There will come a time in our lives when we have to choose between our own true desires and the desires other people have for us.
It will always be a tough choice because whatever decision we make, someone’s going to be impacted, sad, and upset. If we choose our own desires, our families or friends may interpret it as disrespectful toward them.
On the other hand, if we choose our families’ and friends’ desires for us, we often betray ourselves. This is the worst of all the nightmares.
In other words, every action has its corresponding consequence.
In the pursuit of seeking who we truly are or where we truly belong, we feel powerless and lifeless because, along the way, thousands of rocks, pins, and needles will be presented and there to greet us. One hurdle after another.
This is a never-ending experience. We tell ourselves to give up because we can’t handle the pain anymore. But that’s the part when life tries to persuade and trick us. We have to believe that somehow, after decades of walking, flowers and colorful gifts instantly show up from nowhere.
We have to trust in some greater unknown force. We have to somehow believe that there will be an end to all the needles and pins. We have to believe that the struggle we’re in will help us magnetize and attract infinite opportunities and open-minded, deep, crazy, weird, and funny people into our lives.
But none of this would work if determination, courage, and bravery was not amongst us. These three key qualities are what we need to surpass any obstacle presented to our naked eyes. We need to say “no” if the beat of our hearts is telling us to say “no.” Just like we need to say “yes” if the beat of our hearts is telling us to say “yes.”
Simple, and yet so hard to do. Ironic isn’t it?
And it’s all because of people.
They’re the number one problem in the pursuit of seeking who we truly are. People will try to constantly block our every move because they think it’s not the “right move” or it’s not the thing they have planned for us.
A plethora of thoughts run, inhabit, and pollute our minds. One of the bravest and courageous decisions we can make in our lives is to defy everything and anything that’s against our own will. If we are forced to follow this decision, eat this piece of cake, sing a song in front of a large crowd, be a comedian in class, run 60 minutes nonstop, or even take a damn selfie—we need to defy it and be able to say “no” loud and proud.
If we are forced to do anything we don’t love, we need to defy it because it is clearly of no benefit to us—thus wasting our time. As long as we are attached and dependent on someone else’s approval, we will always be hanging in a tree not knowing where and how to land.
I remember there was a time in my life where the only thing I wanted to write about was LGBTQ+ rights. How they matter. How they are important. How they are valid. But, as expected, I got all kinds of disapproval from the people around me. “You should not write something like that! You know that is something against the teachings of the Bible! You know that could be an embarrassment if someone knew you wrote something like that!”
The list is goes on and on and on.
Still, there was something in me that wanted to continue writing about the subject. There was an invisible friend who constantly bickered and annoyed me to write about it in hopes of changing and widening the minds of our society. There was that innate desire to share the things I believed to be true and worthy—something not commonly discussed by the mass. There was that innate desire to help, to share, to create, and to challenge.
So I did just that. I wrote and wrote and wrote—and never once did I regret the choice I made. Never. Through my writings, I was able to prove and show people that LGBTQ+ people matter. That they are human and should be respected as such. Through my writing, I was able to pour out the things I believed in—unfiltered, raw, and genuine.
The mentality that anything outside the norm is “a disgrace,” was taken off of my mind because I wanted to seek more. I wanted to know why people were rejecting these notions, why people were saying they were not worthy of respect and honor. I got out of my comfort zone and went against the collective will.
Sure, I got plenty of disapproval and criticism for my writing, but that was fine because for once I followed what the beat of my heart was saying. I defied logic, practicality, and the old mentality—and in doing so got myself back.
Somehow along the way, we will all have an epiphany. We will realize that getting in touch with the deepest parts of ourselves is more valuable than anything this world can offer. We realize that as long as we let others decide what’s best for us, we will always be living in a world full of darkness and pollution.
If you’re afraid to take the first step, just remember that there are thousands of people in the same situation as you. My advice is to just try and step into unknown. See what happens. We never know where we are landing. Maybe we land on a smooth, dirt-free place full of butterflies and dragonflies. Or we may go back to the polluted place we once lived in.
Nonetheless, it all comes back to our own choices of whether we want to change our lives for the better or continue being someone else’s slave.
I have come to a firm decision that I want the former.
Who’s with me?
Author: Joshua Go
Image: V Pickering/Flickr
Editor: Danielle Beutell
Copy Editor: Catherine Monkman
Social Editor: Taia Butler