I guess the first thing one does with a blog is give a bit of a history about themselves. I mean it only makes sense. Especially when this blog is basically about me finding out who I am and what I want out of life. Seeing as how every post from here on out will more than likely just be random musings or frustrations then it’s best if you at least know a part of me.
I was born and raised in a small town in the foothills of North Carolina. I have one brother and one sister and an amount of cousins that I couldn’t even begin to describe. I come from a people that were poor of pocket but would feed and clothe you if you needed. My parents taught love and kindness to others. They instilled in us that you share what you can and you be grateful for what you have. We always joke that if you come to two family functions then you are officially adopted by the family and frankly that’s pretty true. My entire life I was surrounded by people that just loved being happy and loved to celebrate life and I have never felt like I belonged.
I don’t mean that in the sense that I don’t believe all of those things, I do, but I honestly was lost for the majority of my life. I did what I thought I should do and never what I wanted to do. I always felt like a stranger to my family and that still holds true to today. I have never felt like I could be me and a large part of that problem was, I had no idea who me was. I just knew that I was different.
It wasn’t until I was in college that I discovered a huge portion of that difference. I wasn’t straight. But I never felt gay either. I was for a while what I called an “I Don’t Careist,” but later came to find out was Pansexual. To me love is love and gender shouldn’t limit that possibility. I still struggle with admitting that and none of my family even knows. I come from a small town in North Carolina… and a baptist family in the bible belt… needless to say that I don’t have hope that the majority of my family would be very understanding. I know that most of my cousins and my two siblings would be very accepting and not even care but that’s not the same with the older generations. I also struggle with depression and anxiety and the idea of someone being disappointed in me or being seen in a negative light gives me panic attacks. So it’s not a big surprise that I just decided to bottle everything up and put on a face of what I thought my family would want. I buried myself so deep that I am discovering new things about myself every day.
So pretty much all of this led to me having a not very healthy childhood and quite a few complexes. I have struggle for years trying to decided what I wanted to do with my life because I had hid myself so thoroughly that even I didn’t know what made me happy. I would do things just to make others proud of me and strive in these areas because I felt that their pride would somehow make me happy and show me what I wanted to do with my life. I was wrong. Only you can discover yourself. Sadly I was just too good at hiding myself.
College was the one time in my life that I was away from all family and could finally be me. I still struggled with the idea of molding myself into what I felt others needed me to be so that they would like me and frankly I still struggle with that today. But college allowed me to branch out and learn to think for myself and stand on my own two feet. I still had no idea what I wanted to do with my life and when asked what career I wanted I tended to make something up on the spot but I was improving. Little did I know that a spur of the moment decision would answer all of my questions. Granted I didn’t realize this until a few years later.
My college had this program where instead of going on spring break you could take a trip with some fellow students for a fraction of the cost and be in this pretty awesome place. The catch was that you had to volunteer while there (the year before they helped build a school in Mexico). The year I decided to go we went to New Orleans, on Mardi Gras week, for $25. It was pretty fantastic. While there we helped rebuild houses that were destroyed by Hurricane Katrina and it was honestly some of the most fun I had while in school. And before the trip I barely knew anyone that I went with. I discovered a small part of myself on that trip. I found out that I loved to help others. And even though I didn’t know it then, this trip planted a seed in me that would eventually lead to one of the largest projects of my life and what 99% of this blog will likely be about once I stop typing this giant novel of a post.
A few years after college graduation I was back in this small town that I hated, surrounded by people that I felt like I had to hide from, and working a job that I was very good at but hated with a passion. All of this led to probably the most depressive moments of my life. I felt stagnant and could just sense my life wasting away in this place that I hated and I knew would hate me if I showed them who I was. And yet somehow during this time I discovered what I really wanted to do. I found out that I actually did have a passion and drive for something. I found out that all I wanted to do with my life is to help others and I found that out through my best friend.
My best friend (we’ll call her Phoebe because she’d love that) came to me one day and had this idea of creating a chapter of a non profit and hopefully approve this town that we lived in. After one meeting Phoebe and I figured out that we had a huge ideas and that we were so excited and ready to go that we really had to reign ourselves in. And it was during this meeting that I discovered that I could be passionate about something. We poured ourselves into this project for months and frankly struggled with every project that we completed. It’s surprising how many people don’t donate or come out to things to support the community or other non profits. But Phoebe and I are very stubborn and we were going to improve that town if it was the last thing we did. Sadly my depression and issues with that town would get in the way of that.
I cant really remember what decided it for me but there was a moment during this time that I frankly just snapped. I couldn’t take it in that town anymore and I couldn’t continue to live with hiding myself more and more. I decided that I had to get out of North Carolina and get somewhere that I could express myself without worrying that it would get me shrouded in hate. That’s how I ended up in Las Vegas.
My sister already lived in Vegas so it helped that I had a support system already here. The strange thing was once I made the decision to move everything kind of fell into place. What snags I hit were extremely small and solved quickly (which frankly was a first) and in three months I was in Nevada. But now I didn’t have Phoebe and I didn’t have this thing that we had managed to keep together through sheer will and determination. I didn’t want to loose either of those things. They were me, they helped me figure out that there was something I wanted to do with my life and that I could actually care about something. I wanted, and needed, to keep this idea alive. And that led to the largest project I have ever undertaken and then led to this blog that is slowly turning into a novel.
The project is to stay in touch but still work together to improve our world through volunteer work and activism. But its all online because we are a nation away. And I started this post thinking that I could keep this all anonymous but I feel like that got away from me and just a few searches and you’ll find who I and Phoebe are but I’m having fun so we’re just going to go with it. And honestly I’m not even sure many people will read this.
So basically the previous 1500 words were to lead up to me saying that I struggled for many years to find a part of myself and what finally led to that was helping others. And this blog is basically going to be a place for me to work out my frustrations and thoughts with working with the public or attempting these projects because Phoebe is a nation away and I haven’t really found friends here to vent to. I need a place to be myself, struggles and all, and to hopefully find the rest of me that I have hidden away. Here goes nothing.