Sometimes the things we cannot change, end up changing us
Awhile back, one of the members of the Herpes Life Forum wrote this beautiful passage:
At one point or another, we are forced to confront our authentic selves. For a while we can try on different masks, goof around, fake it. We dabble in this and that, float here and there, even if it doesn’t agree with what’s in our soul. Eventually, though, something happens that snaps us awake, tells us to stop fucking around, and brings us back down. Makes us honestly question ourselves.
No more do I have the luxury of sleeping with whoever finds me attractive. My sexuality is no longer a curtain that I can hide behind, no longer a “fall back” for feeling insecure (or worse, bored). I have been forced to face myself- the raw, ugly, vulnerable part of myself. I have had to find value in the parts that I kept hidden, to become aware of things I did not want to become aware of.
http://herpeslife.com/herpes-forum/discussion/2886/herpes-yoga-and-self-love (re-posted with permission from the writer)
I asked for permission to re-post this because I couldn’t have written it more beautifully myself. So many of us … H+ OR H-…. live much of our lives trying to be what our family, our religion, our friends, or our society tell us we tell us we should be. Past hurts, events, or whatever may cause us to look for love in all the wrong places and allow ourselves to stay in abusive or toxic relationships. We settle in an effort to feel “loved”. We have casual sex not because we are making a beautiful connection with another, but because it makes us feel needed, sexy, or desirable. And we will continue to repeat the behavior until something causes us to do some (often painful) soul searching. Or as one of my favorite sayings goes:
The truth may set you free, but first it may very well piss you off…
Herpes often makes us stop the past unhealthy behaviors because we have no other choice. The early outbreaks make us stop having sex so that we have to re-think what sex is to us. Herpes puts a magnifying glass on our thoughts, emotions, and beliefs in such a way that we just can’t avoid them any more through destructive or unhealthy behaviors. Initially it can be overwhelming, maddening, frustrating, and incredibly depressing. But just as the mighty oak has to initially break through the hard, unyielding shell of the acorn in order to sprout and grow into a beautiful, awe inspiring tree, so we humans often need to be forced to break through the confines that we have placed upon ourselves and our thoughts in order to grow.
As humans, we have the choice every day about which direction we will take, how we will react when we reach a new fork in the road. We we can blame the GPS, our co-pilot, or the road signs along the way for the fact that we have ended up taking a route that was not in our plans. Or we can continue to move forward, watching for the signs we need to get back on track, or even better, for signs to a better destination. Herpes may have sent you in a direction that was not of your choice – however, it’s up to YOU to choose to discover a better, healthier path for your future travels.