I was going through old journals and came across this gem from a blog post I wrote in my sophomore year of high school, shortly after I came out of the closet. It’s funny how a lot has changed, but some things have stayed the same. If you told me then that I would be working for Rentboy, The Saint at Large, and Folsom Street Events I wouldn’t have any idea what you were talking about. Then I would have laughed in your face and made a snide comment regarding sex workers and the porn industry.

Even when I first moved to New York City, I would not have believed you. I would have been curious, but still in disbelief. Whenever someone discovers the work I do outside of professional dance, they are often shocked and judgmental of my choice to enter and continue working in the sex industry. While some of their concerns may be valid, I stand by and am not ashamed of my choices. We are all multifaceted individuals, and this is only one side of me.

There are times when it feels like I’m living two separate lives. Many of my closest friends are aware of my work as a Rentboy and are understanding and supportive. Others will, and have tried to, put me down and discard me as a common whore, but that shows more about their limited understanding and close-mindedness than it does about me. I’m very open about sex and sexuality and work against the stigma surrounding sex workers.

That being said, I welcome LGBT History Month and National Coming Out Day with open arms. As much work as I do face down, ass up, it’s equally important to understand, acknowledge, and remember from where and how far we’ve come as a queer community. We should all try to be more loving of ourselves and others, and inspire the same in others. As Pink eloquently sings, “Don’t you ever, ever feel like you’re nothing. You’re fucking perfect to me.”

Ever since my not so near death experience I’ve been going through a lot of personal changes. That is to say, of course, that not everything about me is different – but a lot of things are. I gladly welcome change and progress because it reminds me that I’m still alive and I’m still here. Although I allow myself to experience new things, it has thrown me off balance. I feel like a lot of changes are happening all at once, and I don’t think that I’m equipped to handle it all by myself.

Anxiety starts to creep in and take hold of my very being as I experience these changes. I say that they are good because they are replacing my bad habits and vices, but they terrify me because I worry that I will get lost. Not to say that I’m losing myself completely, but I feel that I might lose the parts of me that I want to keep.

Let’s go on a bit of a story break here. Last week I went out with my friend, R., and we mad our way to a clothing store. In the past I’ve always enjoyed shopping, whether it was for me or for someone else. This time something was different. I thought my masculinity was tat stake. In the male-dominated society we live in, the masculine and feminine are constantly butting heads. Shopping is an activity categorized by many to be feminine and, in my upheaval of change, I didn’t know what to make of it.

I think the reason why I felt helpless that day, and why I was so uncomfortable in my own skin, was because I was suppressing feelings of judgment. I expressed these sentiments and concerns with my friends who all told me to simply be myself. That’s a bit difficult to do at the moment as I consciously and subconsciously reevaluate my values and actions. Whether I act feminine or masculine should be of no concern to me, but labels and expectations are infiltrating the way I live my life.

I accept these changes and will try not to allow society to interfere with my path toward discovering my true self. What I’m trying to get at here is that you should love yourself for who you are and not let anyone dictate the way you live. Refuse to be categorized and put into a box. Love yourself for who you are.

An excerpt from my journal, circa 2007

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