Pull up a chair, get a cup of tea, and enjoy reading the recipes and tidbits of my journey through Life.

Thursday, May 2, 2013

A Little Background

Yesterday's post about my coming out as a Pagan was really the first post about ME as a person.  I usually post about events that occur in my life and leave it at that.  It just never dawned on me that people might want to know about the person behind the screen.  So, I will either entertain you or bore you with a little background on me.

I was born in the Bible Belt of Kentucky, but raised for most of my childhood on the Gulf Coast of Mississippi.  When Biloxi was devastated by Katrina, my heart bled for the place I consider my true hometown.  I am lucky I grew up there and not in Kentucky because I was exposed to any different cultures and people. 

My mom still likes to tell the story of when our neighbor's children came and asked if I wanted to play.  They were African-Americans and I had never seen them before and was a little hesitant to play. My early years spent in the country did not expose me to much diversity.  We ended up being great friends though and played together a lot.  But this just shows how backward I was.

From then on I grew up seeing all these different cultures getting along and it all just seemed normal to me.  I learned that differences didn't matter, we are all still people at the baseline.  Later in my childhood I got to meet some of my mother's friends who were gay and lesbians.  It was not until later that I learned they were because they were normal people.  I have never understood how who someone loves effects someone else...unless they are in love with that person as well, and then that is just a whole nother ball of wax.   But this made it easier for me to accept myself as bisexual at the age of 15, because I grew up knowing some wonderful LGBT people.

Also being away from the Bible Belt with its obligatory church attendance made it easier for me to form my own opinions.  The first five years of my life I was taken to church by my paternal grandparents whenever we stayed the weekend with them.  It was not the horrible experience that some have had, but it was not enjoyable either, especially for a young child on a Sunday morning.  I grew up not really thinking about religion or spirituality and it honestly never entered my head to think about it. 

When we moved back to KY in my 8th grade year, I was in for culture shock!  First, I felt claustrophobic because one whole side of the city was no longer the Gulf of Mexico.  Then all the "what church are you going to?" questions started.  Kinda scary.  Thankfully most people knew my brother (long story) so I wasn't a total outsider.  Anyway, I got to thinking about what I believed and even went to church a few times before realizing that wasn't what I believed.  I drifted for a while and just left things go in the religion department.  I was growing acedemically and personally, making friends, enjoying life as a new teenager. 

My currently spiritual path started in a WaldenBooks at the age of 15.  It was the summer before my junior year of high school and I felt great.  My friends and I were hanging out at the mall (what else do you do in a small town on a weekend?) and being the booklovers we were, we headed for WaldenBooks.  I found one or two  D&D novels I wanted and then stumbled upon a section titled Metaphysical.  Intriqued, I searched through the titles and read the back of a few.  I already knew about horoscopes and such, but Magick was new to me.  I bought True Magick by Amber K, which I still have to this day, and the rest as they say is history.

I have not looked back once and regret nothing I have done or learned.  To regret means I do not appreciate who I am today, and I absolutely love who I am.

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Pagan Coming Out Day -- May 2nd

I came out of the broom closet when I was a junior in high school. Even though I lived in the Bible Belt of Kentucky it never occurred to me NOT to come out, and I never really thought of it as "coming out".  To me it was just being who I was.  This is not tooting my own horn as being brave or anything; if anything it is showing just how naive I was.  I could have endured horrible consequences like loss of friends, tauntings, bullying, etc.  I was lucky that I had a good core group of friends, many of whom were Christian, and most people just blew it off as some weird quirk of mine. 

I guess you would have to understand who I was in high school to understand this last part.  I knew the names of each person in our graduating class, all 275 of us.  I was in AP classes and had all academics the first 3 years of high school, leaving my senior year filled with art electives.  I got along with almost everyone. My boyfriend and I were also kinda infamous for PDA's as well...we even made it into the school paper in the form of a editorial cartoon because of it.  I was not a typical student, let's just say.

Two of my boyfriend's friends were following the Druid path, Josh and Michael.  I have lost touch with Josh, but am still in contact with Michael and I respect him a great deal.  We all had some great debates about spirituality.  But other than these few I was alone on my path.  I do not know if there were more Pagans in my high school that were afraid to come out, or if we really were the only ones.  I would have liked to have an SPA (student pagan association) but that was not to be.  Maybe had I been more mature I could have started one, but that just wasn't me back then.

Tomorrow, May 2nd, is Pagan Coming Out Day.  If you are in the broom closet or out, or just a Pagan supporter, please keep those coming out in your minds as they take this large step.  The color for Pagan Pride is deep purple, so if you have clothing, jewelry, or even a ribbon, please wear it in honor of our brothers and sisters.  Let them know it is perfectly fine to be themselves...