Monday, March 26, 2012

Where I've Been and Where I'm Going

In Lewis Carroll’s timeless classic, Alice in Wonderland, the Cheshire Cat provides some of the most impressive advice (I believe) in literary history.  The passage reads:

"`Cheshire Puss,' [Alice] began, rather timidly, as she did not at all know whether it would like the name: however, it only grinned a little wider. `Come, it's pleased so far,' thought Alice, and she went on.
`Would you tell me, please, which way I ought to go from here?'
`That depends a good deal on where you want to get to,' said the Cat.
`I don't much care where--' said Alice.
`Then it doesn't matter which way you go,' said the Cat.
`--so long as I get SOMEWHERE,' Alice added as an explanation.
`Oh, you're sure to do that,' said the Cat, `if you only walk long enough.'
`But I don't want to go among mad people,' Alice remarked.
`Oh, you can't help that,' said the Cat: `we're all mad here. I'm mad. You're mad.'
`How do you know I'm mad?' said Alice.
`You must be,' said the Cat, `or you wouldn't have come here.'”

As I have read, and re-read (and re-read) this passage, I have come to the conclusion that I am much more like Alice than I thought and much more like her than I ever wanted to be.

When I was younger I had my entire life planned out for me – mostly by my mother.  That being said, I was convinced that what my parents wanted for me was equally what I wanted for me, too.  It really wasn’t too much of a push on their part, I’m sure. I’m a people pleaser and at the top of my list is my family.

But, anyway, as I have fallen away from the nitty-gritty, day-to-day expectations that have been a part of my life for so many years, AND as I have grown to embrace my individuality in all of its many forms, I realized that I have been wandering for the last several years.  Wandering in one random direction or another, just hoping to be able to find ____________ (someone to love me, someone for me to love, someone to accept me, a job I WANT to work, peace, happiness, joy, etc.).  Wandering in any given direction to merely find myself among the “mad,” never really happy with where I’m at.

I’ve known for some time that I wasn’t going to be able to follow in the direction and expectations my family has pushed on me but, even with that realization, it is still hard to accept my individual responsibility to choose my own path and live my own life. So, today, I am going to lay down my own desires as the framework for my new life direction.

-          I want to be loved and to love.  I have so much love to share and I want to love someone with all of my heart.  I want to be able to share my life with someone who also wants to share his with me.  I’ve had this once and it was wonderful when it was good and terrible when it was bad.  I want to find that one special someone who wants me too.  Sometimes the loneliness is crippling and I don’t know what I’m going to do.  All I can do now, though, is be patient and make myself the best, most desirable me I can be.

-          I want a family.  A real one. Not a second-class one that has to be called something else. I want to be with one person through the good, the bad, and the ugly. Through sickness and health. I want to be with someone forever. I want to be a dad with kids who love me and know that I love them.
-          I want a house, a garden, and someday I want a small ranch with cattle and horses, too.

-          I want to live authentically without fear of retribution at work and at home.

-          Ultimately, I want to be me. The man I’ve buried yet fantasized about becoming since I was 12 years old.  I’m sick and tired of running. I’m tired of hiding. I’m tired of being half a person. 
My time is coming, and my path is set. Some days I walk quickly, others more slowly, but I have followed the Cat’s direction and I know where I want to go. I know how I need to get there, and I’m one my way.

I hope you have a wonderful week and I love all of you!



PS – This isn’t the original post I wanted to share with you.  I decided to post that on my personal blog ( ) because I felt like I needed to share the above post here, for whatever reason.  If you feel like reading up on my passion for shoes and my dissection of an old expression, check out it out. Love ya!


  1. MJ, I love this. I love that you have declared what you want. You have every right to have these dreams and for them to become a reality.

    I just listened to an interview with Bill Bradshaw (a former BYU Biology Prof) who has a gay son who is legally married to his spouse and lives in California. They had a female friend who offered to be a surrogate for them, and now they have a daughter. Their family is as legitimate as anyone else's. For someone to expect you to give up these dreams and desires is nothing less than ludicrous to me. Why shouldn't you have all of this?

    I hope that all of your wildest dreams come true and I wish so much happiness to you. Much, much love.

    1. Thanks so much, Tiffany. I do dream of each of these things and I truly want all of them but I am so surrounded by obstacles that it is often hard to believe that they will ever happen. Thanks for your support and for your love. Much, much love to you too!

  2. Way to set your intentions out there. I tend to believe that the things our heart most searches for are also out there searching for us, it's just a matter of timing. And I have to say I love watching this new you emerge. You are one of the most beautiful souls I know. Sure do love you.

    1. I hope so, my heart wants a lot of things... Jo, I have loved reconnecting so much. SO MUCH! I envy your serenity and I cherish our friendship. Thank you for being you, for loving me, and for letting me love you (both) too.

    2. hey. I heard my name... sort of. I can read between the lines...I want love. I like loving! and dancing ;)

      I agree with Jo. I also think that our hearts know what they want before we learn how to listen and by the time we do listen some new thing has already emerged.

    3. I want love too. Like yours. But I also am SO glad I found you two. I love your love so much! I love what both of you have said here and I am so grateful for whatever is emerging. I know that this blog has been a catalyst and I'll be forever grateful to both of you for it!

    4. Also, I love dancing too. We should do it more often.

  3. Really great post MJ. I kind of envy you. For so long I thought I knew what I wanted and where I was headed. I now realize that I don't know where I want to go. I have been "trapped" in a way that it always made it easier to stick to one goal or one direction that I missed all of the other things I could do. So, here I am, stuck at square one, looking into the future with great hope and trying to figure out who I am. But, I know that where I am is where I am supposed to be and that all the choices I have made are what is right for me. I'm excited for your journey!

    1. Thanks, Chris, but don't envy me. I am years behind you in SOOO many ways. I truly wish I had been as smart as you when I was 19 years old.

      For all the best intentions, parents trap all of us in the hopes that we'll do what they think is best for us. It isn't an exclusively Mormon thing, either.

      You are young with a world full of opportunity ahead of you. Square one is a great place to be. I think it's far better than being at square 11 and realizing you need to backtrack to square one. That's about where I'm at. You are loved by many and you will do extraordinary things, I am positive. You are where you need to be, just make sure you surround yourself with people who lift you up and encourage you in your decisions. Live your life for you. I am trying too and I know it's rough but I am confident that we can do it!

      Plus it helps that you have a phenomenal sister and adopted sister-in-law, and friends here at this blog who are rooting for you! I know they're here for you and I promise you I am here, too. I think you're sister knows I'm here for you but I hope you do too. If you need anything, let her know and I will do everything I can to help out!

      Take care friend. And, as we say in french, good courage.

    2. technically it's sister out-law... :)

    3. Dun dun duuunnnnn. I like it.