Saturday, October 13, 2007

Repost 2/7/07: The Burn


It's no secret my mother has been emphatically against me being gay. Since the moment I told her I was gay, she has become increasingly aggressive with her desire to get me to change. Stopping to consider how this affects me doesn't seem to cross her mind, and figuring out ways to hurt me seems like it's her new favorite past time. When I originally posted this, I asked myself a question. "Was it worth it?" I know I can't change the past, but answering this question truthfully now, will affect my perception of my mother forever. I talk about this as if I haven't already come to a conclusion, which would be an absolute fallacy. Last night my mother and a few of my brothers and sisters made me aware of how unwelcome I am. My mom even brought up this very incident and asked me what happened to her son who used to stand for something. Truthfully, I have no idea what happened to the son she remembers, he's certainly not anywhere I have looked.

I have this scar on my arm. It starts at my elbow and it used to go all the way down to my wrist. Over the years my scar has shrank and faded away due to my aunt’s (she’s a dermatologist) constant care. Still the memory of how I received my scar has never faded.

Most people don’t know the difference between the degrees of burns. A first degree burn means that the outer layer of skin has been burned, the epidermis. A second degree burn means that the burn got through the outer layer of skin and damaged the second layer, the dermis. A third degree burn goes right through the first two layers of skin and damages the hypodermis. It can also involve muscle damage and even burn all the way down to the bone.

Third degree burns are tricky bastards. They burn through the nerves, so they don’t actually hurt. The only pain that people feel, are from the areas where there are second and first degree burns. So the fact that you can’t feel it actually tricks you into thinking that you aren’t as hurt as you actually are. For a few moments you think that you might actually be okay. It’s a lot like when a cartoon character runs off the side of a cliff, and for a moment he's floating in midair, but then he looks down! If only he hadn’t looked down, he would have stayed suspended in the air indefinitely.

When the iron frying pan came crashing down on my arm, it felt cold. I thought that I was invincible. Then I saw chunks of my skin stuck to the bottom of the pan as he raised it up to hit me again. I heard my skin sizzle, and I knew I was hurt. Out of the corner of my eye, I saw my mother behind me. She was pregnant with my sister, and I knew I had to do whatever it took to protect her.

I was getting out of the shower last night, drying off in front of the mirror. I looked up at my reflection and I noticed my scar for the first time in a long time. I remembered who gave it to me, and why I had it, and for a split second I thought to myself, “Was it worth it?”

My mother can’t even look at me anymore. She’s treating me like I am a disposable nothing. She makes me feel like she wishes I would die tomorrow, so at least she could preserve the memory of who I was, and not who I am or will one day become. That way she could pretend that I wasn’t a sinner and I wasn’t damned to burn in hell.


The scariest moment in my life wasn't this one. I know it seems pretty bad, but in the grand scheme of my life it barely cracks the top 5. The scariest moment of my life was the moment I realized that my mother wasn't going to be there for me because I am gay. It was scary because I knew even being surrounded by so many people that cared for me, my mother wouldn't be one of them and nobody could replace her. I have since come to realize that it could get even worse. Most of my brothers and sisters are now proud members of the, RGB is going to burn in hell alliance. It's a lot to take in. I am doing my best to not let this be a bigger deal than it is. But it kind of feels like a pretty big deal. Maybe I should do my best to take solace in the fact that they are doing this because they love me. Still if that were the case. I kind of wish they didn't love me so much.


Chris said...

I used to read your blog way back when and I have recently discovered it again. You are as eloquent as ever, but it seems like your spirit has been crushed. You are an amazing guy with a lot to offer the world. Don't let your mother make you forget how wonderful you really are.

jade says said...

Thanks for posting this. As someone who is facing trouble with family acceptance I really appreciate you sharing your story.

Mike said...

There is a great doc "For the Bible Tells Me So" it's playing at the Landmark Ken Theatre in San Diego, CA until Oct 18th.

The main theme of the doc is that it's so "unchristian" to condemn homosexuals. You might want to have you mom watch it.

The bible was used to support slavery and oppress woman for years. And it’s still being used to condemn homosexuals. The tide is changing but slowly.

Thanks for sharing. Don't give up on your mom just yet.

Jason said...

Since reading this post I have been staring at your arms trying to see this supposed scar. Then one day after I stopped looking I noticed you rubbing your right arm. I can't see the scar at all, but I noticed how the texture of your skin changed when you rubbed it and I could see where this burn was. I didn't say anything then because it seemed a inappropriate, but the way you soldier through everything that happens with your smile and your optimism really is something incredible. Thinking about all that pain you went through makes me hurt so much for you because you don't deserve any of this. Don't ever forget how special you truly are.