Sunday, March 7, 2010

My Shadows

This is from a journal entry from 29 November 2009

I've been trying to take care of myself so that I would be more willing to go to work on Monday. But I still don't want to go back there. I don't want to waste waste any more time with work that is not aligned with my soul.

So after watching my new movie "The Shadow Effect," I'm asking myself what my shadow is. What do I hide and what about me am I ashamed of?

My fear and anger? My father?


I allowed my life to be compartmentalized in my late teens and early twenties. I had a public life with my family and the people I went to school with. I had a life of drinking and drugs. I had a life of gay sexual pleasure.

On some level, I have one life today, but since I don't really feel comfortable allowing myself to be gay among my family and co-workers, it still feels like two lives. I don't necessarily feel that I should force them to hear me say how many men I had sex with in the bath house last night. But I feel like that world is so far removed from the other that I am still split in two.

Growing up, I always was compelled to do the right thing. I did well in school and worked with the teachers - a teacher's pet. I was often picked on and was not popular. I wanted to hide and not be noticed because having people notice me tended to be painful.

That changed when I started hanging out with a bad (straight) boy who was very free with his sex, alcohol and drugs. He taught me to embrace my animal desires and I was no longer unpopular, but I still couldn't be gay in that crowd.

So, something was released in me when I discovered anonymous gay sex. I became free. I was appreciated by men using my body for pleasure and I loved the feeling of attention and desire. I had never been so thoroughly appreciated like that before.

My Father

When I was growing up and saw men on TV, they were always so clean and professional. My father was nothing like them. He was dirty and mean and animalistic. I wanted to be anything but him, so I became a teacher's pet.

I had to be smart, even if I wasn't. When my father asked what I learned in school and I didn't know the answer - I was shamed and he became angry and I was even more afraid to answer. Maybe it was then that I decided to do so well in school that he would believe I was learning something without him asking what it was I learned.

I learned to be afraid of my emotions and Spock became my role model. But I still have feelings and I've learned how to suppress them - so when they boil over, they tend to be angry outbursts in traffic. I am ashamed of my emotions.

I am afraid/ashamed of who I would be if I would let myself be myself. I am afraid I would be my angry father who I'm ashamed of.

What I don't like in him: Anger, racism, poor, primitive, uneducated, dirty, smelly, unloving, alcoholic, unthinking, unreasonable, ignorant, close minded.

Spent Energy

  • My coworkers don't know I have HIV or that I'm a nudist. I want to work someplace where there are more people like me.
  • One of my strengths is connectedness, but I don't have anyplace where I get that. I feel disconnected, but I'm afraid to connect. If I'm known deeply, then they'll find out that I'm not who I pretend to be. Then they'll know who I really am and not like me. Am I unlovable? I'm weak. I'm emotional. I'm petty and self-centered. I'm defensive. I'm shallow and my life is meaningless.
  • My underlying feeling is that I'm afraid because I am weak and emotional like my father.
  • I judge other people who look foolish because I feel foolish, and I don't want to be seen as foolish but I feel like a fool.
  • I can masturbate for the camera, but I'm afraid to communicate verbally.

This is what I spend enormous amounts of energy to keep hidden.

When I can proudly be weak, emotional and foolish - then I will be free.

I am not my thoughts

This is from a journal entry from 20 November 2009

I am grateful for this opportunity to learn to stop identifying with my thoughts. Sometime over the summer, I recognized that I was not my thoughts - so it's something I know. But my thoughts are always there, always telling me there's too much to do and not enough time and I'm not talented/skilled/smart enough to do this. The resistance and tension become unbearable. I can't continue.

None of this is true. My thoughts lie to me. It doesn't matter if I can meet the deadline. The most important part of this project is learning that I don't have to be frozen in fear. I am not my thoughts. I will continue to practice not identifying with my thoughts, knowing that they are only a tiny part of my arsenal, knowing that I am greater than this, and learning to set aside my emotions so that God in me can actively manifest in my life.

In what ways am I free today?

This is from a journal entry on 18 November 2009:

In what ways am I free today?
  • At work, I can take breaks and run errands whenever I choose.
  • There are no rules about when i arrive for the day or when I leave for the day.
  • I can bring my lunch or go out.
  • When I go home after work, I can spend the evening naked.
  • When I'm on vacation, I can have a mohawk.
  • I can go wherever I choose during my vacations.
  • My right ear is pierced and I can have other private piercings as I like.
  • I can breathe deeply.
  • I can masturbate in the bathroom stall at work.
  • I can walk out of my contract with a few days notice. There is nothing holding me in this contract except for the desire to earn what I'm earning from this company.
  • I can take another job where I'm making less money.
  • I am free to relax and enjoy my work.
  • I am free to get new tattoos.

November '09 Insights

  • I am how I see the world. How can I see it better?
  • I understand that the only way to overcome fears is to step through them, but I have a hard time having a sense of that power.
  • I think faith is one of the best ways of releasing that courage and power. Then it's not my courage, but God's.
  • I can also let myself know that I have the authority over my life, that I am in charge. I make my own decisions. I speak for myself. That is empowering, but it comes with responsibility.
  • I am already enough. I am whole and complete. There's nothing else I need to do to finish becoming who I am. I am not my fear. I am not my depression. I am not my anger. I am not my thoughts. I am love.
  • I'm looking for a philosophy that helps me find inner peace and have the confidence to be myself. Then I can teach that as an author/blogger/web designer.
  • There is part of me that is greater than my perceived weaknesses. I don't have to have the strength as God in me does.
  • On some level, the job I have must be meaningful work, or I would not have been given it to do.
  • I'm learning that I'm not my thoughts - that I can let them do what they want as I focus my attention on the reality of the present moment.
  • I can recognize that when I think I'm wasting my time at work and that I'm not competent to do it, then those thoughts are lies.
  • Everything is exactly the way it's supposed to be, I have not been given more than I can handle.
  • This is my life. No one else may make choices for me. No one can tell me how to live my life. I have the right to be a pervert and a freak.
  • No one can tell me what I should feel or what I should think.
  • I am allowed to be foolish, emotional, selfish and weak.