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Feb 9, 2012

Traditional Thursdays

The recent media frenzy, which I guess I'm adding to, around the court ruling that prop8 isn't right has been crazy. I see other Catholic and Christian bloggers commenting on this topic. They have been using some very harsh language.

I've always viewed harsh language as too strong and immature for myself. Swearing does not add anything to my impression of others. In fact, cursing is what will make you lose respect in my eyes. I've worked in a variety of professional jobs. The language in each office and field location have only used appropriate language.

When you intentionally use foul language, you only show how uncreative you can be. I disagree with the heartbreak over the failure of prop8. I am celebrating the success of the view that marriage is more inclusive than just the strictly narrow view of just a heterosexual couple. I would love to be able to marry my sweetie. Right now, the law is against us being able to do that. Civil unions in Vermont and Massachusetts marriages not withstanding, marriage is still a privilege for my brothers but not me.

I have been married to a man before. That relationship was not healthy and ended in divorce. I learned my sexual orientation through that process. I believed the idea of saving your sexuality for marriage. I never expected to find that my sexuality was different than that of others I knew.

Growing up on military bases, no one would ever talk positively about gays and lesbians. There were no examples. This was pre-Ellen's show where she came out. This was back in the day of the original Star Trek being in reruns and the Star Trek Next Generation on television. There weren't any role models of sexuality other than heterosexual that I saw.

All conversation in high school was vaguely negative about gays and lesbians. Matthew Shepard was not to die for another five years. That's the kind of environment I, and many others, grew up in. Even after coming to terms with my own sexuality, I didn't let too many people know. I wanted to stay safe as my mom put it. I didn't go many places after dark except to go to and from work.

Even at work, I was not immune from crass treatment by others. A few winters ago, I was working the late second shift at a major retailer. My car was park near the building and was in view of the doors and cameras. One night, I went out to my car and got it cleared of snow. Got in to wait for the heater to warm up before leaving. Started the windshield wipers as it was snowing and melting on the front window. That's when I realized someone had done something to my window wipers. I got out, walked over to the passenger side. A dirty condom was covering the tip of the wiper.

I was suddenly enraged, angry, scared, and disgusted all at once. I used a pen to lift it off the wiper. Took it into the store. Dumped it in the trash. Asked my coworkers to call over the night manager. He looked at it was sickened too. He looked at the tapes of the night near my car. He said there was nothing that was discernible on the tapes and nothing that could legally be done. I'm still not sure of whether he did or didn't look at the tapes.

Later that winter, I was let go from that job as the winter hours were reduced after Christmas. I also had stood up for a lady customer who was told she couldn't go in the women's restroom because she was a man. This was someone with a marine haircut, but very obviously a woman from the front. I emailed store management about the rudeness of the employee. I asked if there was some kind of sensitivity training that all employees could take. I didn't let it go. Less than three weeks later, I was let go because of the Christmas rush being over.

That particular retailer didn't want me to go to the hospital when I burned my arm on the air compressor that had a short in the wiring. I told the highest ranking member of management that I was going to report the injury. He said I couldn't and refused to allow me to go to the hospital. I was accosted by my manager and another manager and told it would cost $14,000 if I went to the hospital. I have no idea where they got that number. But, it didn't lead me to not go to the hospital.

The ER staff thought it was bad enough that they gave me some Vicodin then and a script to get more later. When I told yet another manager I had been to the ER, she asked what they did. I told her that they gave me medicine and did basic first aid. She looked at me weirdly and implied that I just wanted the pain medication. It wasn't fair working for that employer.

Now, I'm healing and trying to get to a day with no headaches at all. I'm not sure if that is possible. The doctor said some people have langer than twelve months of pain from getting meningitis. That sometimes the pain can last till fifteen to eighteen months after contracting the disease. That is not encouraging news!

At least I know now and can try to work towards getting the headaches controlled. Currently, I'm on a month of extended medical leave from my job. If I am not able to go back to work at the end of this month, then I will be let go. I really hope that I'll feel much better by the end of the month. I'm not confident, but am hopeful. I mean its only twenty days. I doubt there'll be a big change in twenty days.

Miracles do happen. I am alive, and that is a miracle. I love God, family, and friends, including myself. Love is a miracle. I could have passed away in September, but like my mom, I'm a fighter for my health. I also have had a ton of people praying for me. Perhaps, my being sick is drawing them closer to God and Jesus. I hope that is the case. I can't change being sick, but I can hope that others are deepening their relationships with each other and with God.

Anyways, this has been one wacky post. Started with homosexuality and prop8, went through some tough times at a work location, and winded its way through religion to the end. I look forward to seeing what the future holds, even though I may also be scared of what it can hold. But, I can't influence the future so why be afraid or worried about it, huh?

If you have any questions, please feel free to leave a comment and I’ll get back to you. Enjoy! Don’t forget to Subscribe to my RSS feed!