One of the things Sharon mentions in her teachings & writings is that the skills learned in meditation practice are transferable. I didn’t understand what she meant till I started meditating daily & encountering people’s reactions to Bruce Jenner’s announcement that he is making the transition from man to woman. I’ve always had a special place in my heart for Olympic Gold Metal heart throb Bruce Jenner. He became a hero for me when he became an advocate of those growing up miss-diagnosed learning disabilities. It was shortly after he became the face of dyslexia my own dyscalculia & oppositional defiance disorder were understood. So I’ve been a little jumpy around the news about his coming out about being transgender. Gay & Straight friends alike have said things in person & online that have left me scratching my head.
Yesterday when I came back into the room I’m staying in I found a copy of In Touch with a horribly photo shopped picture of Bruce sitting on my bed & my mind went into full reactive mode the instant I saw it. Currently working and living in a very hero-normative environment which I’m quite used to. In alot of the spaces I’m in (workplace, organizations & at protests) I end up being the token gay and I instantly reacted from that space.
It can be burdensome to be the only gay around: often feels to me people who don’t usually have contact with the LGTBQ community bombard the ones they do encounter with questions & assumptions. So when I saw the magazine I got frustrated that once again someone assumed the fact I was gay that I’d 1) like celeb gossip magazines (because all homosexuals do, right?) 2) That Bruce Jenner is himself gay (which he’s not) & 3) Me being a waver of the rainbow flag I’d wanna read about it.
Then I remembered my breath. Taking a moment to gather my attention I could see the drama was all me in that moment. Instead of beating myself up for assuming the worse about the magazine and the intentions behind it- I was able to understand the feelings were all mine & fleeting. Turns out my co-worker’s girl friend heard me mention I was starved for something new to read. The photo shopped cover aside I was deeply moved & inspired by the stories of Bruce Jenner’s extended family (including those kooky Reality TV Kardashians) coming together as the news has gone public.
Remembering the practice I was able to see my racing thoughts for what they were. My own internalized Homophobia & Trans-phobia. (Yes world, Gay men are often just as guilty as the boys who like girls are of holding unwarranted, unfair bias & irrational fears about our Trans brothers & sisters.) I’m looking forward to seeing what other skills from the meditation cushion begin to creep their way into my daily life. The gentleness & increased patience has been a nice surprise.
I’d love to hear if you’ve had any of the skills transfer into other areas of your life off the cushion like I’m seeing.