With all this grown up things that have been happening in my life, being engaged, graduating, looking for a job, paying bills etc… and all this change that comes from the inside, all those people from my past that out of the blue ask to be friends on Facebook, someone today reminded me of some of the pain I buried so deep inside of me, that not even drunk me would`ve thought of.
It is not common knowledge, but when I was growing up, my family was very conservative, and we would go to church every sunday, and at one point every other day, I was a ballet dancer, yes, can`t be more gay then that, right!? I was lucky enough to be part of a church where ballet and dancing was part of the culture. It was hard living a double life, I had a boyfriend in school and I was only 16 years old.
Well, that is not my main focus tonight. I actually wanted to talk about the words we say and the impact those words can have on people.
Back on those church days, I remember coming out to my mom, I didn’t actually came out, she outed me … lol … early internet days I didn’t know how to clean the famous “browse history” and somehow my old queen knew how to check those out… who would know. Anyway, she as a true primadona, told me to look for my pastor and talk about what was going on with me. At my church we used to have a male and a female pastor, and of course, I went to the female pastor, I thought, well, she is a woman, she will understand me. I remember she took me to a small room, we both set down and I told her.
I still remember like it was today, that woman that I so admired, looked at me and said “Pedro, God did not create you like this, you need to take this feeling and bury deep inside of you, every time you see a man, you tell yourself, that is wrong, I like women!” those words came like a tsunami destroying everything I had.
I also remember with pride, that I left that office, I got into my moms car, crying, and I said to myself “who is she to tell me that God doesn’t love me? God made me like this! If he made me like this, HE loves me!” … It wasn’t that simple, I actually tried for a while (like a week) to do what she told me to do!
What I’m trying to share here is, now, I’m a grown up person, I’m 29 years old, and every time when I say something to one of my nieces, my youngest sister, or even my 2 year old nephew, I make sure that I think of my words twice, I make sure to think of the impact that those words will have on them.
I don’t blame that woman for what she said, that is what she believes, but I do blame her for not thinking of the impact of her words.
Going back to my old friend I “re-met” today on facebook, he went through the same experience with the same person, and it felt really refreshing to know that I overcame all of this, and I looked at my friend with compassion as he is still dealing with all those feelings and learning how to accept himself as he is.
You’re not alone. We are all together on this journey.