Perspective

My route was supposed to be PDX>PHX>OMA.

My route became PDX>TUS>DFW>OMA. Also, please add nearly 7 hours to that PDX>TUS flight (stuck on the plane, that is, in turbulent air and then on a tarmac) AND an overnight in TUS. And a rude gate agent last night. Look, guy. I know you’re stuck here longer than your original shift was supposed to be, but sir, I’ve been trapped on a plane for nearly 7 hours and I’m a 22 hour drive from home and I’m stuck in Arizona. AND I’m smiling at you and being much kinder than about 95% of the others in line. So…check the attitude, maybe. I didn’t say it, but I was thinking it – he had to see it in my eyes and hear it in my kind, strained voice. Right?

Frankly, I was pissed. However, I realized a few things at the airport (where everything was shut down, I might add.)
A) I was hungry. When I am hungry, I am totally, completely unreasonable.
B) I was tired. Mentally, not physically, but still.
C) I was stuck.

I woke up this morning wanting to write about perspective or “a particular attitude toward or way of regarding something; a point of view.”

Life really is what you make it. Being that C was inevitable, I made the best of the situation. The airline didn’t want to give me vouchers for hotel (despite the fact that I had 13 hours prior to my next flight) nor did they want to give me food vouchers (despite the fact that I’d been on a plane from 11:25 AM to 6:30 PM AND was stuck in an unknown city until 8:45 the next morning). Jerks? Yes. We’ll be chatting after I’ve cooled off a bit more.

BUT

There was a time when I wouldn’t have had the $ to do something about this situation. That I would have been stuck, hungry, and tired – at the mercy of the airline. That’s no longer the case. I was able to pull together enough for a motel and some dinner. Perspective. I was traveling over a weekend and didn’t have to worry about missing work. Perspective. I’m a freelancer and my job is mobile. Perspective. I’m safe, I’m alive, I have a wonderful boyfriend who picked up the dogs from the boarder so I didn’t have to pay an extra day. Perspective.

Here’s what I’ve learned: All that negative crap that comes at you? Let it go. It’s not worth ruining a day, making a bad memory of an otherwise great trip, etc. etc. etc. Being mad? Being rude? Being frustrated? Boring. Expected.

Why not do something unexpected and make the most of an unfortunate circumstance? I found a really good restaurant. They had really good local beer. I got to sleep in a king sized bed. I got a bathtub – that’s a luxury I don’t have in my home and it was thrilling to relax in a big old bubble bath.

Even when it’s difficult, find the good in a situation. Don’t let that anger, that frustration, pull you down.

You Love Who You Love (Who You Love)

Okay, it’s confession time. I have fallen in love with the documentary “Bridegroom.” It’s truly terrible, what happens to this young, vibrant couple. And yet, it’s strangely beautiful to watch what becomes of it. I was raised to believe that we’re all different – and that, that is what makes us alike.

How I could relate (but not really)…

Growing up in a midwestern town, it’s easy to see the prejudices people hold deep inside themselves like a secret – even though it’s written all over their faces. When they see an interracial couple, a gay couple, a couple that is somehow different than what they themselves are. And in some ways, I suppose, I was aware of it, though I never really GOT it.

Being that my parents didn’t care what kind of person I dated as long as they were good to me, I’ve been happy to meet and date white men, black men, asian men and, yes, even men that were gay before admitting as much to me or to anyone else.

There was the occasional whisper – when you’d walk into a restaurant or a bar in a smaller town with someone whose skin is a different color than yours, holding hands with them. However, it never led to anything major: no giant brawls, no splitting of families, no radical changes that swept the planet. Life went on. Haters hated. After all, we can’t change the color of our skin, nor can we decide who to love – in a moment or over a lifetime. The heart is…well. Useless to reason with, for one thing.

And this prejudice? It is the closest I’ve ever been to the deeply rooted hatred that some people carry. I didn’t like it, but it wasn’t earth shattering for me- it didn’t change things because there was never a large enough event that occurred crying out for change. I was never threatened or beat up or screamed at. It all just…was.

Which brings me to…

I’m straight. I didn’t choose to be straight, I just am. Like…I am a dog lover and I am a writer and I am from the midwest.

Being a certain sexuality – it’s not a choice we’re given upon birth. It’s just who we are. It simply guts me to know that there still exists those who feel that being homosexual is a choice. I can’t imagine ever choosing to live through the hatred or the fear or the unfairness. Can you?

My hope is that one day, my grandchild or my great grandchild will be interviewing me for a school project about equality. And, at that time, I’ll have to tell them about when I was young – when a man and a man or a woman and a woman getting married wasn’t legal. And they’ll laugh and tell me how ridiculous that must have been and I’ll whole-heartedly agree.

That’s because it is ridiculous. You love who you love. And love is stronger than hate – it just is. Haven’t witnessed it yet? You will. One day.

Shane Bitney Crone, you are an amazing man. Keep fighting the good fight – I am with you 100%.

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