11. My mom and dad gave me love freely and yet, I thought I had to be perfect in order to be loved. Some parts of myself I just couldn’t accept, and thought nobody else could either. This led me to think I was unlovable if anybody really knew me. Thankfully, I’m working on loving even the shadow side.
12. My first biggest experience with death was the loss of my maternal grandmother. I spent many, many days of childhood over at her house, watching movies, reading cooking magazines, and eating delicious butter laced food. Losing her led to gut wrenching sobbing at her funeral and still buried grief years later.
13. No one fight with a loved one necessarily stands out in my mind as something I would end the relationship over. I consider loved ones so close that not having them in my life is kind of unthinkable. At the same time, I have had deep friendships that have come to an end, for whatever reasons that may be.
14. My first bad break up lead me to finally realize what a taste of heartache was like. Crying and anger and bargaining and longing. Songs on the radio that became all the more meaningful. I struggled to move on and kept hoping something would work out in the end. Unfortunately, that is not going to be the case. Back into the dating race I go.
15. I am a supporter of the Trevor Project, which is a suicide hotline especially for queer youth.
16. I used to be pretty damn fat, and yet never really realized it at the time, year after year putting on slabs of lard. Eventually, thankfully, I decided to get healthy by eating better and moving more. I’m so grateful to be in better shape and feel good about my progress. At the same time, I can’t seem to move beyond some of my extra skin. It’s a process.
17. Political matters are so challenging. I’ve had ups and downs being surrounded by different parties and ideology.
18. The first instance of causing someone emotional pain is when I broke up with someone I was dating. I’d never really done that before. I broke the news and figured I’d give them time and space to process, so left them to be. I knew I was feeling relief, but imagine their emotions were not quite as benign.
19. My biggest trauma was growing up gay, and I’m not sure I’ll ever fully overcome the shame, but I’ll keep working on loving and being proud of who I am, who I was meant to be.
20. I sometimes wonder if mentioning something to a client was more than they could handle. It gave them a reason to terminate therapy, although I really do think they were already drifting away.