I just got back from Washington, where I spent a week with one of my friend’s families. I had a great time. We spent a few days in Seattle visiting his brother at the University of Washington. I fell in love with the Seattle. It was so welcoming. I suppose it was obvious that my friend and I were gay. As we were out and about, people were so friendly to us. I mean really truly welcoming. One woman told us that she loved us just out of the blue. We saw other gay people- including couples holding hands. As a whole, it felt like being gay was a non issue. I mean even more so than in San Fransisco, where being gay, though accepted and welcomed, was very much the issue. In Seattle it just didn’t matter.
And UW is a beautiful campus. It was like being in heaven. As I was watching the people on campus, I felt this huge sense of regret for not transferring away from BYU. I could have spent the last two years in a beautiful place, worshiping the way that I want to, and living the way that I feel is right. Instead I have lived in a desert surrounded by ugly buildings and people who, for the most part, all think one way. I have had to bend over backwards to conform to rules that defy what I believe is right. And in the end, I will have a degree from an institution I hate and that represents a group of people to which I will not belong.
I almost broke down over it all. Now I am back at BYU working on some commissions and making art for my final BFA show. On campus today I was greeted very warmly by friends and two of my professors. They all know I am gay, and are very supportive. While this place may be ugly, and while I may be forced to live differently than I believe is right, I do have a place here. And as much as I complain, I do enjoy my time here. But some day, some day I will leave and never come back. Some day I will live in a city as welcoming as Seattle, and I will live an honest, complete, open, and fulfilling life in the way that I choose.