Love

I wish I could say that I’ve been in a relationship.

I wish I could say that I’ve kissed a girl.

I wish a lot of things.

But, in all honesty, I would rather be in love. And…I must confess that I am.

I must confess that I am in love with someone, and when I say that, I mean I truly and deeply am.

I can’t go an hour without thinking about them. I can’t go a day without wishing they would text me. I can’t go a night without falling asleep with them on my mind nor a morning without them crossing my thoughts first.

I’m helplessly, hopelessly stuck. I love them. But, much to my sadness, they don’t love me.

I mean, I would do anything for them. My heart stops anytime I hear of them being hurt in sports. I would destroy anything that caused them pain. I would travel home in a second, no matter what happened or what was going on for me. I would be there the second they needed me.

You know, there’s a quote that Bob Marley said, and it’s stuck with me ever since I read it: “The truth is, everyone is going to hurt you. You just got to find the ones worth suffering for.”

For me, this one is worth suffering for.

True love, as I’ve come to understand it, is not about you at all. In any way, shape, or form. You will place yourself in danger for the other person. You will be reckless, and love with reckless abandon.

Why?

Because of them.

Because when you’re in love, truly in love, it’s all about the other person. Never once is it about you, and how they fulfill you. It all focuses on them. It all focuses on him or her. You fall for them and truly desire their complete happiness. You’ll do anything to make them happy and you won’t worry about yourself.

But that’s insane! Crazy!

To not worry about yourself at all?

That’s what the other person does.

They are the one who worry about you. You worry about them, them about you.

That is true love.

Besides that…how do I feel?

Despite the fact that they don’t reciprocate my feelings, I can’t see myself with anyone else. I look at them and see happiness. When I’m around them, I feel totally and completely at peace. As if nothing could ever go wrong again. When we’re around each other, it’s just us; everyone else is gone. I just can’t see myself without them in my future. And it’s painful. So very painful to know they don’t feel the same.

Regardless, I still have hope. I always will. I’ve prayed and begged and asked for this burden to be taken, because I cannot focus on anything other than them. But it hasn’t been moved. So I have hope.

There is no other who has made my heart sing like they can.

There is no other who makes me feel such a pleasure.

I could spend hours with them, just looking at them, eating, drinking, watching shows, listening to music, spending time with them. That’s it. I’m not just about sex, that’s not what true love is, or at least not all it is.

Me?

I love them. More than anything. And I won’t just give up. I’ll wait. I’ll be patient. Because until God shows me someone else, my heart will be theirs. Besides, I could do no better in my eyes.

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Labels

Labels.

Everyone uses them, and everyone seems to agree on them. But I, for one, do not like them.

A label instantly places people in a box. It gives them expectations. When someone is labeled as gay, the person who calls the gay person that has expectations that they expect the gay person to live up to. The so called gay person has expectations that they suddenly hold themselves to. Everyone expects them to act in a certain way. They know that everyone expects them to act in a certain way.

Society, society does all of this.

Now this isn’t going to be a tirade against society, I’m not that type of person.

But these labels, they pervade everything.

People as a whole feel the necessity to label everything.

Gay. Straight. Bisexual. Christian. Catholic. Muslim. Hindu. Depressed. Happy. Red. White. Black. Asian. Mexican. Latino. Gansta. Punk. Straight-edge. Druggie. Hippie. Hipster. Geek. Nerd. Bipolar. Schizophrenic. Suicidal. Jock. College student. Teenager. ADHD. ADD. Drunk. Anorexic. Bulimic. Moody. Bitchy. Jackass. Douche.

They all place preconceptions and expectations on every person who is called them, whether it is intentional or not; and every person can look at someone and they see things they expect.

What happens when someone tries to break the mold?

They get stuffed back in. They’re told by society that it’s not possible to break out of that box. That’s their box and theirs alone.

They aren’t allowed to change boxes.

Ever.

And don’t you dare try.

Suddenly, once a person has a label, that’s who they are. That’s what they act like.

You’re gay? You like every guy you see, you’re willing to do anything to have sex with a guy, you like shopping, your voice is high pitched, and you hate sports (preferring more feminine things like cooking and sappy movies).

You’re a born-again Christian? You believe that everyone is damned to hell for their sins unless they commit their lives to Jesus, you do nothing but go to church all the time, you say grace, you’re just happy, happy, happy, you only talk about God, and you never hang out with people who drink or get high.

You’re Asian? You’re obviously from China, you’re smart and like to do school work, you’re as smart as they come, are fantastic at math, you’re parents always expect you to get A’s in classes, and you’re going to be a doctor someday.

Give me any word, and I’m sure that there are any number of stereotypes out there that will just as easily apply.

You’re a college student? You go out and get hammered every weekend and never go to class.

You’re a teenager? You rebel against your parent’s any chance you get just because you hate them.

You can’t sit still at your desk in school? ADHD.

You sit and play video games all day? You’re lazy.

You’re overweight? You’re a slob.

You’re really thin? You just wanna look pretty and probably have an eating disorder.

You’re a woman? You’re frail and need to be protected.

You’re a man? You’re strong and should never cry.

Dear God will these stereotypes and labels ever stop??

Is it possible to be an overweight person who is perfectly happy with the way they are? Is it possible to be a man who cries and watches love stories? Is it possible to be a woman who loves to watch sports? Is it possible to be a jock who loves to read as well? Is it possible to be from Asia and not be the smartest person? Is it possible to be a believer in Jesus and not want to force your beliefs on everyone? Is it possible to be a lesbian AND love God?

Why must people be confined to one thing?

Why is it such a big deal that we need to have labels?

Why can’t you just be you. You happen to be from Mexico, enjoy reading, and love to listen to classical music while you work out in the gym three days a week despite being overweight and never losing the extra ten pounds that you’re really not that concerned about anyways?

Why can’t I just be myself?

Why does everyone need a label to define things?

I can honestly say that I don’t have an answer…but I know that I don’t look at people like that. I don’t peg people in boxes. I see no reason to, and I wouldn’t want to be pegged in a box myself. Get to know me, and you’ll get to know a lot of things about me. But don’t expect me to label myself just for you, because I won’t do it. And I wouldn’t want you to do it either.

All in all, I get kind of frustrated when a person’s first introduction is something like “Hi, my name’s Joe and I’m gay.”

Why not just start with “Hi, my name’s Joe.”

I’ll figure out the rest as we become friends. Just my thoughts anyways.

Passion

Passion.

Just saying the word probably evokes in you certain feelings. For most people, you probably go straight to someone you love, your spouse, partner, boyfriend, girlfriend, whoever it may be. For some others, you go straight towards what you truly love doing.

There’s something about passion that makes a person come alive. When I get the chance to talk to someone about their passion, too often it’s something that they do on the side. It’s purely a hobby. But when I talk to someone, and they start in on this subject, there’s just a change that comes over them. The way they speak changes. Their eyes dance with excitement. Their body language perks up. They’re alert, they’re energized.

You talk to me about working with Upward Bound or my novel, I could go for hours, and still have more to talk about after that. There’s something about passions that really draw me into them.

Honestly, in this world, there are far too many people who live bland and boring lives (albeit from my perspective) and they complain. There’s nothing exciting for them. There’s nothing that gives them a purpose and thrill everyday.

Upward Bound is the ONLY job where I have been thrilled to get up after only five to six hours of sleep. My life feels full and bursting when I do my work with them. When I have a hand in forming the lives of teenagers, my heart soars, my soul echos the sounds of joy, my purpose feels fulfilled and my life is satisfied.

I would gladly get up and spend long days teaching classes, going on trips, playing frisbee, listening to trials and tribulations, listening to complaints and praise, eating lunch, and just being around and with them.

That is one of my passions. The other is my novel. I could spend hours upon hours writing and reading and watching. Stories have always intrigued me, and even now they continue to flow in me. There is a story in me that is waiting to be told, to be spread and shared. And I have to share it. It is the story unique to me, and only me. My writings cause me to ponder deep things, to really talk of those things that are important. It’s an emotional outlet for me, and something that I seize everyday.

You want to know what has been going on in my life? Look at my writings. Read them. My life is played out through my characters. My life is poured into them. My hopes, my dreams, my fears, my sorrows.

Passion is something that evokes everything. It evokes every emotion possible. And you have to be prepared to find it. Unless you want to live a boring and bland life. While you may not get to use your passion to make a living (an unfortunate necessity) you surely can’t ignore it.

Find it.

Do it.

And your life will become that much more pleasurable and sweet.

And the world needs people who have come alive, because too many people are simply sleeping.

The Dark Night of the Soul

There are so many definitions of this term, the “Dark Night of the Soul.” I cannot claim to say that I have really studied what it is. I can say that I have been through them. One of them quite recently really.

And I can tell you that it sucks.

But I wouldn’t have it any other way.

It’s brought me to a new place of belief and trust. I am a Christ Follower, and my dark nights, I accept and embrace them. It’s painful, and I would rather not suffer them, but I know that when I come out from it…it’s that much sweeter.

There were a few, nay, more than a few times when I doubted my belief in God. More than a few times when I seriously doubted who God was, what he was doing for me, what he was doing in general. But let me say that he continued to carry me forward and I truly am grateful.

You see. God, he’s the most amazing person in the world. And for me, when I was at my lowest, he carried me. When I was at my highest, he carried me. He carries me always, and he has carried me through two dark nights. And they were certainly dark nights. But he carried me, and I am grateful. I know who I am as a person, and who I am in him. I have felt his love and for that I am so much more grateful.

So for those of you who are going through dark nights, remember there is an end. There is a dawn. There is a sweeter place where the sky is clear, the sun shines, and the air is clean. You will arrive eventually.

Be blessed.

About Writing

For me, there’s something about writing. 

There’s something about writing that let’s me speak. 

Oftentimes, when I get really frustrated, when I really want to say something, I turn to words. 

They are things that really never change. They are all there, ripe for the picking, to use for our purpose. 

It’s amazing, if you think about it, that the entirety, of the common trade language (although I’m not entirely sure how true that fact is anymore) is made up of only 26 letters and a handful of characters. That entire stories and histories and lives are made, summarized, and concisely portrayed with just 26 letters and a handful of characters. 

And that I can easily summarize my feelings with those 26 letters and those characters. At least more easily than I can speak them. 

For me, writing is cathartic. It’s a release from my mind into a world of my own creation. A world where I can, in many ways, control what happens. It relieves stress and I can breathe, I can think, I can see. 

I can know peace inside of me again. 

So I suppose that I don’t really know that much about *actually* writing…but I know what it does for me. I suppose that I shall eventually come to write some more helpful ways to write, I mean I am writing a novel, but for now, as my hopeful return to blogging, this will have to suffice. 

Cheers