I suppose I’ve always known I would be an activist when I grew up. I watched movies like “Remember the Titans” and my blood would boil at the blatant intolerance and injustice that society sometimes perpetuates. What I would be fighting for, I didn’t know, but there is always a problem out there, and as a child I was determined to find it, and fix it. How ironic it is that the problem found me, and now that it has, that I want nothing to do with it.

I titled my blog “Discovery” because that has become my favorite word as I have grown up. Those that know me are aware that at times I can be a little OCD, and that I am continually striving for perfection in my life, and the world around me. As a child I really took to heart the sunday school lessons that told us that our goal in this life is perfection, and that we must continually strive for it. That overwhelming word, “Perfect”, dropped onto my 9 year old mind like a boulder. It dissected my every move, held me up against an impossible bar and told me again and again that I was failing. We all experience this when we are reminded of how we ‘should’ be. It is always so uncomfortably clear how well we are doing at failing.

This ideal haunted me for years. It was when I learned the meaning of the word “Discovery” that I was finally liberated from the crushing expectations of perfection.

Discovery is usually found in the same sentence, or paragraph, (or book at least) as the names, attitudes and mindsets of great scientists. Scientists discover. That’s what they are good at. They question, they probe, they wonder and dream of possibilities that no one else has thought of before. They discover how things work, why they work, and how to make it work for them. And if you do your homework, you will realize that not a single discovery was made without hundreds of mistakes being made first. As I drew the connections between making a scientific discovery, and trying to live a perfect life, it was like a giant lightbulb going off in my head. I GET IT NOW! When Thomas Edison invented the lightbulb, he first invented hundreds of lightbulbs that didn’t work. But no one cares. He just wasn’t done yet. You can’t tell him that his other lightbulbs were mistakes, because they led him to one of the biggest successes in history. Could it be that his failures, his many mistakes were ‘perfect’ mistakes? Artists also live by similar mindsets. Try telling Picasso that the eyes go above the nose. He’ll just laugh. Because in art, there is no “right” or “wrong.” When an artist creates something, they are discovering as much as they are creating. One of the most fundamental aspects of discovery is to let go of pre-determined ideas of how things should end up. As I came to view my life as a scientist would view a new, strange object, and viewed myself as an artist, I learned a beautiful lesson. Let Go. Let go of ‘right’ or ‘wrong.’ Let go of ‘good’ and ‘bad.’ Quit trying to fight the current of your life and instead, discover where it is taking you. Life is a discovery. We are here to discover how to live. Discover how to interact with each other. Most importantly, we are hear to discover ourselves.

That being said, I can now turn to the topic I originally wished to address. To fight the current of your life would be like wading upstream in a fast moving river. It can be done, but it is unbelievably exhausting, and eventually you will wear your self out, and at that point, you will probably drown. It is a miserable way to live. I have spent the last 10 years of my life fighting, hiding, and running from the fact that I am gay. I grew up LDS, and as many people know, my church does not support the gay lifestyle. I love my church, and I have tried for years to follow the counsel of bishops, counselors and prophets. It saddens me to report that despite all the loving advice and instruction given, there is something missing still. There are still questions that need answers. And it is about time I stop hiding in my closet, and get out there and help look for those answers. I will always love and support my church. I will be a member there as long as the church will have me, which I hope is my entire life. I also need to start loving myself. My entire self. I can’t keep lying, or pretending to be something I’m not. I am gay. I don’t really want to be, but I am, and I need to accept that part of myself. So I am done fighting the current. I choose instead to float with the river, to discover where my life is taking me, and to enjoy as much of it as I can.

“Now, perfection has finally become a goal, instead of a stick I use to beat myself into shape.”

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At the center of your being you have the answer; you know who you are and you know what you want.

Lao Tzu