It’s ok

When you finally say those six scary words 
Quietly, out Loud
To your best friend
As you lie on your back
In the dark,
Your fear is a presence
“I think I might be gay”
I want to wrap you in my love
Give to you
The strength of my heart
And say,
“It’s ok”
When you’re terrified of losing your family,
Friends and Life
And the sentencing of your Soul
To eternal hell
Makes you cut your own skin
To feel a separate, easier pain,
As a way to face your fears
I want to pull you behind me
Protect your heart
As a bear guards her cubs
And say,
“It’s ok”
When you slosh through the dregs
Of your Religion
Feeling the power of your Faith,
Once unshakeable,
Slip from your grasp
Because you can’t, no, you won’t, lie
About your basic truth
I want to take your trembling hands in mine
Pass to you
The peace of my soul
And simply say,
“Valiant girl, it’s ok”
When you search for a loophole
In the Damnation
Laid out in one verse after another
But find judgment
Instead of Grace
And always more questions
Even the ministers cannot seem to answer
I want to look deep into your clear blue eyes
Cry for you
The tears of absolution
And say,
“Brave seeker, it’s ok”
When you turn to other sources of wisdom
Searching for Peace
Blazing your own beautiful path
To unshakeable truth
And you find solid ground
Among the trees and the poets
Amid the philosophers and stars
I want to lie next to you on the warm summer ground
In the dark
Crying in awe at the grandeur of the universe
And, soft as a whisper, say,
“See? It’s ok”
When you stand your own ground, fast and firm
In your Truth
And you won’t back down
Or accept an inferior brand of love
The scarlet sound of
“I love you anyway”
Because you don’t need Forgiveness for being yourself
I want to cheer for you
Scream myself hoarse
Praising your fierceness, bravery and courage
And say,
“That’s it! It’s ok.”
When you sit with a counselor digging still to
Find your Worth
Leaning into the pain
In search of freedom
From a lifetime of doubt and shame
And you finally say those words, out loud,
“I’m proud of who I am”
I want to sing with a choir of angels
“It is well,
It is well with my soul”
And hear you say,
“I’m ok”
When you look in the mirror on a
Fitting room Wall
And see yourself, Whole
And feel compassion and love
Replacing all the doubt and the shame
And you gently say those words, out loud
Affirming my worth, “I see you”
I want to wrap myself in your love
Finally feel warmth
That heals my broken heart
And I’ll say,
“I’m ok”

Print a copy of this poem here.

Shame is 2 Sizes Too Large

I recently headed to my local JCPenney store to take advantage of their winter clearance sale and snag some new sweaters. 

I thought my current sweaters were simply wearing out and stretched.  I thought their casual shape was just baggy, and I felt uncomfortable wearing them, and I wanted to get some new ones to replace them.  I grabbed my size (an XL) and headed to the ladies dressing room hoping I could dive in without anyone seeing me and telling me I was in the wrong area.

I made it in without incident, but was immediately disappointed: the XL was like a dress.  The sleeves were nearly 8 inches too long and the whole garment just bagged off of me. What the hell?  XL was my size.   

Continue reading “Shame is 2 Sizes Too Large”