The Weight of Disbelief

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It’s been a year since my very best friend — and the light during most of my life — died. I still can’t quite wrap my head around that. I definitely can’t wrap my heart around that. Sheri Roberts Tennant was my counterpart in so many ways: we really got along like Will and Grace in most respects, down to being a nearly undefeatable team in board games because we knew and could read each other so well.

One of the most over-whelming aspects of losing Sheri for me was the practically crushing weight of being the sole witness of all the memories we lived together in the course of our 40 years. The secrets she confided, the things she believed, the dreams she dreamed, as well as each Read the rest of this entry

Blowing my face off

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At the Gay Christian Network conference in Houston in 2016, the theme of most of the break out sessions that I attended was recovering from shame. Brené Brown’s name was big that year. She is an expert in studies on vulnerability and shame, and her statements were espoused by session leaders and struck deep chords in so many of the thousands of LGBTQ Christians who were present. Spending your life hiding who you are, believing you are a mistake and forsaken by God, being told endlessly that you are an abomination, a blight, the thing that makes Jesus puke, that the only way to live and be loved is by denying how you were made by that same God, being promised loving acceptance that will be snatched away and replaced by rejection and condemnation if what you strive so hard to bury ever sees the light of day, is a universal experience for those of us who were raised and lived in the evangelical Christian church.

It’s hell on earth. And long years of it teach you to never let your guard completely down, never be really vulnerable, never subject yourself to the possibility of losing everything. Bullying and abuse from other kids and adults is just the way it starts when we’re young. As we age, the church takes the childishness out of bullying and replaces the meanness with hatred disguised as loving concern. Read the rest of this entry

Communing with the Great Artist

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Las Vegas – and Nevada – is not at all what I expected.

I grew up in northeast Ohio and western Pennsylvania, I’m an Appalachian boy. The Allegheny mountains with their lush summer forests and bubbling streams have always been the place where I felt the most peace, at home with God.

But for the last decade or so, the pain of the combination of my particular ailments has become increasingly severe in the winter months. I began to look south for a similar environment, deciduous rolling mountains in a warmer clime, preferably in an arts-based community. Tennessee, the Carolinas, even southern Virginia. Nothing seemed just right, and the high humidity in those areas is anathema to Khrysso.

And then last year a dear friend who had relocated to Las Vegas came home to visit, Read the rest of this entry

What a feeling!

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Gilda Shedstecker Presents! Go On With Your WindSo I’m working on a revision of the stage parody we produced 2 years ago, Go On With Your Wind. It was a huge undertaking and a ton of fun, but the show clocked at a good 3+ hours. It needs tightened and trimmed, but I was told by an objective someone whose opinion I value: this show needs to be published. One of the best parts about revision: making it better, funnier, sharper.

So I’m sitting in the studio at l’Auberge working feverishly on my script, and my husband, Khrysso, is sitting in the studio working on a piece of art, and he asks for my opinion and some technical input, and I send him a PDF of my latest draft for editing, and to get his feedback. I’m laughing at my own comedy, and marveling at his colors and his design, and we pause to discuss some plans for giving back to the community.

This is a dream come true. It’s so incredible, this feeling of rightness, of goodness, of well-being. It’s been such a long journey to get to this place that I never imagined existed. There is so much love in this world, safety in this home. Our daughter is chatting with her boyfriend and watching funny videos. Our best friend, Patti, our Mrs. Madrigal, is playing her dulcimer and we all break to watch some Father Brown.

This place has a flood of friends who do not feel the need to judge one another, who practice love without question, who cast the net of grace and charity and service wide. I am so blessed to be here. I don’t know how it happened, I don’t know how this dream came true, I only know I am grateful beyond measure.

So then, the rogue, Thrett Cutlet says to the vixen, Spoilitt O’Hairy, “Why? Maybe it’s because I’ve always had a weakness for hopeless causes, and you’re really hopeless. Or maybe, maybe there’s some other reason that’s been cut from the script. Who knows?”

©2018 Grey Forge LeFey

And the winner is–!

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Grey Forge LeFeyIn my high school senior English lit class I loved the writing assignments. I wrote essays and short stories, poetry, and wrote my thesis on Wonder Woman. We also had reading assignments and wrote conclusively about what we read, and I did just fine. Until Miss George assigned Thomas Hardy’s The Return of the Native. For some reason I’ve never examined too closely, I took an immediate dislike for the novel, and I could not bring myself to read it. Every day in class we were assigned new chapters and I was supposed to write answers to questions about this classic dreck. So based on the Read the rest of this entry