Faith, Family, Football… and the Final “F”

Here goes…

A couple of month’s ago I started this blog, but I was never honest about what it was really about. Faith, family and football are a big part of it, but there is one more “F” that I haven’t shared with you.

I’ve tried to construct the perfect way to do this, but the truth is – there is no perfect way and I’m tired of obsessing over it. It’s exhausting. My TEDx talk was going to be the big reveal, but frankly that’s a bit to Hollywood for me and just really not my style.

So what is the final “F”?

The final “F” is fag…

I am gay.

IMG_0120

One of my best friends and first love, Josue. (Thank you for giving me permission to use this photo)

 

Forgive my lack of political correctness, but I appreciate the play on words. I hope I didn’t offend anyone by using it so loosely, but, bare with me, it serves a purpose.

Like many others before me have experienced, this is a difficult decision. Right now some of you are reading this and might be thinking differently of me. That is your right. I’m not going to take the superficial high road and say I don’t care what you think, because if I didn’t, you would have been reading this a long time ago, but I deserve to live my life with as much peace and happiness as any other person.

So why now?

It’s Thanksgiving (officially) and tonight my family and I will sit around the table and share what we are thankful for. Last year I shared that I was thankful for an incredible family that – at the time – was just learning about the real me and was nothing but supportive.

A year ago I was thinking about what my life would be like a year later. Truth is, because of my job, I haven’t made much progress. I made the decision to put my life on hold to pursue my career and passion.

I take coaching very seriously and in my first year as a varsity coach and having gotten my dream job I didn’t want anything about me to be a distraction, but the season (sadly) is over and now I am chasing a different dream – helping change a message and a culture. Tonight when I sit down at dinner I would be saddened to know I hadn’t at least started sharing that message yet.

This is the time of year when we all take a breath and recap the last 12 months of our life. My last 12 months have been a wild combination of the greatest happiness and sadness I have ever known. It’s been life in all of it’s wonder and tragedy.

I’ve tried to think of everyone who I thought deserved to know before the rest of the world. While I haven’t gotten to many of you, I’ve gotten to as many as I can.

I’m sure you have a lot of questions. My TEDx talk will certainly explain more… Including my NPC use of the word fag.

So tonight I will sit around the table with my family and after a year for the record books I will be able to say I am thankful for finally being myself.

Not perfect, but myself. It’s been a long time coming.

So a very special thank you to everyone who helped me survive this first year of coming out. There are countless people and you know who you are.

Happy Thanksgiving! And god bless.

 

Shane