Friday, April 13, 2007

Unconditional Love

"Would You Shower?" Copyright © Austin Cline

Isn't today's poster great? It's obviously some WWII magazine ad for saving scrap metal or something which PhotoShop artiste Austin Cline has warped into every Sodomite's dream come true. This is not "South Pacific" as envisioned by Rogers & Hammerstein, but it sure is South Pacific as envisioned by ME!

Except, of course, that it wasn't quite like that in real life. I should know. I spent four years showering with shiploads of guys and believe me, there wasn't any sodomitical hanky-panky going on that I was ever aware of.

Which isn't to say that there wasn't any, merely that I was thick enough to have not seen it.

That's called "denial" and if you'd like to hear more about that subject be sure to check out my friend, Bev's, weblog today, here.

Bev's a good friend. She even plugs my blog there today. God love her. And speaking of God loving people, that brings me to today's subject, "Unconditional Love."

I've mentioned here before that I grew up in an alcoholic family, that alcoholism figuratively ate my childhood and that I pretty much wound up raising myself, for lack of any worthwhile adult role models as a child. It took me some time in recovery to realize how that lack of attention as a child colored my relationships as an adult. I was always on the lookout for someone to take care of me. I had this aching void in the center of my soul that nothing could fill. It was an unfillable lack of love, AS A CHILD. It's hard to describe, but many addicts are seeking to numb the pain of some unfulfilled need that, as a practical matter, simply can't be filled.

Here's an example. I'd always wanted a good relationship with my father. I'd yearned for it my entire life. But it was only in sobriety that I realized, I don't want a good relationship with him NOW, I want a good relationship with him WHEN I WAS SEVEN!!!

Yeah, I know it sounds ridiculous, but that's what's going on.

Anyway, I'd spent my whole life looking for that unconditional, parental, love that I never got as a kid. And every poor soul I met who showed me the least attention was almost nearly immediately cast into the role of the missing father/mother from my childhood. Without consciously thinking it, I expected them to fulfill all those previously unfulfilled needs in my life.

In short, nobody ever stood a chance with me. I expected too much.

Until I got sober. And found the rooms of 12-Step Programs. For the last year or so I've been suffused with an overwhelming sense of well-being that's difficult to describe. I somehow sense or know that everything is "okay" and that all is well and that no matter what happens, well, that's life. No longer do I feel that there are nefarious forces at work in the universe, out to get me, to ruin my life. Every time I come away from a 12-Step meeting, I feel renewed, refreshed.... Taken Care Of.

And I've started to realize something. I have found what it is that I've spent my whole life looking for in recovery.

I have finally gotten Unconditional Love from a bunch of Adults whom I Trust Completely.

And isn't that what every 9 year old really needs and wants?

Love.... JoyZeeBoy


Bev Sykes said...

Those posters are entirely too much. You know what is sad is that I have confronted several men who have talked about "don't turn your back" on a gay man in the shower and asked what they were really afraid of--if they REALLY thought that a gay man in a shower full of physical fit straight men, would actually attack a straight. Not one has ever answered that question. They disappear from the discussion.

Logic never enters into it.

JoyZeeBoy said...

Glad you like the posters. I hope Mr. Cline doesn't mind me using them.

I, too, have never understood the fear, any more than I have ever understood the question:

"When did you decide to be gay?"

Decide? Decide what? To acknowledge it? Oh, when I was 12.

I have always known that adults decide if and when to have sex with one another. They don't attack one another when opportunity arises.

If they do, then that's called "rape" and it's not sex, it's an act of violence perpetrated purely as a demonstration of power.

I've never raped anybody.

Now, one very well could ask the question, "If they assume they're going to be raped, then they must operate in a rape-based mentality wherein they do rape when the opportunity presents itself and, therefore, assume that everyone else does it, too!"


Bev Sykes said...

Now that's a good argument. I'll have to remember it.

Sometimes I miss the old Sec 17 days...I don't have nearly as much fun now as I did back then!