I find myself at a crossroads.
I'm going to choose the path that leads into the rainbow.
Being that I'm a gay man, it also brings to light that there should be more acceptance in the world we live in today. A friend recently stated that she didn't want to be tolerated, which stuck with me.
I want to be who I am.
I'm OVER apologizing inside my mind. I always get mistaken for being straight — more times than I'd like to admit. This could also be why I am still single; perhaps it could be that I'm still waiting for my Prince Charming and the Happily Ever After moments that haven't manifested.
It still shocks me to this day that so many members of my community remain in the closet. I was living in fear of judgment, loss of work, or to the point of even being fired. It's not something I go around broadcasting from the top of the Green Mountain, but perhaps I should.
Any number of situations could arise from speaking my truth. I might not get hired for a photography job because I'm a gay man. You might think that this is a limiting belief, that I would potentially hurt my photography business. Nonetheless, I would rather be true to myself.
I have never said this so publicly. I'm GAY!, especially in the professional sense.
I am not sure all of my extended family know; I'm sure they've whispered like all families do or assume without ever asking.
So now you know.
Do you care? Do you still love me?
I think so, I'm the same person, and nothing has changed. Except now you know my truth. You now know what the closest people in my life have known for many years.
Let's face it: Hate is a learned behavior. No one is born into thinking or acting a certain way; everyone is a blank canvas when they're born. It's the conditioning from those surrounding you that shapes your beliefs, ideals, and prejudices.
I have wonderfully supportive parents who are probably the kindest people I've ever met. They have installed values in me that I can never repay. I was raised to be proud, care for others, be generous, work hard, and never let anyone bully me. When you're values are grounded with roots like this, you can only grow in a place of love and understanding. I'm sure without a doubt that my parents are proud of me. There isn't a day that goes by that I don't try to instill these values in those I come in contact with.
When someone is taught that their own feelings are innately wrong, if they're not deemed worthy in the eyes of their loved ones, it is a shame. I've grown into a confident person. I accept everyone, and I know what it feels like to be looked at like there is something wrong with me. I am not normal if everyone's "normal" lives in a world where love isn't the first thought. Then perhaps normal isn't what I ever wanted to be.
Extraordinary sounds more like a descriptor I would like to live up to.
Let's bring love to the forefront.
Love thy neighbor whether they appear to be different from you in gender, religion, race, or social-economic status.
Spread love, kindness, and acceptance.
Please share this; I'm no longer hiding.
You shouldn't either.
B. Farnum Photography is a proud supporter of equality and the LGBTQ community. Love is Love.