This week I’m gonna take a little time and share a Bowie story and the lessons that I’ve learned with you.
I know I’ve talked a lot about finding ways to live authentically, building confidence in being yourself regardless of what others may think and making choices in your life that are just for you.
It’s taken my whole life so far to learn from my own experiences to come to many of these conclusions.
I experienced my first homophobic slur when I was 8 years old, from a kid I went to school with. They called me a dyke because I enjoyed playing sports and was good at it.
At the time, I didn’t know what a dyke was or that they were being homophobic.
But, what I did learn was that these types of comments were going to quickly become a normal experience for me during my years in school.
I didn’t let the words of these people stop me from playing sports, dressing the way that I wanted or expressing myself the way I wanted.
When I finally finished high school and ventured out into the world as a young adult, I thought that I’d be free from the nasty and homophobic comments my peers had spent years throwing at me.
Turns out living in a conservative small town in regional Queensland, that there were more homophobes around than I could have imagined and they couldn’t wait to target me it seemed.
Again, I didn’t let this stop me. I came out when I was 18 years old and lived openly as a queer person. I’d realised through my years in school that there are always going to be people that won’t like what I’m doing in your life.
What I wasn’t going to do was allow them to make me change who I was. Instead, I made it a habit to make decisions that helped me feel happiest. Regardless of what others said about me.
This wasn’t always easy and I have had many experiences of verbal and physical abuse from strangers because of my choice of lifestyle.
But ultimately, all this showed me was that these people were the ones with the issues, not me.
I love living as a queer person and wouldn’t change myself or my life for anything.
Every time I made a choice that made me feel happier or more affirmed in who I was, I knew I was doing the right things.
This isn’t to say that I was always able to do this and that I didn’t make mistakes along the way. I made a lot of them and they have led me to be institutions where I’ve felt trapped and hopeless.
Through all of that though, I’ve eventually been able to always come back to a single question that I could ask myself that helped me live authentically.
This question was, what do I really want?
Then I’d allow myself time to find find the answer. The brutally honest truth, that I had at times been avoiding.
Because when we’re truly honest with ourselves, it can lead to us making some big changes in our lives that can be scary, uncomfortable and hard.
But long term these hard decisions and experiences can teach us the most and lead us to being able to be happier in ourselves and the life we may be living.
When we can be truthful with ourselves, we give ourselves power. We build our self confidence and trust in ourselves. When we have that trust, there’s nothing we can face and nothing we can’t do.
If you’re enjoying the show and know other folks that may find some benefit in having a listen, I’d be so grateful if you shared it with them or anywhere else where you think that it could help someone.