Submission and Prison Cells: Part 1

Almost five years ago, I was a devout conservative Christian. I had been married over two years, had a toddler Ms Action running around and a baby Ms Drama due in a few months. I loved my spouse beyond what I had ever thought love was when we first got married, and I still dutifully tried to keep the house immaculate and dinner on the table by the time he walked in the door. I read lots of books on marriage and childrearing, and I gave some of them away too. I remember in particular giving away copies of “To Train up a Child” and “Be Fruitful and Multiply”. I did my best to live up to the ideas I found in the Bible, the Christian books and magazines I read, and the teachings I … [Read more...]

Unwrapping the Onion: Part 4: When It Doesn’t Add Up

This post is part of a series of nine posts. Please click here to start with the series Introduction.I had always been under the impression that LGBTQ people were a new phenomenon. That the population of gay and transgender people had really taken off during the modern age those “godless” sixties. And that before it had become “cool” to be gay, virtually no one was. But that wasn’t making sense anymore. Even today, being queer continues to unleash considerable bias and discrimination. Kids are still routinely getting kicked out of their homes for admitting they are gay or trans. I couldn’t see any benefit to coming out as LGBTQ unless that really was who that person was. In my research I … [Read more...]

Dreams of Defiance

I can hear them in the next room. Dad yanks at his arm, yelling at him and threatening to spank him if he doesn’t do... something? I’m not even sure what he’s in trouble for this time. I cower in the next room, wanting to do something, wanting to save him. I hear the slaps, he starts to cry, Dad shoves him away. Holding my breath, hoping and praying for it to end, maybe if I squeeze myself small enough into this dark corner behind the bookcase... I could just disappear.*************************I stuff more dirty clothes into the wash machine, refusing to look out the window at the dreary sunless day. My sister comes in, long hair pulled back in a pony tail, wearing a long tan skirt and her fa … [Read more...]

Everyday is Forever

Smoke had filled the kitchen before I figured out where it was coming from. I had thrown the oven mitt on top of the stove, and then accidentally turned on the burner underneath it instead of the burner under the pot on the back of the stove. The hot electric rings had burned themselves into the non-flammable mitt, and the blackened edges of the material glowed. I turned on the fan over the stove and tossed the smouldering mitt out the back door and went on with the day. About half an hour later I peeked at the mitt and found that it had continued to burn, right down through the non-flammable layers and into our wooden deck. I filled an old ice cream bucket with water and doused the whole … [Read more...]

Letters to my Dad

Recently in a box of old journals, I found a draft of a letter I wrote to my Dad. After I made a few spelling and handwriting mistakes I had written out a polished copy to give to him, and apparently I saved the original. It’s a letter I wrote for Father’s day 6 years ago, the month before I got married. I was about to turn 20. It’s painful to read in some ways, because it was written when I was still trying so hard to be the daughter they wanted me to be. It’s like reading something from another world. I address him as “Daddy”, and tell him what a strong leader he has been in my life, and express concern that it may be hard for me to “switch loyalties” to my husband because I am so used to h … [Read more...]

Why I Blog

Sorry about the unannounced shutdown. As those of you that follow me on facebook and Twitter already know, my blog got discovered by someone I knew in real life, and it was already spreading.I knew it was bound to happen at some point, it’s kind of hard to disguise some of the unique features my story. I had no game plan on what to do if my blog was discovered, so when I got the news that people from back home could be reading I immediately locked Permission to Live to give myself some time to think.In many ways it was frustrating to know my anonymity was gone, this has been a safe place for me to organize my thoughts and process my issues for almost 2 years now. Part of me was tempted to s … [Read more...]