Who Am I?

(Written during a period of Humanistic Therapy at the suggestion my my counsellor Paul Parkin) in August 2001.

A man close his eyes and think hardI am a Homo Sapien, one of the many living species that inhabit the planet Earth. As a human being I am aware that my intelligence gives me superiority over other living matter. I am however mindful that coexistence of a symbiotic nature with the ‘lesser’ inhabitants of the planet, is essential to the ecology of mother earth.

The issue of what, if not who I am, may seem obvious. I am bounded by my physicality. My personal territory, which stops at my outer skin. It is all that is visible to the world. But there is much more to me than can be seen. The real me is on the inside. I regard all my major organs vital to my existence. They are designed to function in harmony with one and other; their efficiency crucial to my well being. My heart not only as the pump of life but also as the centre of my compassion. I feel it is only with the heart I see rightly, that which is essential in my life, is often invisible to the eye. I would like to think I had a compassionate heart.

I know I have experienced a ‘broken’ heart. That is the price I have paid  for loving. The happiness then, is the heartache now. That’s for sure. I am fascinated by the workings of my brain. Remote from the rest of my body. It has no intrinsic moving parts, and yet every cell in my body is ruled by my brain. It’s commanding presence order sensation, movement, thought and language. It is also the repository for my thoughts and dreams. I see my central nervous system as my personal Internet highway. It is the epicentre of my pleasure, joy and laughter; and equally valid sorrow grief and tears. The way that I think see and hear. How I discriminate between what I consider beautiful and ugly, good or bad. In other words it is very much what determines my individually.

My psychology I define as my mind, my mental state, my consciousness and unconsciousness as the ‘software’ of my brain. It is where my thoughts originate, my feeling develop and my Behaviour is motivated. I consider it to be the most significant ingredient to who I am. I am after all everything my thoughts make me.

Most importantly I’m a Gay man. I am convinced my homosexuality is an integral part of my genetic make up. And therefore a natural state, profound and involuntary. I do not see it as as a condition that can easily be distilled into a a few simple references. More as a constellation of feeling and non feeling emotions, thrown together in many combinations.

For many years my conceptual self informed me that being gay was wrong; more than that, sinful. I also perceived it as a mental illness, and if treated I would be ‘cured’. I suspect that these beliefs emanated from the religion I was brought up with and endorsed by the Bible no less. With the advent of AIDS a more secular society joined in, compounding matters by labelling it the ‘Gay Plague’. A grave misconception indeed to think that only people who happen to be different from the so called norm would be subjected to the HIV virus. What a stupid assumption to make, and by definition very dangerous.

All these years later I no longer feel the need to justify the way I was made. I now see my homosexuality as valid as heterosexuality. The fact that I belong to a large minority does not disqualify me from membership of the human race. I am the product of my whole self, no less, and no longer wish to compromise same in order to conform to society’s expectations of me.. To suppress my sexual orientation further would mean continuing a life fragmented, a dysfunctional human being holding tight to what little I am, unable to celebrate my individuality… I therefore regard Who I am as all I want or wish to be,

David Tomkinson