Being stagnant should be easy. What is so challenging about staying still? Nothing really, and yet for me, I am tormented by the lack of movement. My life has become stagnant in one of the most important areas and it is driving me crazy. One would think that the internal motivation I have to seek change would be drive enough for me to make some differences in my life. And yet, here I am, still in the same place.
I want to push myself to do more education and advocacy surrounding the queer community. I have had several great ideas and haven’t been able to act on any. Im normally the type of person who does what they want and gets thins done; yet, I have found myself stuck.
Here’s my dilemma- pursuing the field I want to pursue and doing so in the way that feel natural for me essentially mean outing myself. I cannot do honest work if I am not honest with those I am speaking to. The problem is, It’s pretty comfortable in the closet. The kind of comfort that is suffocating from close quarters in the dark and even though I can smell the scent of moth balls and my body aches from being so confined, I have a safety zone in here. I can watch the outside world, and honestly, its a scary place. Since leaving my hometown, I lack social support aside from my girlfriend and my dogs, though I doubt my dogs will be any match for the hate and judgment that queer individuals face.
I am a lucky queer because no one thinks I am queer. It’s the most beneficial and painful double edged sword I’ve ever come in contact with. As a result, It is so easy for me to chill in my closet and no one is the wiser. No one comes looking fo me with hate filled pitchforks because I don’t “look” the part. On the contrary, my lack of apparent queerness means that I have to intentionally come out to every individual I meet. It’s painful and tedious. So I don’t.
Is anyone else wondering why I am so stagnant? I’m not.
So, I have some fear, fear that is internal and fear that is justified by circumstances outside of myself. I am not afraid of pursuing my goals, not afraid of failing, not afraid that I will publicly mess up. I am afraid of being known. What does my world look like once I sort through the carnage of coming out?
I have been pretty brave in the past. I came out at work, an environment that was not queer friendly, nor diverse for that matter. It brought headache and heartache. Months of walking into work not sure if I was going to throw up ten minutes after arriving or if I would make it through the day without crying. Months of mental exhaustion. My bravery allowed me to be hurt in a way that has not even begun to heal, and in a way that keeps me stuck in the closet where it is safe.
I can quit a job if things get bad. I can’t quit my life. There aren’t classified ads where I can apply to be someone else. There is no alternative to life after coming out except to suffer through the consequences and rebuild. And I am too afraid of what those consequences will be, at this point, to take that risk.
So I am stagnant.