Agreeing to Disagree

I'm growing tired of having to defend my beliefs in talking with friends. Friend, I mean-- in talking with friend. The same thing happened back in May. I heard statements like, "For some people, the gospel isn't the right answer; other paths in life are better for them," or, "It's better to gain experience through sinning than to remain in innocence," coming from some of my closest friends. And I had to defend the beliefs that I thought were pretty standard among Mormons. Maybe I attract more liberal types, but it just seems like Mohos are more liberal than they need to be.

I had a break for a few months, but now I'm back to the endless defending. I find it exhausting to have to defend my belief that, for example, gay dating is against the standards of the Church or that it's okay to control how we're influenced by choosing friends wisely. I mean, I can take small doses of liberal viewpoints about the Church and its doctrine through blogs. But it's sad when the people I trust and am around most just seem to be on the other team so much.

That's not to say I don't flip-flop in my views fairly often. In the course of a day, depending on my experiences, I may go from thinking that a certain amount of physical intimacy with a guy is okay to being certain that I can go the remaining 60 years of my life without anyone else.

One of the reasons I don't want to deal with it is that I sometimes am actually influenced by the other side. That's not something I want happening right now. When I find something to criticize about the Church, it only makes me unhappier in the end.

So I face several decisions about how to handle the friend situation. I have to act carefully because my course of action in May led to a good friend going on a rampage of hate, turning several others against me. I'd like to think that this time I can find a happy middle ground-- some sort of relationship where we're simply friends with differences in doctrinal belief. Yeah, I know, people create such friendships every day. But I have little experience in them. And it's disheartening to think that perhaps all of my Moho friendships have to just be safely distant friendships.

I know, at least, that the answer is not to remove myself from the Moho world. It's nonsense to think I could go back into the closet (the partial amount I've come out of it) and be perfectly happy. I need to figure out how to be my complete self in the place that I am, and to be fine with it; and perhaps how to let other people be themselves, and to be fine with that too.

...And Britney's new album, which leaked tonight, is bound to do well!

Nothing in Particular

Visiting my blog tonight, I was pleasantly surprised to see a comment on the last post asking why I don't write anymore. It's your lucky day, anonymous, because I've decided to finally just write something. I've been wanting to post for several weeks but always put it off, like it's some sort of paper for school. Maybe all the talk of procrastination in General Conference had some small effect. Wait, no... I'm supposed to be writing two papers for tomorrow but am up until 3:00 blogging instead.

I don't really know what to talk about, but I think it'll be good to just let some things out before I go crazy. It may be too late.

There are a lot of good things about life. Living with (Moho) friends is super. It's the first time I've lived with actual friends at school, so home is a relaxed atmosphere rather than a lonely trap full of awkward silences. And I can completely be myself with no fears. If I want to watch a review of red carpet fashions, I do it. If I feel like listening to Britney's new song, I do it.

Hmm, I'm having trouble thinking of other good things. School is fine-- I'm pretty much keeping up as much as I need to and enjoying having every other day off. I'm on a full tuition scholarship and just remembered that I had mentioned my homosexuality on the scholarship application. That means either that they didn't read it or that God doesn't hate gays! I'm still looking for a job but not really LOOKING for a job, you know? Sometimes I feel like I want to go volunteer somewhere but I really need to earn money to pay my dad back for my Japan program and at least partially for my new Scion xD.

I was trying to update my Facebook profile tonight and it annoyed me how difficult it is. I spent forever trying to find a photo of me that I didn't hate. Then I stared at the "Interests" and "Activities" sections, trying to think of anything I could put. It made me kind of realize that not much else is happening in my life. I'm not someone who gets bored (at least not when I'm by myself), but there's not much I could say I'm doing.

In some ways, I feel like I'm changing back into a kind of pre-April me, or at least a combination of pre-April me with a newer me. I feel like I've kind of fallen out of the happy Moho world I was living in a few months ago. I realize that spring/summer was spring/summer and frequent activities aren't too feasible anymore, but outside of my roommates, I rarely see anyone. I never had very close friendships with most people, but being in the same place with them helped me feel like I belonged. I recognize that it's largely my fault. I'm never good at initiating things or doing my part to keep friendships going strong, but it's still sad to see the relationships fade. I enjoy the meetings at the Matis home every month, but even there my inability to mingle or talk to new people gets exposed and I find myself praying that those I came with will let me get away.

It all begins to feel like the time before April, when I'd occasionally hit patches of despair and wonder why things had to be so difficult. Admittedly, some of the reasons why I'm finding things difficult again have changed slightly. Before, it was more of a "I'm lonely and I hurt" feeling. But last week I was walking to my first class and very nearly began crying because I felt like I wasn't allowed to be really happy, to be in a fulfilling relationship. I think all of the Sunstone sessions I've been listening to have been affecting me strangely. I'm pretty conservative still, though!

I guess I don't mind too much that I'm reverting to pre-April mode, because back then I was pretty good at relying on the Lord for everything. My prayers were always full of heartfelt pleading, and I had reached the point where I found myself thanking Heavenly Father for the trial. Between the tough times, I felt like was able to "make it". More recently, not only has the pleading been reduced, I doubt I even gave much thought to whether I was "making it" or not.

I don't think I have sufficient reason to return to the Counseling Center yet, but I'm looking forward to talking to my bishop and seeing what happens. I've never told a bishop anything before.

Good books, great music, a few wonderful friends, downloaded movies, sleeping in, haircuts, good cologne, Robert Millet's Institute lessons, Spider Solitaire, Goldfish crackers, new car smell, Halloween costume ideas, inside jokes, Heroes, hugs-- those are the things that make everything okay. Now I'd better get to my homework.