My story Ė semi short and sweet (sweet?) My dad was in the army. I never lived anywhere for very long and I never really made close friends till high school. I was really shy then, a stick with boobs. Huge boobs. Not very fun to be that awkward looking. But it worked out for me later on in life. I had a few friends but for the most part high school in Kansas was torture. I hated every minute of it. I hated the entire state. I hated that I was shy. I seemed like a pretty good kid, but I didnít grow up in a traditional christian household with those traditional christian based morals. There were so many things I wanted to do and see and feel, but I was so scared and not a confident person at all. My parents were to busy fighting with each other to build our self esteem. They drank a lot back then so my sister and I were left to our own devices. Mostly that meant TV. (I know: typical) In the meantime I had had enough of being shy. I wanted to party, I wanted to have excitement. I wanted to be fun. When my dad got stationed in Alaska, I knew it was my chance to completely remake myself and start all over again. There were people that I would miss, of courseÖ most of which I never spoke to again. Some I have recently been reacquainted with via the internet. (Who knew?) Alaska: To say it simply, I did become a completely different person. People in Kansas would never ever believe the differences in me back then. I looked for the roughest crowd to hang out with. The ďsex, drugs and rock and rollĒ crowd. I found them skipping school at Mariaís arcade in down town Fairbanks. Strangely enough, I fit right in. I hated high school anyway. I forced myself into situations I was uncomfortable with in order to ďforceĒ the shyness out of me. Iím not advocating a life of crime and drugs to build self esteem for anyone here, but crazy enough, it worked for me. I made some of the best friends of my life in Fairbanks. Many of whom I am still close with. I got in fights, did tons of partying, did a lot of stuff Ė just for the fun of it- that Iím not really very proud of. In the end, Iím lucky to have lived. Sounds dramatic, but its true. There are those on my myspace friends who can confirm it. I never graduated. I moved to Alaska the winter of my senior year, and from that point, I got kicked out of more high schools (for fighting, or drugs, or skipping or disrespecting school officials or a wealth of other atrocities) than I can remember. We stole cars, snowmobiles, drugs, money, purses and whatever else wasnít nailed down. It was stupid, risky and I paid for every last horrible thing that Iíve done. You can say that Karma isnít real, but I know first hand it is. During that period of my life, I hitch hiked from Kansas to Missouri to Colorado, Iíve lived on the streets (literally) in three different states, I lived in a homeless shelter in Denver Ė told them I was pregnant so my friend and I could get in, had everything I owned except the clothes I was wearing stolen more times than I care to admit (one time the ass took what I was wearing too!) and became infamous in the state of Alaska, known for being crazy (my nickname was Ė donít laugh) Danimal. I have so many stories to tell about those daysÖÖ. But that is for another time! Alaska is also where I started to learn a little more about spirituality. It was obvious I was definately not cut out for christianity, I didnt believe it anyway. So what did I believe. this is where I started exploring possibliities. I got cleaned up and earned my GED in the early 90ís. I actually received the third highest scores in the state that year. I can do anything if I try hard enough, lol! (Anyone can!) I ended up becoming a stripper (yes, I said stripper) at 21 in Colorado Springs. (It was more money and less sexual harassment than the job I was working at the time at an ice cream shop!) I danced from 91 to 96 all over the county. I wasnít anywhere near awkward looking anymore. I wasnít using drugs, I wasnít hooking, and I never did anything that was against MY moral code. I never found nudity or sex to be shameful. I never felt that showing yourself naked was wrong. Its glorious, empowering and definitely gets you past that last lingering bit of shyness. I always said;ĒIts all just skin.Ē That may seem crass to some of you, but not to me. A person should be able to use what ever strengths they have and if one of them is an unbelievable body, more the better. Itís more straight forward than manipulating men to take care of you because you happen to be cute. We all know that it happens all the time. I never had sex for money. I didnít want to deal with the legal ramifications. I believe that prostitution should be legal and regulated, but I never did it. I did, however, do pictures, magazines and film, (No film for pay, just for fun!) and live girl on girl shows. I loved every second of it. Not to say that there werenít bad days and dangerous situations, but I always managed to get out of them with my dignity intact. I really loved it for the most part, sexy clothes, good music and lots people giving you money for being hot! Whatís not to love? I mostly stayed off the drugs during that time, traveled all over the US and had all kinds of fun. For a while I went to college, paid for it with tips, lol. Did very well, stayed of the honor roll Ė imagine that! All I needed was to get some self confidence. I was no longer awkward, no longer shy, no longer a bad student or a dumb girl, and I looked good enough to be in magazines and dance at some of the top clubs in the nation! I realize that I was one of millions and in no way near the best in those millions, but I was far far from the worst. My love life was just as crazy as it always was, although there were more women in it now. I realized that I enjoy sex with a woman as much as I do with a man and I could easily fall in love with one sex as the other. I am a true bisexual. I learned that it is the person that I love not their age, sex, race or protected class. I have had as many girlfriends as I have had boyfriends. Now you are thinking I am really not the shy girl I used to be in high school. I wasnít then and Iím not now. I was finally free of fearing that others might find me strange, free of worrying what people might think of my choices or the way I sometimes say things with out thinking. I was done trying to be normal. I wasnít. Iím not. Boy, do I have a lot of stories to tell! Oklahoma: Shortly after my third semester in college, I decided to try normality for a while. I should have known it would be impossible, miserable and I would fail. But I put everything I was into getting a normal job, working my way up the corporate ladder, finding a regular guy husband and getting the house, car and kids so my family would be proud of me. I did all of that, but the guy ended up being an abusive meth-amphetamine addicted bastard and the job made me feel as if my soul was being sucked out through my nose. I thought this was what it was all about though. I thought you werenít supposed to be happy. I thought I had to grow up and deal with what I had. So I let him make me into a doormat. I let myself work at a high stress, low reward job because I wanted to fit in with regular people. I wore suits and had my nails done. I wore make up and took care of my self centered, mean ex husband. I let him tell me I was fat, ugly and stupid for years! I let him talk me into believing it. That girl I hated came back that easily. She stayed for the better part of 6 years. If it werenít for my friends at the time, Iím not sure I would have allowed myself to live through it. Toward the end of 2001 I started hanging out more with girls from the office (I worked in apartment management) I started to realize what I had allowed myself to become. I started to work out and build my self esteem again, though not in such a drastic way this time. At this time I was also learning more about what it meant to be Wiccan/Pagan, a theology that certainly wasnt supported by the asshole I was married to. My ex-husband decided that since I was working out, and reading demonic books, I must be cheating. Finally I had had enough and I decided to stand up to him. It wasnít pretty, but in the end, I grabbed the bag I had packed weeks earlier and walked out. I had to run to the police car in the neighborhood to keep him from catching me. I hid from him for weeks. He threatened to kill me, he threatened to kill himself, but I was not going back. I realized that I hated him, I hated my life, I hated my job and it had to end. I couldnít live like a normal person and be happy. I needed help and I needed it then. I did what any sane person would have done. I joined the Army. The U.S. Army: It was my savior. It taught me lessons that I could never have learned anywhere else. The Army taught me about honor, courage, self reliance, confidence and competence. It taught me that I CAN do anything I want to do. It gave me the tools I needed to never allow anything to subjugate me ever again. It made me strong and whole and it destroyed me. It also gave me James. I got to my first unit in the summer of 02. James was one of the first people to come greet the ďnew meatĒ in the battery. He was the crazy guy, always joking around. He was so much fun to be around and he and I became friends pretty quickly. I was in no way ready for a relationship, but I had no problem with bed buddies and guy friends. I had a whole new family in Charlie 1-1. I loved every single one of them! James was my bed buddy. We hung out a lot and had great sex a lot more. He wanted a relationship; I was terrified of the entire idea. I always said; ďI make a terrible girlfriend.Ē He didnít believe me though. He was very persistent. He was also 13 years younger than I was. I had so many doubts about being with a guy that young, much less being in a relationship at all. In the end, obviously, I agreed to be his girlfriend. We have had some great times and some rocky times, but in the end we are still together. He is an amazing person. A true free spirit. He is outgoing, outrageous and undeniably NOT NORMAL! I have never seen a person who has gotten to know him and doesnít love him to some degree. He has that effect of people. He is charming and funny and charismatic. He is the guy who will do anything he can to help other people and feel bad when it is not enough. He is the most fun person to be around I have ever met. We have been together for more than 5 years and we are definitely not normal! But we are happy! I was discharged from the Army for medical reasons. It was an honorable discharge and I was a good soldier. I could have gone far had I not been hurt. I really loved being a soldier; even while we were deployed I loved it. It is unfortunate that it cannot be. During the time between my discharge and Jamesís I had two ectopic bursts in less than a year. I was nearly killed by the first one and I was left unable to get pregnant with out in vitro technology. (It was absolutely devastating for this to happen to me because as a practitioner of a feminine based spiritual path to be able to create life is sacred. I felt like I lost and entire part of my natural life cycle.)In Vitro is very expensive and Iím not sure that we will ever be able to have children with our genetic make up. It is sad and a shame because we want them so badly, but maybe we are meant for other things. After my discharge I looked for work for 8 months unsuccessfully. I decided to go back to school. I maintained a 4.0 and graduated with an associates as an honor student. I attended the University of Texas at El Paso for one semester my junior year, majoring in evolutionary biology and working part time in a lab. At UTEP, I worked on a project that I was very proud to be a part of. I learned so much! James was discharged for injuries just a few years after I was and we decided to move to Florida (where he was from). Because state education requirements are different in Florida from Texas, I was unable to get financing to continue my education. I did find a fantastic job, making decent money. Its pretty stress free and although itís not what I want to be when I grow up, it will do for the next few years. We had to move my dad in with us after he suffered a brain injury and could no longer take care of himself. James quit school to stay home with him until we can find some sort of a program to get him into. For the most part things are good. We are happy. We know we arenít where we want to be yet, but we will get there one day. I refuse to live a mediocre life. AndÖ we arenít normal. Not at all!
Vegan, might have cancer, disabled veteran, Wiccan
I can almost always see both sides of an issue. Makes taking a stand even harder, but I will do it.
What Gives Me Hope
The love of my husband
If I were Mayor, I'd make the world a better place by
Im not sure how to answer this. There is no be all end all answer to save us. To pick one end of an issue and make it law would make everyone on the other end unhappy. A lot of the things I feel strongly about are already laws, people just break them.
What/who changed my life and why
the army. It allowed me to learn how to be a stronger, more honorable me.