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.
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.
- 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.
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