Taking My Life Back, Year One

 It’s after 2 am. I’m sitting on the porch in the dark, I’m listening to the crickets and the far-off traffic echoing up the hill from I-15. After reaching into the low-hundreds, today, a soft breeze is making the quiet of this normally-clamorous house all the more relaxing.

I ‘came out,’ to your overwhelming love and support, a year ago, and I haven’t looked back. You stayed!! Right here by my side; you came along for the ride and you’ve been a part of something extraordinary (at least, it’s been that way, for me). 

Sitting here in this blissful quiet, I’m thinking back, and I’m feeling pretty grateful to all of you; (while, simultaneously, mourning the passing of my brother-in-law, Chuck Dilas, who has been a steady (albeit, long-distant) constant in my life, for nearly 36 (??) years). Chuck’s passing has hit me a lot harder than I imagined it would, and it’s just sinking in, really, that he’s gone from this life… How incredibly hard it must be for my sister, then; she’s lost her soulmate, her teen hero and sweetheart, left to push forward without him. 

Chuck was a good man, and I’m going to miss him. But, I’d like to thank him, for taking care of my sister and staying by her side; for loving her and those two boys (and their grand babies). And, thank you, also – for leaving us with some of the most beautiful homes, barns, decks, patios, porches, flower-beds, and furniture, on the planet. Thanks, for all of the laughs and good times (and, the bad ones, as well) that you have left with us – and, for all of that good reefer, back in the day, man! ***takes a toke*** RIP Chuck…

Yeah… I’ve endured my share of painfull losses over the past year, but I’ve gained so much more! I can look in the mirror without shame or doubt. I can answer questions, truthfully, with no regrets! Hell – it’s even getting easier to just downright volunteer it, so as to be honest from the very start. “Hi! I’m Eric. I’m gay. Problem..? Good – ‘Cause, fuck you, if you had one!” 

It’s been a terrific year; it’s been an awful year… But, I’m still standin’.  And, I’m most-thankful, for your standing here with me. Your continued understanding and outpourings of support are absolutely awesome!!

There are a couple of people I’d like to thank, by name: my daughter, Erica; my sisters, Terri and Dawn; my second-cousin, Michael Cone; and…thank you, to all of those folks my ‘blog heard ’round the world’ inspired, gaining the courage to be themselves, by taking the time to read it. Good on ya!

For those of you who’ve joined me over the year (and, might be, only-now, figuring it out) – I’m Eric. I’m gay. Problem..? Good…

I’m still the same guy I was, before you started reading this; I’m just that much-more fabulous… 😉

Thanks, to all of you.

Eric

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