My favorite quote is from e. e. cummins, "It takes courage to grow up and turn out to be who you really are."
For a very long time I knew that who the world saw when they looked at my life was not who I truly was in my heart. And when I heard the e. e. cummins quote I was ashamed. Ashamed because I knew I didn't have the courage to be who I really am. But I clung to the quote and it has been in my .sig files for 15+ years.
Today ... today, some would say I've "turn(ed) out to be who I really am." But I have not finished my journey. Everyday is a struggle to be who I really am. Everyday I fight the desire, the siren call, the need to be who others want me to be. There is safety there. I don't have to be brave anymore. I don't have to stand in the fire. Yes, it calls to me!
But I cannot go back! "Back" was an unreality. And "Normal" is something that I can never reclaim without going into hiding. Where do I hide from my self? It is a lie that the pain I feel now will be gone. The specific pains? maybe, but there will be pain and hurt still and the shame that I turned my back on who I really am.
It catches me funny sometimes when I think about it, but I am -PROUD- of who I am!