TW: alcoholism, drug use, hate crime
Hi Taylor- A bit about my story- let’s keep it anonymous, even though people who know me will be able to piece together my identity.
My father was 39 when I was born, my mother 38. I am my dad’s firstborn, my mother’s tenth. I didn’t find out until much later that my mother’s first husband had been murdered, my mother was the prime suspect, as she had plotted his death before. My parents were both serious alcoholics, but maintained a surface of normalcy ( think Mad Men). I do not remember ever not being terrified of my mother. Her rages, her impossible to meet standards, her contempt for Americans. My mother was English, and came to the US in 1949. She went through bombings, and her sister told me she never really recovered from the terror. My father was an absent figure for the most part- but he was a happy drunk. I was a smart kid- definitely not popular. My father had been career military, and was used to moving every few years. I became known a funny early on. It was a survival mechanism.
What made me who I am? Well, early on, I would read voraciously, and adapt traits I admired in books I read. Also, the idealism of Star Trek. North Seattle was fairly diverse in the seventies and eighties, so that helped me, too. Several if my teachers saw me for the broken bird I was, and nurtured me. I treasure these memories still.
By the time I was thirteen, I was an alcoholic addict. Like too many other children, I was put in Ritalin at and early age. I quickly became fond of mixing it with codeine cough syrup.
At 23, I went through rehab. At one point, I had eighteen years sobriety. I have had several colleagues and friends who are not from an Abrahamic faith background tell me that I am pretty enlightened for a westerner, or American. I credit the twelve steps for this.
Finally, as my twenty year marriage was coming to an end, and I was returning to the LGBT community, I was bashed. After living with heteronormative privilege for almost two decades, this made me realize that some others saw me as scary, a dangerous other. Ten days later, Danny was bashed. I drove him to the hospital. I had his blood on my shirt. While I am not as passionate as you, this led to what my therapist calls “Yoga Activism”. I do what I am comfortable with in an attempt to make the world better. I show that I am a person who believes in falling in love with people, not plumbing.
Sorry this is so disjointed. It flew out of my heart. I have so much else to day- discussing the active and passive abuse directed at me for much of my life, my relapsing alcoholism, the pain of my failed marriage. My yearning to be free of the bondage of self. My fears that I will never again find someone to share my life with. My hurt that my ex waited until our marriage was irretrievably broken before starting counseling, my love of the limelight, my feelings of aloneness in a crowded room. My occasion tinge of regret of not having fathered a child
Sigh. Feel free to share, or not. Again, please keep this anonymous. People who know me will recognize me. Thank you for this opportunity. Peace.