Being seen.

Let’s (sort of) talk identity politics, shall we?

By this (of course), I mean I am going to get real self-absorbed for a minute and just like, continue to talk incessantly about myself on my blog.

So! Lately, I have been thinking a lot about visibility. Specifically, about just how complex and complicated things are. How having a complex identity that is so barnacled and buried is something I am trying so hard to bring to the surface. How recently, I am being seen in ways that are absolutely and completely blowing my mind. I’ve been being SEEN, y’all. As a queer man, as a gentleman, as a dandy. To be acknowledged for these things as a positive is sort of blowing me away. I am usually so hurt in that place, afraid to show up in my queerness, in the ways in which I am a fag. A chivalrous butch faggot who loves women (among other things). The breadth of this complex identity, the tip of this particular berg has felt harrowing at best and at worst dangerous to reveal. I have felt ashamed and invisible in partnerships and friendships. I even became convinced (and still sometimes am) that these things about me, were not something that deserved space or nurturing. That these things about me, would eventually be the end of me.

Being single has helped me let these parts out. To sort and clutch and sweat all over myself, to be all of the ways in which I am multi-dimensional in the world, and find out how much I want to be seen as more than JUST. It has taught me how to love the people in my life, and the communities in which I orbit in this more holistic and engaging way. Because, what is better than using positive feedback and giggly affirmations to build up the super positive vibes in your life, I ask you?

Also now, dating is totally reminding me how grateful I am to be noticed and stroked and beamed over in this delicate and dizzying manhood I am building for myself. How much I deserve all of it. How much a big spoon-full of reverence can get me.

Both are excellent for my self-esteem and my woo-y-man-ness (another part of the tender teddy of my identity).

So, I think you should tell me how you swaddle all of your gorgeous complexities in love, folks. Go on and spill it. Personally, I’m planning on burning some candles and crawling into my claw foot bathtub tonight while I read a book on Buddhist meditation and eat chocolate torte.

YEAH, I KNOW.

How the Cowboy ate the cabbage.

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4 thoughts on “Being seen.

  1. so rad. “delicate and dizzying manhood” is my new favorite phrase ever. I love your writing.

    how do I swaddle my complexities in love? gah, good & hard question. I try to acknowledge them, first of all. try to pay attention when they come knocking. then I try to give them a little space, a little protection, while they grow. then … idk. integrate, as much as possible, I guess. I’ll have to chew on that.

  2. Great post, Cass–and funny timing for me. For some reason, today was the day I decided to finally change my “interested in” field on Facebook from blank to “Men and Women.” While I still primarily identify as a gay man, I’ve struggled to recognize/incorporate the slice of me that would prefer to identify as bi or, perhaps more accurately, queer. I’ve generally faced ridicule when I’ve publicly acknowledged that part of myself, even from the friends who are most accepting of me. For that reason, I’ve been reluctant to get in touch with that part of myself. I think the only reason I’ve been able to explore my bi/pansexuality lately is because of my open relationship. Although my marriage is a vital part of my life for which I am very grateful, being polyamorous has allowed me to explore myself in ways that I wouldn’t have been able with Jacob alone.

    Rock that queer power, boo!

    • Jackson! This was such a sweet comment to read. Thank you so much for sharing. I am so glad to hear that you are loving all of those queer parts of yourself, and your relationship with Jacob! You rule and I hope I get to see you so soon! Maybe at B & J’s party next week even?

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