Self Love

Different vibes…. Still me

To love yourself…. you have to accept yourself.

This is a lesson I thought I mastered many years ago but, lately I’ve realized that this is a life long journey.

As we grow, things in our lives change. Some of these changes are for the better…. Some not so much.

The idea is to accept yourself as you are and love that version of yourself.

Once the love is there, you can begin making adjustments.

I think a lot of the time, we are so busy trying to become the “best version” of ourselves that we forget to be kind to ourselves.

If you’re always chasing some “other” version of yourself and you never take the time to accept and love who you are in this moment….. How will you know if the version of yourself you are pursuing is even compatible with who you came here to be?

The pictures at the top of this post show how this lesson is being lived out in my life.

For years, I was chasing the “serious professional” image. In pursuit of that, I was neglecting those parts of me that love being outdoors, working with my hands, & interacting with farm animals.

I shoved that part of me to the side for over a decade. Why? I was worried about how people would perceive me. I didn’t want people to think I was country or without ambition.

The reality is, I was robbing myself of something I love…… Something that, thanks to my parents, is something I am good at and have the instincts for.

The lesson: Farmer Bash, Bash the Intellectual, and Smooth/Laid Back Bash are all VALID manifestations of different aspects of ME.

In heavily focusing on what I thought was expected of me & worrying about the opinions of others. I spent many years living in misery and searching for what was in plain sight.

I invite you to learn from my mistakes.

Start spending some time with YOU. Even if there are things about yourself that you don’t like, make the effort to accept yourself and love yourself as you are.

From there, you can begin working toward a better version of yourself. Not from a place of wanting to please others or keep up appearances…. But from a place of love.

You deserve it. 😎

Writing

Confession: I’ve been working on a book for about 10 years. I’ve scrapped manuscript after manuscript because I wasn’t quite articulating things in a way that I felt good about.

Sure, the words were hitting the pages but something was missing.

Today, as I was getting ready for work it hit me.

I was writing from a place of raw pain. I had not taken the time to heal.

To be honest, I didn’t know how to heal. I mean. How does one heal?

I had no idea so I’ve sort of wandered around in the wilderness of life for the past decade or so, facing the ugly process of healing.

And, to be clear, healing is an ugly process. It’s not all light and love and butterflies and rainbows.

Healing is messy.

So…. Now that I’m more healed now that I ever have been (Healing is an ongoing process). I am taking the time to see if a book is really what I want to put out into the world or if I want to tell my story through a different vehicle.

Time will tell. For now, I’ll stick to blogging and resume my creative writing journey while reflecting on the many things I’ve written over the years.

I don’t know what’s next but whatever it is will be something that honors my past and the lessons that have come from those experiences.

Thank you for stopping by.

Sending love and light.

-Bash

Minimalism

Good morning Family!

I’ve been thinking about how to do this post. How to…. put words to what I am thinking and feeling. I want to be transparent while saving some things for myself. I want to keep it 💯 without crossing certain personal boundaries.

I will start by saying, “I have been intrigued by the idea of a minimalist lifestyle for quite some time.”

Removing clutter appeals to me because there are other ways that I want to use my time, mental space, and energy.

Over the years, I’ve gone through a cycle of being a extreme minimalist to having so much clutter I couldn’t function to getting fed up and trashing most of my belongings.

This cycle has repeated itself many times and I am exhausted. At this point, I just want to clear the clutter & use the remaining space (spiritual, mental, physical, etc.) for the things that matter.

I’ve already gotten started by beginning the de-cluttering process. The 3 day weekend afforded me sufficient time to begin purging my stuff.

During the first phase of my purging, I started to take breaks and deal with the intangible things that have been cluttering my life. I’m feeling so many things during this process. Joy, rage, goofiness, sadness, etc all have come up during this journey.

This morning as I was getting ready for work, I decided to get rid of some of my shoes. These shoes hold no true significance but I realized, to my surprise, that I had somehow put emotional stock into them. I don’t need them, they are well past their prime but something in the back of my mind kept urging me to keep them “just in case”.

A bunch of excuses for keeping these worn out items played through my mind. I almost gave in….. It was tough but I took a deep breath, reminded myself that I did not need them and I removed them from the shoe rack and prepared them for disposal.

Immediately after that, it’s like a switch turned in my brain. I collected a few more item that I badly needed to get rid of and tossed them into the bag as well.

When I return home this evening, I plan to continue the purge.

I do not expect that it will be easy.

I know I will not regret it.

-Bash

I Am

I am. It’s a complete sentence and a complicated one.

I exist at many intersections of identity. Some of them clash at times.

These clashes make them no less valid.

I am complicated.

I am gentle and intense.

I am fire and water.

I am so many things.

I once hated this reality. I wanted to hide the parts of me I perceived to be undesirable.

With time and experience came a change.

I spend years wanting those around me to celebrate me.

I betrayed myself for the approval of others.

Now I love ME completely.

If someone asks me who my biggest fan is, I won’t look around for anyone else to point out because well….

I am.

2022 Fasting

As the year 2021 comes to a close, I am preparing for my annual start of the year season of fasting.

It started during my time in the C.O.G.I.C. denomination. We did a 21 day Daniel fast every year. It helped a lot of folks lose weight and get centered and/or closer to God.

Now that I’m more of a Christian universalist than anything else, I’ve decided to kick off 2022 with a season of fasting. I know that part of it will be a financial fast in which is engage in necessary spending only. I’m also considering a social media fast during which I abstain from posting on social media or from scrolling obsessively through social media. The jury is still out on that one but I do know that I need a time of fasting.

I used to think that fasting moved God but what it does, for me, is give me an opportunity to be more mindful about what I put into my body and what it is that I allow into my mind. This is something I find grounding because we live in a consumer culture where we are pressed on all sides to eat more, scroll more, & spend more. I wonder what this has done to our ability to produce meaningful things in our society. 🤔

I don’t have an answer in this moment but I’m searching. Hopefully the cutbacks I make this month and the fasting I do to start the new year will bring me closer to an answer.

Thanks for reading.

Bash

Ministry

As a trans man who is called to ministry, I’ve been slacking.

I’ve been afraid.

I’m not afraid anymore.

Now I’m hustling and building. Challenging systems and cistems. I’m grinding.

It’s not about me.

It’s not about the money.

It’s all about the message.

God is love.

God is in all of us.

We should be love.