Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Discouragement Continues

Talked with mom this evening....and although she feels some better.....she is still very discouraged....and depressed and not feeling well.

It absolutely kills me to hear her be so out of it.


Mother is horribly discouraged.

The chemotherapy is making her very, very ill. Her hair is falling out. She's terribly frail.

AND, she's noticing that people are treating her differently. "There's pity in their eyes," she said last night. She doesn't like that and it makes her a bit edgy.

She even has questioned why it is that she needs to go through the trauma of chemo.

I tried to be encouraging.

"You're passed the half-way point, Mom," I said. "Hang in there just a little longer."

I also told her to promise me that she would call me anytime day or night when she got discouraged. I reminded her that I am here for her....and that if she needs me to run home...I will literally drop everything and come home.

She won't hear of it.

BUT, she did promise to call me.

I call her several times every day to see how she is doing. I tell her each time we talk how much I love her and how much she means to me. I also ask if there is anything she needs for me to do.....

She says that just hearing my voice is enough.

Gosh I hate this.

Why does this have to happen NOW?

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Does A Paradigm Need To Shift?

I had dinner with a very special man last night.

He and I have been friends since the middle of June and we enjoy each other's company. Although he and I have been friends for only a few months, there is a connection with him that puts me at ease and I feel that I can share basically anything with him and he will listen and offer some words of wisdom.

Last night, he and I scheduled some time for dinner and to walk around a mall. The majority of the time, he and I talked and talked about everything. I shared with him about my love life (or lack thereof) secret longings.

He, too opened up and shared some of his life story

He has always been gay and has been involved in a number of relationships. Currently he is single.

I asked him what he thought did gay relationships in more than anything else. He told me that he thought it was the lack of honest and sincere communication.

I asked him about the whole monogamy issue. He is for open relationships.

This is where the discussion got really interesting. I said that I felt that monogamy makes a relationship "special" and that if it is an open relationship, one runs the risk of causing it to be diluted and to make it lose its specialness.

He then said that his view of relationships was different. He believss that one can have an open relationship and then have a primary relationship where you "come home" to it....and draw your strength from it. "Too many gay men in relationships live in the future....rather than enjoying the moment now!" he said. "If a couple lives in the here and now and love and live....the future will take care of itself. It's not necessarily good to drop the heterosexual model onto a gay relationship."

So, I found myself just sitting there....dumbfounded.

I'd never heard things discussed like this before.

So, it has now made me wonder if I need to rethink what I have desired for so long: a gay male who was only interested in me and that we could live our lives together exclusively and grow old together.

Is this truly realistic in gay relationships though?

I sighed after our discussion and said, "Gee these gay relationships are so hard."

He smiled, and agreed.

I drove him home and he hugged and kissed me goodnight.

Monday, October 27, 2008

Monday Morning -- The Wee Hours

I have had quite a weekend so far. Saturday I was in the depths of despair. I was blue about my mother.....I missed my kids......I looked around my house and could see all the ghosts of my past life parading from room to room. I turned down several social engagements so I could just stay by myself and brood.

There is no other way to describe my feelings on that cold, gloomy, dark, drizzly fall day here in the Washington DC metro.

I actually sat down and went over in my mind all the bad things that have happened...or that were continuing to happen in my life. It wasn't pretty and I'm not proud to be sharing it.

But there you have it.

There were some other personal upheavals that I had to deal with on Wednesday evening late....but I won't go into all that. Suffice it to say that I have put everything back into perspective...and with the assistance of my constant companion, Davy, the wonder dog (cocker spaniel), I will survive another day.

This morning I went to church for the first time in eons. I felt really bad about having been gone....but between the work in my office...and going to West Virginia.....and having some private time, well, there just wasn't enough hours in the day. This morning I made it just in time for the beginning of the morning service. I got to see a number of my friends....and they all hugged me....and let me know that they were thinking of me.....and that they had been praying for my mom.

Their constant mantra was "Keep the faith...there is always hope."

This is what I am trying to do.


I've thought a lot about the post I made last week where I talked about Lovey....and how alone I felt in dealing with my mom and my dad....and how at times I felt overwhelmed.

One of you wrote and asked if having Lovey back in her previous capacity would really make things better....

Honestly...the answer to that is no -- a resounding NO!

But after having read all the other comments, I think that one of the things that I am longing for more than anything right now is having someone who can be there for me during all the difficult days and months ahead. I would love to have someone who was available to "take care of me."

Aw...I'm not saying I'm codependent or anything as severe as that. I do wish I had a strong shoulder to lean on....or to sob into....or to have some very strong arms to entwine around me during those frightening moments of uncertainty. Someone that I can bounce ideas off of..... Someone to say, "I'm here. You're doing fine."

This would mean all the world to me.

But for whatever seems that I am alone. Even though I've had a few near misses lately.....of people expressing interest.....but then for whatever reason not following seems that I am to face all these things alone.

I don't like it.

But what am I gonna do?

God knows.....why all this is happening.....and why....I am alone.

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

I'm Back!

Sorry to have been gone so long. I was in West Virginia checking on my parents. Then, I was caught having to work some erratic hours because of some pressing matters at the office and tonight, I returned from a 3-day conference in Baltimore with my office, only to return home and have to work on some office projects while trying to settle down from my trip!

Mom appears to be doing okay...considering all that she has had to endure thus far. She has grown quite frail.....and now her hair is beginning to fall out. She is keeping a positive spin on things and has gotten herself some snazzy wigs to make her keep her foxy appearance. She keeps her fingernails polished and she has decided to continue eating like a horse. She's not throwing up or anything like that. However she does feel a bit nauseated at times, at which point she takes her anti-nausea meds....and lies down.

Dad continues to be her number one care giver and he loves taking good care of her.

I just worry about them.

It bothers me because I'm not closer in proximity to where they live....or that I'm not able to swoop in on them more frequently.

At times I feel like this all is just way too much for me to handle alone. But what choices do I have?

I'm an only child.

My wife ditched me.

She doesn't even call my parents to check on them. (And she wonders why they don't want her to come to join us on holidays? This is another dramatic story that I will save for another time.)

I feel just so alone.

And it's all so very scary.

Wednesday, October 08, 2008

Dinner With Friends

Last night I had an impromptu dinner with two very dear friends.

Following a very long and stressful day, I needed to be around someone that cared about me....and where I could let down my hair.

So, I jumped at the chance to go and have fun for a few hours.

One of them, who hadn't seen me in a while, kept telling me how wonderful I looked. He detected a change about me. I kidded him and said, "See what a weekend with your EX wife can do for you!"

We all laughed.

But,I sat down when I got home and started thinking about what he had said..... I suppose I look different because I feel different about me. I'm relaxed. I'm not trying to prove anything to anyone. I'm just enjoying my life....and trying to figure out how to spend more time with my parents, my children and my friends because I appreciate each second.

My one friend kept me in stitches as he was recounting for my other friend about how much fun we had at the beach this past summer. Gosh, it was so good to laugh and think about those wonderful memories.

I pray that I have many more such memories to make.

Who knows? Next year I may be able to make some more wonderful memories with someone very special.

Monday, October 06, 2008

More on Ray Boltz

As a result of my posting yesterday of the Ray Boltz concert in Indiana from 3 weeks ago, I have had a substantial increase in the number of visits to this site. I also did a check to see where they were coming from...and as I did that search, I came across some really vile postings on other sites by so-called Christians.

Don't get me wrong. I am all for people being able to believe what they want. After all, this is the cornerstone of our government. But, it really does bother me to see these pious "saints" discussing a topic that obviously they have no first hand knowledge about....assuming that just because they are straight, God made EVERYBODY that way....then saying that people like Ray Boltz.....and (HORRORS) me.....are "doomed"....and that we are consumed by lust.....that we are deceived.....and one person on their wonderful site even went so far that Boltz now has mental problems. One lady even said he has hooked up with that "church that Troy Perry, the Pentecostal Snake Handler started."

God help me please!

Why must everyone get all vitriolic? And be so fearful?

So, I got all bent out of shape....and decided to write the attached note to the Christians out there. Bear with me....I don't mean to get all "preachy".

An Open Letter To My Fellow Christians:

Look, there is nothing wrong with people like us following our natural programming to love someone who has likeminded programming.

There is NO agenda!

My loving a man shouldn't affect YOUR straight marriage. (Unless of course, your husband is another person like me who has tried to conform to societal norms. And he reaches the point of deciding to accept himself.)

Being homosexual is no more about lust than being heterosexual is.

There are extremes in the homosexual community just as much as there are extremes in the heterosexual community.

We are NOT out to recruit others!

We are NOT child molesters!

We are every day people from all walks of life. We work. We pay our taxes. We live our lives.

Why shouldn't we be permitted to have a partner in our lives that we can love, honor and cherish?

I'm Christian...just like you. I believe in Jesus and that He died on the cross for my sins. But where we differ is that while the Bible may be inspired by God, it does not mean that people who wrote the submissions that appear therein went into trances, then used automatic writing as God dictated it thousands of years ago, for me here today.

If you're gonna attack Ray Boltz about this issue....and accuse him of being mentally unbalanced.....or crucify him because of his divorce.....then give those hefty gosepl performers equal time because of their out of control eating.......or some of those singers' who have been married more than once......or other's problems with consumption of alcohol....or the straight preachers who have "girlfriends" and wives.

I, for one, am tired of being told about how bad I am....just because in my mid-life, I was forced to face my orientation...head-on. I am now divorced. All this flies in the face of what you've taught me all my life..... And after all the change ministries....ex-ministries....prayer....fasting......and demons being cast out of me.....God did not change me. I have accepted that.

And you know what? I finally feel that I am the man that God now wants me to be. He's confirmed that I'm on the path He has set before me.

So, in the end, your screaming and preaching at me isn't going to change me and all my screaming and preaching at you isn't going to change you. Let's just realize this isn't going away. It isn't going to change. But let's learn to live with each other and tolerate each other. Then, in the end, let's see what awaits us in the hereafter.

God is certainly big enough to decide....fairly....and justly.

And I can certainly live with that knowledge.

Can you?

Sometimes I Wonder....

Sometimes I wonder if I am too much of a nice guy.

Oh, I can be a real bear when I want to. I can get temper can get the best of me.... If I'm not feeling well, that can cause me to be especially irritable.

But for the most part, I try to be easy going, kind, loving and gentle.

I guess that's why I wonder if I am too nice sometimes.

For example, this weekend Lovey wanted to film her serving communion at one of her churches, and her sermon, to be able to submit with her ordination paperwork that is due in mid-December. (Oddly enough on our 27th Wedding Anniversary to be precise.) So, she asked if I could help her.

I agreed to this back in the summer...and did it on the first Sunday in September. She was not happy with her performance.

She then asked if I would come up the first weekend in October.

I agreed to that too.

What's wrong with me?

I should know better.

Being with her like that is emotionally draining. It's like picking at an old sore. It never heals.

So, today I return to the office., having spent a busy weekend in the Shenandoah Valley of Virginia and awakening this morning a bit drained emotionally. AND..haunted by the might-have-beens. I was reminded once again of all the plans I had made. You see, I turned 50 this year, and I had planned to retire early and to move to where she was in ministry....get a job....and just live my life as a support to her and her ministry. But now, because of the divorce, I'm gonna have to work another 20 years at least to recoup what the settlement cost me in my retirement.

I reminded her of this plan during one of our more serious conversations. (She said she had forgotten.)

The insidious part of being gay is the fact that you try so hard to do everything you know to play by society's norms..... What's the result?


From the start.

Colossally so.

Then I am forever haunted by it.

I was surfing the web the other day and came across a Ray Boltz concert from about 3 weeks ago that was video taped by Jesus MCC in Indiana. It was the first concert he gave since coming out...and it has really spoken volumes to a spiritual way. He does a song entitled "I TRIED" that sums up my feelings and the thoughts I have dealt with. I can't wait for his new album...hopefully that will be on it. Give it a listen. The link to the entire concert is below...but listen for I TRIED. All his music is fantastic....even the old songs like THANK YOU......and THE ANCHOR HOLDS. Enjoy!

Ray Boltz in Concert from Jesus MCC on Vimeo.

Thursday, October 02, 2008

Another Busy Day

I like busy days at the office. It makes the time go by quickly and I feel like I have accomplished stuff.

I absolutely despite the days where there is nothing for me to do. It seems like the day will never pass....and I feel guilty when I'm not doing something worthwhile.

But this was not one of those days. I have practically worked nonstop all day long.

On the personal front, it's a bit interesting in that I have not heard a peep from the celebrity that I wrote of two postings ago. No simple "Hi" or "How are things going?"

My brief notes of "How are things?" are ignored.

So I try not to let it bother me. But on some levels it does.

Oh well.


On another front, that gospel singer who came out, Ray Boltz, has apparently shook up things in the rabidly evangelical Christian Community. I did a google search on his name...and got a sermon entitled, "Is Ray Boltz Going to Hell?"

I find this sermon so stupid. The unidentified preacher (and if I had preached such a message, I would not want people to know I had preached such a sermon myself.) opened with a comment (I paraphrase), "I don't know Ray Boltz, and really don't care about his life, one way or the other..." Well, sir, if that was the case, then why did you spend 45 minutes talking about him to your church congregation?

Folks are so good at demonizing us gay folks. They harp on the "sin of homosexuality"....and eliminate us from their ranks whenever possible. But did anyone ever preach about the "sin of gluttony" or title sermons, "Is Vestal Goodman Going to Hell?" just because she was fat?

Aw c'mon everyone.

Let's allow God to be the righteous judge that he is. He will judge fairly.

To Get You Caught Up on My Mom

Mother has now had three chemo treatments.

She went to the beauty parlor on Saturday and decided to get all pretty.... She had her hair cut and styled. She said, "If my hair is gonna fall out, it's gonna hit the floor in style!"

On Monday, she got up.....painted her finger nails (they're long and pretty) bright red.....she put on her OIL OF OLAY....(She said, "I don't want to get all shriveled up like Tammy Faye."), put on her diamond ear rings and went for her first trip. They gave her two bags of chemo drugs, followed by anti-nauseating meds. On her way home, she stopped by Wendy's and ate a large chili.

On Tuesday, she got up, felt foxy. Got her self all prettied up again.....went...and had her two bags of chemo. Asked the technician, "How does the medicene going into my right hand know to go to the top of my left lung to get the cancer. After all, there's nobody there giving directions!" The technicians were amazed that: a) she was not sick or anything from the chemo and b) that she has such a wonderful sense of humor! She went home that day and did laundry.

On Wednesday, she got up, felt foxy. Got herself all prettied up again....went and had her two bags of chemo. Every place was taken and she was surrounded by bald, sick people that "looked like they were ready to check out," she said. Their color was bad and just seemed so miserable she said. So there she was....with her red nail polish, her tastefully appointed lipstick.....and she sat and relaxed. She got two more bags of chemo. When done, she got up...and they stopped by a restaurant where she got herself a pepsi and had a hot dog with onions! Just then her physical therapist came for her final appointment. Mom walked her all over the house and even went up the steps to her second level....and did so with one foot right after the other...not one step at a time! Keep in mind that she had her hip replaced just six weeks ago and she is 74 years old! The therapist could not get over how well and fast she has recovered and that she is tolerating the chemo so well.

She called to tell me all about her adventures ....and the fact that she is so thankful at feeling so well. She's giving all the credit to answered prayer!

Thanks for your loving support, warm thoughts and heartfelt prayers on her behalf...and for keeping me encouraged!

Wednesday, October 01, 2008

We Gay Men Are Sooooooooooo Fickle

Okay...I'm a 50 year old guy. Some twinks out there hear this and immediately would describe me as an "old troll".

Honestly I understand that.

After all, I'm not a gym bunny....I don't have a bubble butt......I don't have porn star looks....

But, in all honesty, I seem to be able to hold my own. There have been many handsome men who have floated through my life.....and my bed.

However, there is a certain caliber of flaky gay guy out there that I have never been quite able to understand.

Let me explain.

I enjoy people. I love to get to know people and learn from them. I also enjoy seeing the world through their eyes...and I strive to be a friend. This is because I know how difficult it is for some people to reach out....because I was there.

I have made a number of friends online....and they talk about the importance of friendship. But what amuses me most is that if there is no kind of attraction...some of them prefer the term chemistry....then there will be no friendship. NONE. NADA.

I have said to some guys, "Oh, I get it. You only have friends that you want to sleep with!"

They become indignant, but it's true.

Why is it so in the gay world?

I just don't know.

Recently I made what I thought was a good potential friendship with a well known personality in some circles. Sadly, when it became evident several years ago that he was in fact gay and he lost his family, he also lost his livelihood....and friends.

Through a various chain of events, he came into my sphere...and I began a correspondence with him. He bared his heart to me. (Since I was not a fan of his....and had been unfamiliar with him in his heydey....I made it clear that I was not starstruck....and that I wanted nothing from him....other than friendship.)

So, as a sign of trust and friendship....and because I knew what he looked like, I thought it would a nice touch to send a picture of me with my kids. This way it would make me seem more real....more human....and he could know that I was a genuine friend.

Boy, was I surprised.

The picture must have scared him to death because I've not heard from him since I sent the picture.

I guess I'm just another victim of..."I can't be friends with anyone I wouldn't want to have sex with!"

Another potential good friendship......down the tubes!

Wednesday Morning

I awoke this morning well before dawn.

It's one of those days where I felt like the weight of the world was sucking the life right out of me as I lay in my bed. It's hard to describe....but that's why I woke up so early.

So I used the time to send some email to friends....and to just pray and meditate. Right now I'm feeling better....and actually I don't have any reason not to be encouraged. Mother appears to be doing fine....Dad is fine....and all my children are well.

I just get kind of critical about myself...and pick at all my little flaws...and wonder why I am the way that I am. I guess this is the evil of being perfectionistic...because I want to be perfect in all my ways.

Hopefully today will be a good one.