Friday, January 8, 2010

Plan B


“The most successful people are those who are good at Plan B.”   - James Yorke (1941)

Plan A took a dive and is out. What was it? Plan A required things like going back to church, no drinking or drugs, no dating guys, and doing all the things I'm supposed to do (like praying, scripture study, and the likes). Yeah, plan A is out. Plan B is what we called the alternative (whatever it looked like) to plan A. For now, plan B has three guiding ideals: (1) at any given point, I hope to be able to say that I truly am happy to be the person that I've become - that given the chance, I would really choose to be nobody else; (2) where I'm at, the actual place where I'm living and the city, it needs to be the place that I feel is right - I believe that location is important and that I need to be living in the right places as time moves on; and (3) what I'm engaged in, the purpose for which I'm laboring, is something that I really believe in - it's what I need to do if I am to pursue my personal legend (see The Alchemist by Paulo Coelho). Plan B is really all I want and it's what I can do.

Plan A is out because I'm sick of it - I got sick from it.

After the novelty of returning to church wore off, it became empty, hollow, and painful. I heard shallow words and echoes. Commandments and standards that seemed more subject to culture than love and God. The main reason I'm done with it is because while I can choose to be LDS, I can't choose to be gay. Sure, I don't have to "give in" to my feelings, but tell that to my feelings. If I don't give in to the desire and hope for love, then the venom of fear and depression will end me. Since homosexuality isn't allowed in the church, I'm out. I'm still searching for spirituality and I believe in so many things still...but I'm out of the organization.

Substances? Well, drugs are out. The occasional drinking? Eh, I'll just make sure to be safe. In the last eight months, I drank 3 times. No drinking-to-cope and no drugs and I won't find any problems with it.

Dating guys? Well, my number is xxx-xxx-xxxx. Haha. I've dated only one guy since returning to UT and being with him brought me the greatest happiness I've known in years. Walking arm in arm, smiling just because you're together, feeling vulnerable and safe because of him, sitting silently in one another's arms complete and content - why would I ever cut that kind of love out of life? It is real and virtuous.

What brought on the change? Oddly enough, it was church and family. You'd think that under their influence, I'd have stuck with plan A all the way. Ha! After being blacklisted and thrown out...yeah, I'm bitter. I'll admit it. Some of them say that they still love me...they just need space, I say whatever. I'll take a raincheck on this thing you're calling love. Some of my dearest family told me to stay away - to not even call. Some others are upset with me for "leaving the church." Do they think I wanted to? Do they think it was a quick or easy decision? Do they realize that it scares me to death? I thank God for the ones that love and support me in my journey to find peace. As far as church's influence in ditching plan A, it's pretty well explained above. Simply put, I just couldn't bring these two things (homosexuality and traditional religion) into harmony with one another. I could stand the dissonance for only so long before I fell ill from it. I'll have to try to find God in other ways.

Until next time.

14 comments:

The Faithful Dissident said...

Robert,

Thanks for this heartfelt post. I feel your cynicism and apathy and you won't get any judgments from me.

I'm strugling with the same issues as you are, I think (except that I haven't been treated as poorly by my family), but for slightly different reasons. I invite you to read my latest blog post as it may give you some ideas for creating a new path for yourself where you WILL be happy and healthy. That should always be the priority.

Anyways, if you ever want to "talk," send me an e-mail: thefaithfuldissident at gmail dot com. I think those of us who are in similar boats should be rowing together. :)

FD

MoHoHawaii said...

Here's to plan B! You can do it have a great life.

Best wishes.

Bror said...

Yay for plan B! Thanks for the post. What you say is so true. I wish you the best.
hug

Bravone said...

Robert, We all desire peace, joy, and happiness. You know my journey, and how I have found them in my life. I want you to find the same in your life. I respect that how we reach those objectives can vary from person to person.

You are one of my dearest friends. You have helped me through some of my most difficult moments. I want us to continue to be a part of each others lives. No matter the path either of us takes, I am confident that our mutual love and respect will continue to grow and thrive.

Thank you for making room in your life for me.

A Gay Mormon Boy said...

Kudos to you. It's clear you didn't make some spur of the moment decision you don't think will stick.

My strategy to life is very trial-and-error-based. If I'm not happy, I need to change the piece that keeps me from being happy.

PS-- I appreciated the Coelho reference.

Andy Foree said...

I love you. You are one of the greatest and strongest people I have met in my life. Your decision for a Plan B is a good one. I am thinking of choosing to follow my own Plan B as well. You are a good man, a strong man, one that has a testimony of the love of God and of the Savior. You are justified in your cynicism and claims. I can only hope that your family begins to become true followers of Christ and accept you who you are. We all love you.

Troy said...

Big HUG to you Robert!

El Genio said...

Good luck with the new plan! New possibilities are always exciting, especially when there is the chance of finding your special someone out there.

Robert said...

Faithful Dissident - Haha, yes, we can definitely help each other out. Your latest post called on a lot of questions. "But if you haven't studied the other religions of the world and walked in the shoes of someone who practices another faith, how can you "know" that yours is the "only" true religion -- either intellectually or spiritually?" I especially liked this. I really don't disbelieve in the LDS Church, I just have come to the point that I hope I can find as fulfilling a belief by attending another church - one where homosexuality is not a sin.

MohoHawaii - Thank you man. I really hope I can find happiness in another way of life. I hope that my happiness isn't enexerably tied to LDS-ism - that my belief system can change.

Bror - thank you man so much. Yeah, it's definitely plan B now. But it's hard. I feel like I'm turning my back on something that I've loved all my life, that I'm deserting. Ech, hopefully this feeling will change.

Bravone - Hey man, we will always be friends. I appreciate your help and love so much. I really wish that I had found peace in going back. Wow, do I ever. But I've really got to find some way of feeling right. Love you man.

GMB - Hey man. Yeah, I really hear you on the trial and error thing. That's really what I'm doing right now. I'm really trying other things...and hoping that they'll yield something good and healthy. It's a pretty scary venture. Stepping away from the church like this is like leaving home for the first time. I don't want to go, but I'm afraid that staying would be worse. Time will tell.

Andy - I hope you really know how much I love and value you. Really man. I love you so much. Thank you for loving me and for taking such good care of me...in the past and even now. Love you man.

Troy - Thank you so much man. I appreciate your writing and friendship so much. Do contact me next time you are in UT. Love you Troy.

El Genio - Exciting, yes. But scary too. I definitely love the possibility of finding life-long love and peace and companionship. Oh, please, let me find it.

robert said...

Good for You! Be light, be live. Your life will rock for all the right reasons. It takes a great deal of maturity to stand on your own and weather the judgments of others. But they are just that and nothing more.

Kurt said...

go forth and love

Keaton said...

I lose sleep over this post

Robert said...

Robert - Thank you robert. It has definitely been hard to do this thing and I've been working really hard to change this feeling that I'm walking out on the Lord. I went to a Lutheran service last Sunday and it was really nice. I'm going to go back. They're an affirming church (gay friendly). I hope that I can find a love for God again. Love you man.

Kurt - I love you Kurt. Thank you for your support. When you make another trip to UT, I wanna know. Love you man.

Keaton - I would never want to make you lose sleep or heart! I don't hate the church. In some ways I think that might make this easier. I actually continue to meet with the bishop once a month. He's a good man. I just need to find a few new values, ones that I can believe in as virtuous and ones that I can live by as a gay person. I'm hopeful...even if I do feel discouraged sometimes. Thank you for your love. Really, thank you Keaton.

Butterflies and hand-grenades said...

I have seen that Picture before...And I love seeing it. So thank you for that. Additionally thank you for not being afraid to risk getting hurt for that chance at love, you deserve, and will find it!
-BHG