared of. It’s something that I have learned how to handle gently with people.
As many of you know I have come and gone from this world and tried to go back into teaching. I had one of the worst experiences of my life with judgement from staff members at a school I was teaching at in Hawaii. Narrow minded people and I do not mix well. I scare people with who I am, what I do and what I represent. I know this comes from uneducated people in the sexual realms of life. People are afraid of sex because it is powerful! People are afraid of expressing desires and experiencing sexual feelings they do not know or understand. I find it extremely sad that we judge things we do not understand and then shun them. My guess is that those people who judged me have many many sexually repressed desires and needs that they are afraid of and I represented their fear. Who knows but what I did learn is “Go where you are celebrated, not tolerated!”.
I now can share with others and for some reason I tend to attract others who need or are searching for acceptance. Yesterday I met a young man at the LaGuardia Airport. I was sitting in the corner drinking my coffee playing on my phone and a tall lanky young black kid approached me. He pointed to my tattoo and said, “That is an awesome spiral”. He asked me if he could sit down next to me and I said, “Of course!”. He wanted to know more about my tattoo and if it hurt and how he was thinking of getting some tattoos. I just sat and listened to him. I could tell he was anxious about something as his right knee bounced constantly and his hands were very jittery. He got up and said, “OK I am going to go eat my pizza. By the way I am really good at math.”
The way he talked I could tell he was very smart almost like “Rainman” smart, perhaps autistic. He said goodbye and then within five minutes he was back. He brought his box of pizza and I asked him, “Where are your bags?”. He pointed across the crowded rows of seats to another gate. I asked him if he needed to get his bags? He looked surprised and said, “Do you mind if I sit here next to you?”. I told him to get his bags and sit down next to me. He smiled.
He brought over his bags, a plastic blue bag from a store and his SpongeBob Square Pants backpack. I commented on his backpack because I love SpongeBob. He giggled and said, “Yeah that’s one of my favorites.” He reached his long fingers and skinny hand out to shake mine and said, “My name is Alex. I’m 19. It’s nice to meet you thank you for being nice. I feel really anxious. This is my first time flying to Texas and I am by myself.”. He gave me his story about why he was going to Texas and I just listened to him.
We sat together for awhile in silence after our initial conversation and out of the blue Alex said, “I’m trying to tell my mom I’m gay. If you were my mom what would you say to me?”. I am usually not too shocked by others but this kind of threw me off. I stayed calm and said, “Alex, what do you need?”. He asked me to role play with him so he could practice telling his mom, so I did. We talked about it together and he told me intimate details of his experiences and that he felt the need to tell his mom. He told me he was afraid of what she would say because in her church they say gay people are bad and evil. I just took a HUGE breath and listened. I find that most times just listening and letting people release their stuff helps.
After our discussion about being gay he told me he wanted to kill himself and that he had tried a couple times. I felt his pain. I asked him if he had ever talked to anyone about it and he said he hadn’t. I wrote down the national suicide number and gave it to him. I asked him if we could pray together and I held his hand and just said, “God give Alex strength and let him know that he is loved.” I could feel his entire being sink into a more relaxed state and all of a sudden he stopped shaking. I don’t think he knew what to do with it so he said, “Ok thanks I gotta go. Thanks”. He got up with his bags and walked to his gate.
I went back to staring down at my phone and then five minutes later I saw Alex’s Converse shoes appear on the floor in front of me. He said, “I don’t usually like people touching me but I was wondering if I could get a hug?” I stood up trying to hold back tears and gave him the biggest hug I could. I whispered in his ear, “Everything is going to be ok for you!”. He smiled and said, “Thank you and could I get your facebook or email or something?” I gave him my phone number and told him to text me when he got to Texas.
His text to me touched my heart he said, “Thank you for today. I really needed that. I am learning how to accept me. Thank you for the hug. Can I ask you a favor? Will you pray for me?” I said, “You are and always will be in my prayers Alex. If you ever need a hug I will send you one! Keep learning yourself and being gentle with YOU”.
I feel blessed to be able to share these kinds of moments with other human beings and honestly I believe it is part of my passion for life. I am learning the more material surface part of life but the spiritual and deep parts of life feed my soul! I am most on fire in life when I am sharing the depths of life with others. I ask for the strength to endure my own pain so that I can be a pathfinder and trailblazer for others. I hope I can do this in life and bring inspiration! I hope that I can continue to find acceptance of my path and be a role model for others.