from the closet to the rooftop: coming to terms with being gay, married, and Mormon.

Wednesday, November 11, 2015

Some thoughts about sitting with conflicted feelings.

If you know me personally or have read my blog or recent Facebook posts you will see that my views toward the church are not entirely black or white. For most of my life, the church held such importance in my life. I was entirely committed and devoted to it for many years. I loved its teachings, its music, its programs, what it offered my family, everything. It was such a source of joy to me.

I loved the feeling of peace and fulfillment the church gave me when I was baptized at age 8. I was made to feel that even as a young kid, I was important, loved, and cherished of God. I remember the strong feeling of belonging when after my baptism I was welcomed into my ward family through confirmation and receiving of the Holy Ghost. I loved singing, "I belong to the church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints." I loved bearing my testimony every fast Sunday, and sharing with my community the various ways I had been prompted or strengthened by the gift of the Holy Ghost.

I took great pride in being ordained to the priesthood. I remember with fondness how my bishop told me when I was a teenager that my ordination at age 12 was his first act as a new bishop. I loved being able to serve my ward every Sunday by blessing and passing the sacrament as a teenager. I loved participating in baptisms at the temple as a teenager. I remember the reverence and awe I experienced the first time I went inside. I loved the way it made me feel deeply connected to something much greater than myself.

Connection. Peace. Fulfillment. Community. Belonging. Pride. I can attach so many positive emotions and memories to the church.

I can also attach so much pain to the church.  It was a source of conflict for me from a very young age. It was very much a part of why I didn't like who I was, and it made me do everything I could to try to be someone I am not. Hating myself for being gay left me with some very deep wounds.

As a grown man, the church eventually became a huge source of pain as I lost trust in its leaders, its foundations, and its teachings. Coming to terms with this and my own sexuality was the hardest things I've ever gone through. It hurts to be angry at something that once meant so much to you. I no longer believe or have a desire to follow all the teachings of the church myself, but the church still has a very powerful influence in my life. At times I wish I could escape it completely, but then I'm reminded of all the people I love that still love the church, and so I continue to interact with it.

Now, as I sit here holding a space for both these conflicted feelings in my heart, I'm left thinking about my own children. Part of me wants nothing more than for them to have all the opportunities that I had as a youth growing up in the church. Why would I not want them to experience all those positive emotions that I was privileged to have? The other part of me is angry, and wants nothing more than to protect my children from this organization that has hurt and continues to hurt me and insists on reminding them what a sinful person their father is.

There's been much hearsay and speculation about whether or not this new policy directly affects my children. Such a roller coaster of emotions I've been thrown on and there has yet to be any real answers from the church. My children's future in the church is in limbo and my emotions are being held hostage by the church as it grapples with how to move forward from here.

For now there's not much I can do but sit with these conflicted feelings, and allow them to teach me things about myself.

Friday, June 5, 2015


This weekend is Salt Lake City's LGBT Pride Festival. So I felt it's a fitting time to share this photo of me from last year's parade as I marched with Mormons Building Bridges, as well as some thoughts on this subject.
There was a time that I didn't understand why LGBT people felt the need to have their own pride weekend. I wondered why they felt the need to flaunt something so private as one's sexuality out in public. What I didn't realize until I came out to myself as gay was that I was confusing pride with arrogance. I came to see that Pride is really about casting off shame in one's identity, finding self-acceptance, and celebrating personal and societal growth. Of course, the event also becomes a celebration of LGBT culture, in much the same way that Pioneer Day celebrates the odd quirks of Utah culture.
When I was "in the closet," I lived my life with a rather crippling fear which led me to believe that if I was to be loved by anyone, I had to hide the truth about myself and work at being loveable. This fear and shame became a barrier to connection in my life. Consequently, I struggled to express love and feel loved. It wasn't until I started to come out that I learned this truth, as taught by Brene Brown:
"In order for connection to happen, we have to allow ourselves to be seen. Really, truly deeply seen."
I had to face my greatest fears. Fears of hurting those I love. Fears that I'd be rejected and would lose every meaningful relationship in my life. Fears that those close to me would see me as "lost" and "unworthy." Fears that I'd never find happiness or fulfillment as an outwardly gay man.
I risked all those things because of how badly I wanted a deeper kind of connection in my life. In allowing myself to be seen for who I truly feel that I am, I've found that many of those fears I had were unfounded. My family and friends still love me exactly as I am. I now have a great friendship with the mother of my kids. And bravely being who I am has injected my life's connections with refreshing authenticity. I've gained many more meaningful connections than I imagined was possible. I still have a ways to go, and authenticity is a daily practice, but I'm proud of where I'm at today.
To me, that's what Pride is about. It's about letting go of fears and being seen for who you truly are, regardless of what others may think. For me it's about being able to hold my boyfriend's hand as we walk down the sidewalk together. It's about not being afraid to come across as too emotional, too sensitive, or too effeminate. And it's about acknowledging my path and being grateful for every step I've taken and everything in my life that has made me who I am today.
I firmly believe that "coming out of the closet" isn't just for LGBT people. Everyone has their own closets of fear and shame to come out of. That involves facing our fears head-on and being proud of who we are. To quote Brene Brown again:
"Loving ourselves through the process of owning our story is the bravest thing we'll ever do."

Friday, November 29, 2013

Projected Darkness

You don't know the pain that lies
Behind the magazine-cover eyes.
My story you claim to understand
Your trek to have crossed my pathless land.

You perceive the cause of my lament
To be a case of mere discontent.
"Stop it!" you exclaim in mournful tone
"You have dimmed a countenance that shone."

But a closer look would help you see
A soul in search of integrity.
Responding to insecurities
We both reach out, but with different pleas.

Next time you see a darkened stare
Instead walk beside that soul with care.
Your balm does nothing for my health
When it comes off your self-righteous shelf.

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Letter to Myself

A friend sent me the link to this Craigslist posting yesterday. It is beautifully written and it really hit home for me. I got emotional when reading it because I really wish that when I was a 21-year-old BYU student that I had read this. It's something too great to get lost in the personals section of Craigslist, so I contacted the writer of the post. His name is Chris, and he was happy to let me repost it here. I hope you enjoy it as much as I did. 

Dear 21-year old RM BYU Mormon Me,


I know, it's hard to believe that I can communicate with you from the future, isn't it. In fact, when I was your age, I might not have believed it at all. It's because of the magic of the Internet. Oh wait, you don't even know what that is yet! Believe it or not, in the future everyone will have hand-held computer phones that are linked to one another. No, really, it's so cool! Your inner geek is going to love the future! That's how I'm sending you this message. 

I realize that I am going to need to give you some proof that I'm actually from your future. You have a lot of great things ahead of you, but let me tell you a few things about our mutual past that will convince you to trust me a little more as we move forward.

Let's see, you've just gotten home from your mission a few months ago and you're back at BYU again, right? You've returned home trailing clouds of RM glory and it has been a fairly smooth transition back into real life. I know, you were pretty sure that you would be married by now, huh. That girl that we assumed was waiting until we got home? Yeah, that was a pretty awkward when she met you at the airport with her fiancé in hand. It was a bit of a shock, but you handled it well, and spent a few days crying in the dark, but now you're back in the dating game and things are looking pretty good. Congratulations on surviving that!

The mission was a little harder than you thought it was going to be, wasn't it. I mean, whenever you talk to someone about it now, you have nothing but good to say, but trust me, as you get older, you'll realize that it was a difficult time. There are some things in your life you've been trying to suppress that are not going to get better in the next few years. In fact, that's the main reason why I'm here. 

Remember when you dropped out of wrestling in high school because of those uncomfortable feelings you had around other guys in the locker room and on the mat? And remember how sensitive you were about being called "gay" by the other guys even though everyone knew that it wasn't really true? 

Remember saying goodbye to that one terrific missionary companion that you were so close to? You knew it was going to be hard to say goodbye to him. He wanted to hug you in the apartment for the last time, and as you were hugging him, you realized that you didn't want to ever let him go and he leaned into you and you could feel his arousal and you turned your lips against his neck and brushed them right under his ear and he suddenly pushed you away. I'm sure you remember what we were feeling at that moment because I remember it like it was yesterday. I know that it seems easy to write off that whole experience as "missionary desperation" or whatever. Sure, you were desperate for physical contact with ANYONE, so it's only natural that it might be a companion that you felt so close to anyway, right? He didn't push you away from him because he hated you, he pushed HIMSELF away from you because he was feeling things just as strongly and he was just as scared as you were about what you were both feeling.

Remember that other companion you had that would masturbate after he thought you had gone to sleep? Yeah, that was pretty interesting, wasn't it, and it made you aroused, didn't it? You might want to take a little closer look at your attractions because they are not going to go away. In fact, they are going to get stronger with time.

The reason I've contacted you is not just to tell you about things that you already know, it's to help you put a little perspective on them and to also warn you about a few things in the immediate future. You have some stuff coming up that you are not going to want to miss! Or mess up.

First off, I know you don't have much money, but scrape together what you can and go buy a few shares of stock in a little company called Apple. Just do it.

Next semester you are going to meet a new roommate who is going to have a profound effect on your life. He is also an RM and you will like him from the moment you meet him. He's a lot like us. One night he will be telling you a story from his mission and you will be laughing so hard that you will think you are having a heart attack - seriously. It's not really a heart attack, but I want you to recognize who he is, because before the spring term, he will ask to move into the same room as you and you will be so happy about it. As the two of you become closer, you'll start to realize that a lot of your world revolves around him and that you can't imagine your life without having him around. This is a very crucial time for you because you are going to need to make some decisions soon. I know, I remember making them, and I made them under some of the same false impressions that you are thinking very strongly right now. I want to try to take away those false impressions and help you make those decisions based on the truths that I have learned since then.

You are trying so hard NOT to think about the possibility that you are more attracted to guys than girls, and you're also working very hard to pray, fast, and live the gospel truths so that God will change your heart and take away those evil desires. Here is my main message, the one take-away from this entire time-travel project: I am here to tell you that those desires are never going to go away, no matter what you do about them. Trust me, I tried. I did everything I could possibly imagine to kill, starve, attack, fight, bury, hate, fast and pray away those feelings. In fact, 25 years later they are as strong as ever and, honestly, getting stronger as the years go by. I've lived my life by the book, followed every rule, fulfilled every calling and assignment, loved a wife and children more than I ever thought possible, and I'm here to tell you, there is still a hollow spot inside of me waiting to be filled by another man. And it hurts. It hurts like hell.

It hurts all the more because you are going to push him away. In about 8 months, you will be enjoying both the warm summer and the fact that he doesn't seem to mind being barely clothed around you. You will sneak a few peaks at him and he will realize what is happening but he won't do anything about it then. A few days later he will "fall asleep" without his clothes on and you will discover him in the darkness of your shared room. You will be so overwhelmed by your feelings that your legs will feel weak and you won't even realize that you have sat down on his bed. While looking at him in the near darkness with rapt wonder, he will slowly touch your hand, lift it up, and bring it over to touch him. Dude, you are going to feel like you are on fire, first because he is so damn sexy, and second because of the wonderful and beautiful things that you and he will do together. 

Would you please do me a favor and slow down and enjoy these fleeting moments with him for a little while longer? I have looked back on these precious memories hundreds of times in my life and, while I have a few regrets, not one of them is about them happening. One regret I do have is that I didn't relax and enjoy these brief but intense experiences more. They were so powerful and I know now that we will never have these first-time feelings as strongly with anyone ever again. So live them and feel them and remember them with even more love than I have for them now. The other regret I have is that I wish I had kissed him. Just... just do it. You know you want to, and he wants you to, and you will always wish that you had. Trust me, you will. 

Sadly, soon enough you are going to think you are being consumed in the fires of mormon hell. You are both going to promise to never let it happen again, but even so, you and he will get together several more times because, although you both know that you are trying to resist, after a few weeks you will ache for him and he will want you just as much and neither of you can resist the other. So in order to resist temptation, you are going to make a hard decision. If you do the same thing I did, you are going to move to a different apartment complex in another part of Provo. You are going to say that it is because you want to be closer to school, but we both know the truth is that you are running away from him as fast as you can.

I know, you think that you are doing the right thing because you are trying to resist him. And in fact, you are doing the thing that the church is telling you to do. But I am here to tell you that you are going to regret this decision for your entire life. Even with the good things that you are trying to do, and that you will do, you will look back on this time with longing, wishing that you had made a different choice for both you and him. 

However, if you decide to do the same thing I did, I can understand what you are thinking because I was there. You are thinking that you can resist, that God can change your heart, and that if you are just righteous enough, God will make you a "normal" man who desires to be a husband and father with one of His daughters. After all, this is what the church is telling you. You want to believe it so much. You are praying and pleading and counting on it. You are willing to bet your life on it being true. Literally. But there is one tragic fault in your logic. It's. Not. True. 

In a few years, you are going to meet a girl and you will realize that she is finally the one. You will know almost as soon as you meet her, because she is nearly everything you ever hoped for in an eternal companion. There are even things about her that are perfect for you and you don't even know them yet. You will prepare yourself to take her to the temple and you will be worthy to do so. By this time, you will have long since talked with your bishop and made yourself pure and clean. But there is one more crucial thing that you need to do before she commits to marry you. It is something that I should have done but didn't and I have regretted it for many years. 

You need to talk to her about your same-sex attraction. I know that you think it will not be a problem, it is history, and you will never have to worry about it again. But you need to talk to her about it anyway. Trust me, you do. 

First, because it' s not really gone. It never will be. You are rationalizing the idea of NOT telling her because you believe that this will not be an issue that you will ever have to reveal as a part of you. You are praying that God will change you - that He will take away your desires and replace them with accepted and righteous ones. But the actual truth is both more logical and, at the same time, almost unbelievable to your innocent mormon self - the person that you are is the person you are going to stay - and if you pretend that this part of you does not exist, then you are hiding a piece of your heart from her that you will have to keep hidden forever. However, like an unseen thorn, it will grow and it will pain you, and her, and your family life, because of your selfish pride and naive mormon fantasies. 

Second, because you will need her help. If, after all this information, you are still considering an attempt at a lifetime of complete self-denial, please let me give you one more warning. In a few years, as the ease of access to information and technology becomes widely available, the opportunity to access pornography of every possible imagined type (and some you can't possibly imagine) will literally be available to you, for free, 24 hours a day, at your fingertips, on your computer and on your phone in your pocket. Just at the time that you will find your desire waning for your wife (and it quickly will), your deeper hidden desires will be awakening and resurfacing, and your ability to access other people with similar desires will also increase. If you expect to maintain your fictitious situation, you will need her help, because you will not have the stamina to do it on your own. If you are hidden from her, you will find yourself more exposed and vulnerable because of your pride. You will NOT be able to do it without her assistance.

Third and lastly, because later in life the topic of same sex attraction will come up in your family and she will speak of homosexuals with such vicious hatred that it will cut you to the core, and since you did not talk about this topic previously, you will not be able to share it with her later and it will become a emotional chasm between the two of you in your marriage. She will not even know how you feel about this, but it will hurt you so deeply that you will be unable to talk about it.

Sadly, there's a good chance that if you talk to her about this, she will not marry you. And perhaps that's a good thing, because there may be someone else out there who is ready to accept this beautiful part of you as well as all the other wonderful parts. I don't know, I didn't go down that path so I can't tell you about that future. But I do hope to save you from a few regrets in my world.

Whatever you choose, be open about it. Don't choose hiding. It may feel like the right thing at the time, but it hurts. A lot. Forever.

I know I have said a few harsh things about your future. If I had heard them when I was your age, I'm not sure I would have believed them. It has taken me a long time to learn that I should have been more true to my inner voice - the one inside that is telling us which way to go. You see, I actually believed that listening to the teachings of the church could replace my inner voice, and the times when I was deciding between what the church told me to do and what my inner voice told me to do, I always chose to follow the church. But I was wrong. I wish I had listened to my heart more often and more carefully. I think it was trying to tell me what was right FOR ME, not just what is right for everyone. It is a hard voice to find and follow, but I think it is worth it and I wish I had learned this a long time ago.

I am going to try and keep this time portal open as long as possible, so if you have any questions I will try to answer them. I'm not sure how long I can do that or how much I can tell you - after all, if you change my past, who knows what will become of me in the future, time paradox and all. 

Hey, guess what!? You will not believe this. In my time, it is completely legal for gay couples to be married in 14 states! Guess which state legalized gay marriage first? You will never guess, not in a million years! Massachusetts!

Take care of yourself, or myself, or whatever. You have a lot of life ahead, but trust me, it goes by too fast. 

You are a much better person than you think you are. 

Love you! Me

PS: Remember that guy in high school, concert choir, junior year, that we had the total crush on? No, not the tall, dark one, (swoon, I wish), no, the tight little blonde, yeah, him. He got home from his mission a few months before us and I think you've seen him on campus a couple of times, right? Or, you're about to, I'm can't remember which ... anyway, guess what? ... ... ... Yep. ... I know, right? Who knew?! So, in about a year he is going to come out to his family and it's going to be a HUGE deal and they are going to totally reject him and he is REALLY going to need a friend.

Go. Be. That. Friend. 

Seriously. You might save his life.

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

A Collection of Short Messages

It's crazy to think that it's been over a year since I started this blog. This past year has been a completely wild ride. I've learned a lot, experienced much, and grown quite a bit. I've gone through all sorts of phases and felt the entire range of emotions. It's been terrifying, freeing, excruciating, and incredibly challenging. I've experienced my darkest hours in the past year. I've felt entirely alone, misunderstood, and bitter. I've also gained some very terrific friendships and felt more valued, appreciated and supported than I have in a long while. After going through a year of hellishness I feel that I am finally starting to arrive somewhere. What that "somewhere" is exactly I'm not sure, I just know that I've felt more peace in the last few weeks than I have for a very long time.

There was a time when I used this blog to connect with other bloggers. I also used it primarily as a way to process through my experiences of being a married gay Mormon. Being able to just freely write anonymously was very therapeutic for me. However, these days I don't feel much need for anonymity. I'm out to many of the people that read this. I've found Facebook groups and real-life conversations with friends to be a place where I can be truly authentic and take more ownership for what I say and share. It feels good to have found such spaces and its truly a blessing to have such supportive friends. Because I'd like to still use this blog as a record of my thoughts and experiences, I would like to include some of my comments and messages that I've written to others recently. This is going to seem really disjointed, but oh well.

As I've grappled with finding true authenticity I've tried many different avenues. I met many great people through North Star that are in my very same situation, and it is great to have them to sympathize with. However, I'm not a true-believing Mormon and I've been frustrated with some of my interactions there because I'm turned into some sort of project. I don't want people to try to change me and I don't appreciate judgment when I don't conform. So, I tried out Affirmation by coming to the conference, and I'm really glad I did. Other than [blogger at In Search of Acceptance] I didn't meet anyone else that is married to a woman, but I did meet so many real, loving, and courageous people. It was extremely refreshing.

At the conference I was reminded that I am worthy of love. Sure, my marriage may not have the ideals when it comes to physical and romantic love, but it does have love. A lot of it. I have an incredible wife who is very accepting and is willing to fight for me. We've gone through some really challenging times, (this past year has been the refining fires of hell) but recently I have been rewarded with precious moments of peace and fulfillment. At the conference I felt reassured that things will be okay and that I am on the path that God intends me to be on.


I'm feeling like I've hit a milestone in my process. I'm letting go of a lot of bitterness toward the church. At conference I felt the Spirit. Sadly that's something I haven't felt in a while. I feel a lot of peace about my marriage and somehow know that things will work out for us.It was so great to be with so many awesome and courageous people. People who accept you as you are and don't judge or try to change you.My wife was really happy about my noticeable change in perspective. She said I can go to an affirmation conference every weekend.


Even though a gay relationship would likely be more sexually fulfilling for me, I'm trying not to make that a focus in my life. I'm realizing that I really do have something special with Anna that is worth working on and developing. I'm trying to take ownership of my happiness and not blame it on my situation. I could be just as unhappy in a gay relationship. Not only that, but I'd have all sorts of new trials to deal with, like loosing the respect and support of family, being a single divorced dad, and the struggles of co-parenting.I really just want peace in my life and to get to some solid ground. I don't have to be a true believing Mormon to make my marriage work, and I can still find healthy ways to express my gay identity. And I hope I don't have to vacillate a  dozen more times before settling on a decision.


I have many friends that are pursuing same-sex relationships, and I am happy for their happiness. Perhaps it does leave me with some jealousy. I still have to work through why I feel that way, but any success in their relationship shouldn't be a threat to my marriage, and success in my marriage shouldn't be seen as a way to invalidate their chosen path. I have my reasons for staying married, and they have their reasons for choosing otherwise. Both our decisions ought to be respected. Something I've had to eventually accept was that I could be very happy in a relationship with a man. I've also accepted that I can be very happy in my marriage. My beliefs have evolved such that I see nothing wrong morally with same-sex relationships. Looking at how much "truth" has changed over time, I have a hard time believing that all laws are irrevocable. The phrase "wickedness never was happiness" can be subjective, because how do we define wickedness? Is wickedness anything contrary to the laws of God? Which laws? If I drink coffee does that make me wicked? According to that saying all of us would be unhappy because all of us sin and therefore are wicked.

What the church says about homosexuality isn't what keeps me from leaving my wife for a man, and I don't base other's happiness on their adherence to the Church's laws. I base my decision to stay married off of my own value system which is not entirely the same as the church's values. I can only assume that my friends that are dating other men are basing their decision to do so based on their own value systems. There's a myriad of reasons why either of us could be unhappy or unsuccessful in our life choices, so it doesn't seem right to presume that any failures are completely due to a non-adherence to a value system that is not theirs.

This is a realization that I've recently come to. It is awesome and freeing. Its taking ownership of my own happiness instead of expecting happiness just because of adherence to any particular law.


Of course there are many appealing things about being married to a woman. You get the "traditional family," kids that are biologically both yours (hopefully), and you get the social and religious approval of your relationship. It's a good life. There are many challenges that being gay presents in such a relationship. There's sexual and emotional dissonance and frustration. Even before we were married my wife told me that she felt I wasn't as into the relationship as she was. And yes I still desire to be with men. It's hard at times, but she's patient with me and I try to be patient and understanding with her. In the past 6 months or so she's become willing to give me a bit of independence so that I can develop friendships with other gay men and that has been very fulfilling for me. Whatever you do don't remain in the church or get married just to keep up a charade. I did that for too long and it wears you down. It is better to choose the path of authenticity. For most gay men that happens to be in a relationship with another man, however, I believe there is authenticity to be found in a mixed orientation marriage as well.

And let me add that if you did decide to go the mixed-orientation marriage route it should be something that you both do deliberately without pressure from family or church. You would need to take time to make sure you're emotionally mature enough to work through the difficulties that may come. It would take a lot of open communication about how you'll approach those aspects of your marriage so you are on the same page from the beginning. Of course, all these things could be said of any typical straight marriage. My wife and I got married really young (less than a year off my mission). I was extremely naive about my attractions and we were far from ready to deal with the challenges of my sexual orientation. It has almost cost us our marriage, but we have been doing our best to adapt and grow together despite the challenges.


I don't believe in the church. But it believes in me. There are good people there who have been very kind to me and my family. I appreciate the good environment that it provides. My kids need some sort of structured belief, and having that community to help me raise them is very valuable. I get bitter and annoyed at times and sometimes it is best for me to skip a Sunday or just attend Sacrament meeting, but there's always something that draws me back in (even if that something is my wife sweetly nagging me to go). I negotiate my relationship with the church on my own terms. Some teachings I completely ignore, while others I cherish. My bishop is completely understanding and on board with where I'm at. He doesn't push me to get a temple recommend or serve in a way that I'm uncomfortable with. I appreciate being able to help out in my calling as an Elder's Quorum teacher. It gives me a sense of being able to make a difference in the ward environment. I like being able to challenge people's deeply rooted notions and help them see there is another way of looking at things.


In reading through these messages and comments I get the sense that progress is being made in my life, and that is so relieving. I've felt very stuck for a long while. Yeah, I am gay and married to a woman and I may always be conflicted in some way because of that. I will probably continue to experience confusion and frustration over my involvement with Mormonism, but I am accepting that all these aspects are a part of who I am and ought to be embraced rather than have one or more of them completely eradicated from my life. I feel like I've grown a lot emotionally and become much more self-aware in the past year. I still have a lot of ground to cover, and a lot of maturing to do. Even though I'm married with two kids I still act impulsively and inappropriately at times like a twenty-something tends to do. I've made a lot of mistakes in the past year. The good thing is that I'm learning a lot from those mistakes. And hopefully one day I'll come out the other end of this a much better and happier person.

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

A Poem I Wrote


At the edge of the schoolyard, content to play with few
In the far right field, or sprinting the margins of the court
I stood outside the huddled mass of children
their quiet whispers filling me with shame
knowing that a part of me is different from the rest

Far away in a tiny village at a jungle's edge
with my band of brothers on both sides
I cast off my awkwardness and discovered my essence
while sharing God's fullness with a book
giving of myself that for a time made me feel complete

I told her that I loved her, that together we'd always be
But something eery stirred within me
I knew a strange small piece was missing from my core
Confusion racked my being
So at the edge of her driveway I left her standing sobbing

But inside all along
Those yearnings burned strong
And in my heart did I pray
God, make me anything but gay

So young and eager to fill my gaping hole, another entered my life
She, I was determined would make me feel whole
In the center of the room we knelt
with mirrors on both sides to symbolize
an endless promise we made; trusting in God's blessing

It wasn't long after that I cowered in the corner
my heart breaking, body shaking
The secret I thought was buried deep
lay exposed to both our horror
It cannot be what comprises me; denying my own nature

In the center of the circle, cradled in our arms
a piece of me laid sweetly sleeping
I sent a prayer heavenward with trust in Him above
This small babe filled a portion of my gaping hole
My heart resolved to forever cherish and guard him

But inside all along
Those yearnings burned strong
And in my heart did I pray
God, make me anything but gay

Slowly at first, then more each day my heart grew colder
That hollowness I'd tried for so long to deny
was feverishly eating away at my core
Those beliefs I once treasured were causing such angst
that with contempt I hurled them; they shattered on the floor

Feeling scalded by the only faith I knew
I grasped for belonging among the margins
Relief encompassed me as I found others
with hearts oriented in a similar manner
I ceased to loathe that part of me; my truth I did accept

In my haste for real completeness
I made my way to the inviting haven
With arms outstretched only a few steps away
I then glanced down to my terror and saw my ruptured gash
Another large piece of me had been abandoned at the gate

But inside all along
Those yearnings burned strong
And in my heart did I pray
God, make me anything but gay

Feeling faint and remorseful yet with pain I did retreat
I gathered myself up, clutching my torn pieces
Consigned to live a life split between two worlds
Building barriers about; it's the isolation I thought I deserved
Striving to keep my battered soul from being further shredded

How can I know the truth, and with it be set free?
I'm left to long for wholeness while living on the fray
How do I live without denying part of me
For with all God's blessed me with, He also made me gay?