Saturday, January 01, 2011

We Begin Again

Thomas Merton was a great spiritual writer of the 20th century.  Maybe the greatest, at least from a Christian perspective; but his work really crosses a lot of boundaries.  Many saw him as a great spiritual "guru" of a sort.  But  he never saw himself that way.  One of my favorite quotes from him is, "Surely, we are all beginners."

It is comforting, helpful, refreshing, and hopeful for me to hear such words from such a one as Thomas Merton!  There's hope for me yet!  I'm beginning so many things.  I'm beginning to discover "me."

Christmas Day Snowstorm 2010
Coming out, even to myself, at such a late age has given me the advantage of a more supportive environment.  The world has changed so much from my early days of rejecting the possibility that i might be gay.  No.  Not me.  Couldn't be.  And that's be 30+ years ago.  Denial.  Hiding.  I didn't even know what closet I was in.

Now. Now is so different.  And out feels so good.

And in other news . . . . 

My housemates (hosts, really) are gone till mid-January.  So if you want to come visit, there's room amongst the cats.  Not the prettiest time to visit my neck of the woods, but not so bad, either.  A foot of snow has melted already, and there is promise of some warmer temps and sun.  Has been a bit lonely around the house.  I've come to appreciate anew the gracious hospitality I'm offered with C & S.  It's nice to have some folk to come home to.

I've taken a few tests of late.  Tests that have raised my anxiety greatly!  Fear has been rampant.  But I took the bull by the proverbial horns and got it over with.  Thank you God!  The anxiety built up over the "grading process" was more than I'd admit to.  The major test was a quick one, resulting in nothing to write home about.  And that's a very good thing.  You get what i'm talking about (and email me if you don't).  A good way to start the new year.

After it all, I was really emotionally over wrought.  And I did something that is a bit difficult for me:  I called a friend and said, "I need some hugs."  And, God bless him, he was there for me.  Just hugs, and dinner, and talking.  Nothing more.  I didn't need advice or solutions, or sex - just a friend.  I'm learning to make friends.  Up close and in person.  Surely, we are all beginners.

And, I finally made an appointment to have my eyes checked.  It has been a while!  But insurance has changed so that I can afford it!  And my eyes are very healthy, but very different!  I mean the prescription on the lenses will be totally different.  I will be able to see well again!(No, I still won't be able to see straight).  It's really a minor thing in some ways, but it's been driving me batty!

We begin again.  We start over.  It's not back where we were, it's someplace new.  But we begin it again, nonetheless.

And the end of all our exploring
Will be to arrive where we started
And know the place for the first time.
T.S. Eliot, Little Gidding, near the end of the poem.  It's one of Eliot's Four Quartets.



Paul said...

Glad that you are hanging in there. Miss being in a little closer proximity to you dear bear, but you are in my prayers often. Hugs from the Pacific Northwest.


Cubby said...

Happy New Year Joe! Please accept a long warm hug from me from across the miles :-)

Birdie said...

Only those who continue to grow face new beginnings. Scary but worth every bit as you step through the fear. Happy New Year, Big Bear.

BentonQuest said...

Hugs and Happy New Year from the north!

Donald said...

Maybe the upcoming time by yourself will get to feel comfortable in a way you didn't expect.

Hope all goes well this year.

Vương Tử Trực said...

Happy New Year!

Lemuel said...

"'Tis the gift to be simple, 'tis the gift to be free...
to turn, turn shall be our delight,
'till by turning, turning we come 'round right."
HUGS, peace, and God's Grace to you in all things!

RG said...

Happy New Year!

Now, since your hosts are gone, my imagination has take flight! You won't be needing your new glasses since you'll be wearing a blindfold 'n all. ;)

Topper said...

Happy 2011, Yes we are all beginners, every day! We are new creations in Christ.

I completely relate to your coming out experience and the freedom you feel now. I understand! Thank God for peace!

Ron said...

"Surely we are all beginners" true. I can state that at 69 year of age, every day is a new beginning for me.

I wish you much happiness my friend in this new year and send you hugs from the coast of Delaware.

Ur-spo said...

I hope 2011 is your best year yet.

Erik Rubright said...

Belated Happy New Year to you! And *hugs* to you!

K-A said...

This year is going to be great! Hugs to you.

Java said...

Oh, honey, please don't start to see straight now, after finally coming out of those closets! I'm glad you'll be able to see more clearly, and hope that the clarity pervades many aspects of your life.

A friend! Now that's cool. I should try something like that. Good for you. :)

Ice John's World said...

Happy new year!

Greg said...

Happy New Year, Joe Bear. Sorry I been away from this here blog so long. I'm glad to hear you're doing so well!

Seeing straight, indeed.