Monday, March 23, 2009

Where's Waldo? Probably in bed... (Updated w/video)

Maybe if I wore a red-and-white striped sweater you could have found me this weekend. It (and I) was a bit of a blur.

Saturday, I don't even remember much about what I did other than laundry, grocery shopping, and a trip to Rockville with the hubs . Oh, and I did a little shopping this weekend for a fabulous new shower curtain which will go perfectly with the French Vanilla shade I'm going to paint the master bath.

Sunday was quite another story. I was booked solid, and when I wasn't busy, I was asleep. It reminds me of the stories Pete had about his Marine Corps days. "I learned to grab sleep wherever and whenever I could get it," he tells me, "including curled up on my foot locker!"

It started out with a trip to my group at church. I was really afraid of how they would react, and I was fully prepared that it might be the last session I attended. In my head, I imagined them gasping, ooh-ing, aah-ing, and ahem-ing. I imagined their discomfort being so visible as to leave me no choice but to leave them in peace. Instead, it was anti-climactic when I finally, during my turn to share, said, "...and maybe you won't love me anymore after I say this, but I'm gay and it's just the way it is. God and I have had a talk about it and He wants me to stop beating myself up for being just who He made me to be." Silence. A few nods. And then we moved onto the next person.

I could hear myself take a deep breath. Until then I hadn't realized I was holding it. No one reacted. But at the end, when I had to leave a half hour early, they each rose and came to me, hugging me tightly and saying, "We love you. I love you. Nothing's changed."

I had tears in my eyes. "You girls are awesome," I said. When I left my heart was infinitely lighter and happier. I was smiling, and I felt a huge weight had been lifted from me.

The day was far from over, though. I went home and picked up the guys who had gotten up early and dressed appropriately for a breakfast at the country club. No, we don't belong to it, but we were going for a fund-raiser for Kids Are Heroes. A friend, who runs Wags for Hope and also runs this organization with his 10-year-old daughter MaryMargaret, had said it looked like the turnout would be light, and he had some very talented young people ready to entertain us. The trio who would be performing as the main act are local celebrities and all have quite lengthy CV's to their names. Unfortunately the link is down that provided all the names of the performers, but Brian Kim was the one whom I remember. He is an accomplished violinist who blew me away as part of the trio. He has been invited to play with several major local symphonies. Imagine what life is going to be like for these kids! They already have a great talent and are well on their way to careers in orchestras and schools around the world! And they took the time to come and play at a benefit to raise money for children at the Children's Medical Center in DC, for MP3 players that they can listen to while having scary procedures done. We were glad we could be there to contribute and enjoy some beautiful, live classical music.

After that, I promptly passed out in my bed for 45 minutes before getting up, running a brush through my hair, and heading off to school. I was meeting up with one of my groups for our project that involves designing a new college course. Three of the five of us showed up, and we got a ton of work done. We managed, in 2.5 hours, to get most of the project completed. The other two will just have to fill in where they can. They were invited (isn't this how it always is with group projects? Some do all the work and others just coast in?).

After we were done, we were packing up and were accosted by a couple of undergrads from the psych department who were conducting an experiment. We flipped a coin to see whether we were in the control group or in the experiment group. I ended up in the experiment group. I went into a room, read the instructions, picked up a pack of Crayolas and a picture to color and sat down with that for 15 minutes. I was amazed at how much I've missed selecting just the right crayon for the job and doing all the shading and filling in. My picture was of three butterflies and irises, so as you can imagine, I got colorful with it!

The questionnaire I filled out at the end was to assess my mood after spending 15 minutes coloring. It was no surprise to me that I had gone from full-bore working mode to calm and relaxed. I suppose I need to go pick up some crayons this afternoon....

When I got home, I had planned to get a few more things done around the house. After all, my weekend was running out! But I found my way back upstairs to my bed and slept through dinner. I considered changing clothes and staying in bed until this morning, but I managed to find my way to the kitchen at one point to enjoy the leftovers of the wonderful dinner my son had made. He's a gem!

Then we watched "The United States of Tara" (love that show!!!) and it was back to bed again. I feel more rested today than I have in weeks, so I suppose I needed it.

Now you know where Waldo was yesterday. Who knows? I may actually be able to pop over to your blogs today!

By the way, thanks for all the kind comments and feedback on my hair. I certainly feel 20 years younger having colored it. Growing older is mandatory; looking older is optional!

Peace - D

I leave you with a video of some of the performances from yesterday....

[photo credit]
[Photo of the Bransa Trio, courtesy of]


Mike Golch said...

great posting.

Sink said...

Big sigh of relief. So glad the church group went well...still a safe and nurturing place...which you well deserve.

Mental P Mama said...

I had a feeling your church group would be just like that. So, so happy for you. And now? I am off to buy a box of crayons. I'm not kidding. xoxo, Lauren

Moannie said...

I knew it!!! And am so happy for you. I could not believe that those who proffess to love God could treat you any other way than with compassion and understanding. No wonder you slept so have probably been holding your breath since you first made your courageous decision.

Now you will go from strength to strength...and three cheers for your fine son WHO CAN COOK!!!

septembermom said...

You have been busy! Glad that all went went with the church group. Providing classical music to those patients at the Children's Medical Center is a wonderful idea. Enjoy your day!

Jeni said...

It is indeed so sad -and very tiresome too -if we encounter a church group that isn't exactly what we think such a group should be, especially in the acceptance of others, regardless of their "stripes." But boy, really did make MY heart sing to hear that yours was quite open and accepting -which is as it SHOULD be for all! Just releived, very much so, that things went this well. And to have a son who can cook -now that's fantastic too, isn't it?

Akelamalu said...

Gosh no wonder you needed to sleep!

I'm so happy for your that your church group were accepting. If they hadn't been you would have been right to say "stuff you" and walk away.

Syd said...

I remember coloring and having that big box of crayons. It is a relaxing thing. Good memories.

Maggie May said...

I just knew that they would be OK with you. If someone could change their mind after liking you before, then they wouldn't be worth bothering about.
BTW .... watched your video and I do like your hair! Also nice to hear your voice!

Daryl said...

No surprise to me that your group accepted you .. hon, you are who you are not who you want to be with/love ... its like you worrying they wont like your new hair color .. that and your sexual preference are frosting on the cake that is you!

And I get the same relaxation when I am taking photos ...

lakeviewer said...

I'm happy for you. Having your church friends accept you for who you are must feel great. Having your family support, and feed you dinner when you're tired, wonderful. Looking good and younger and feeling great with a new hair cut, priceless.

Jay said...

HOORAY!! I'm so glad that you had the courage to come out and be open with your church group! And even happier that they responded so well to your news. You must feel such a sense of relief and peace, especially after such an intense weekend. I wish I could hug you too!

So interesting about the colouring! Maybe I need to get myself the 'Pirates of the Caribbean' activity book? LOL!

Love the 'looking older is optional'! Ain't that the truth! ;)

the walking man said...

ain't courage grand? ain't music courageous!

ConverseMomma said...

Oh sweetie, I am so, so happy for you. Wow!

And, btw, I love the hair color. Sorry I was late to the party in telling you that.

TSannie said...

I am in awe of your honesty. Thank you, once again for sharing your life with us.

® ♫ The Brit ♪ ® said...

Hi D,
I am so, so happy for you! So happy that you found the courage to go back there, face everybody and show them the real you! It is so fantastic that they accepted you! contrary to what you were expecting!
I can really relate to you making this decision and how you saiud that you felt a huge weight was lifted off of your shoulders! I felt the very same way when I told my family and close friends... I had spent months worrying if they would accept me, if they would still remain my friends, if they would be shocked and start hating me... but all my family and friends also accepted me with open arms and also said that nothing had changed and that I was still the same funny, loving, caring person who I had always been, and I am 100% certain that all your friends also think the very same thing about you!
Sometimes we worry and worry for no reason eh?! - imagining scenarios in our heads and being afraid to wear our hearts on our sleeves! I am such an expert at imagining those scenarios and playing a situation over and over in my head before I have even gone through it! I'm going to try to change in that way as I feel it brings unnecessary stress!
So happy for you D! You've got a new life, a new wonderful hair colour, new found openess and acceptance and you're a wonderful woman and role model!
Huge Hugs Dear Friend!
Donnie XXX

Hilary said...

I'm glad for you, and not surprised. I remember a friend of mine going through the exact same worry and finding that she was totally accepted as is. Good people don't pass judgment for no good reason. :)

Not Afraid to Use It said...

The mp3 players for scary procedures? What an amazing idea! I am so glad you had such a fruitful and fulfilling weekend!