“You would be just what we are looking for… Oh, I am sorry, but we can’t work with you… You understand…”
“Not really. I don’t understand… What? You mean … my life-style?”
So I remain in the life-style, the one that I created, in which I can awaken every morning to kiss my wife on the cheek as she sleeps, and tell her, “I love you.” It is repeated as I leave for work at a job I love to do. She grunts in acknowledgement of our love. We have created this life-style together, as we have built our lives within it.
Then the big decisions of life-style come. The car or the bicycle… and the bicycle won. That has become a large part of my controversial life-style: riding a bicycle to commute. Apparently it keeps me from buying lots of fuel for my car that sits all week long until Sunday when it gets to drive me around to do all my controversial activities.
Sunday, when instead of going to work by bicycle, I must take the car to attend church. It fits well with my life-style, a liberal religion, an intentionally diverse community, where I may be permitted to flaunt my life-style by volunteering to share worship, lead youth, teach children. Oh yes, I do all of that, and more. Some times, I get to be on … committees. They let me contribute to the life of a community of faith. There is faith in humankind, justice, and respect for all as persons of worth and dignity.
I am in the life-style, the one that doesn’t hide love. It is in my coming home, greeted by my children with paws, and my beautiful partner of 19 years, that I know my life-style. It is in the nights I stay up too late, playing on the computer and reconnecting with friends that I know my life-style. It is in planning dinners, weekends for wine tasting, family reunions, and long trips that I know my life-style. It is in times of health, and of illness, that I know my life-style. It is when I am paying the bills to support us that I know my life-style. When I finally get into bed at night, exhausted from a busy day, I breathe; glad I chose this life-style, as I fall asleep to the steady sound of breathing next to me.