Thursday, November 11, 2010

One year out

One year ago from today was a day unlike anything I've ever experienced. I felt emotions I've never felt before. It was a day I will never forget. It's been 365 days since I let the world know another part of who I am. A secret I had been holding onto for too long. That secret was that I'm a gay man.

I've been extremely blessed in life. I was fortunate to be brought into a happy and loving family. But at the same time, I've had such a challenging life. Growing up in the Mormon church, obviously there have been some conflicts with my sexuality. I tried to live in denial for as long as humanly possible. But it got to a point where my mind was too exhausted to function properly. I have one side of me telling me I'm gay and this is who I am, and another side of me telling me I can change and that being gay is wrong and being gay is a sin. Do you know what that does to a person? I do. It's called depression.

One of the hardest things for me in my life before I came out was being around friends, family, or random strangers, and hearing them bash on gay people. To hear their feelings about me was like a dull, rusty knife through my heart. I just want to let you all know now, that hearing those negative things left a deep permanent scar. So please be careful about the things you say about other people. You never know who will hear your words, and you never know how many hearts you'll break. Be kind. You may not understand why someone lives the way they do, or why someone likes the things they do. Just because someone likes or does something differently than you doesn't mean you can tear them down. I'll admit, I still struggle with this. There are people I just don't understand. Just today I was at the mall and I saw a guy wearing black leather pants, a netted tank top and a red feather boa. My immediate thought that passed through my mind was... "What a weirdo". But I immediately erased that thought and made a conscious decision to not judge the guy. Who am I to judge someone else for who they are and the way they dress? In fact, I told myself "Wow, that guy has awesome confidence to wear something like that in public. Good for him." Please make a change in the way you think. I am. Some people like Chinese food, some don't. Some people have brown hair, some don't. Some people have an interest in politics, some don't. Some people get up for work at 6:00 A.M., some don't. Some people are attracted to the opposite sex, some aren't. The point is, we are all different. We need to stop judging others because they don't live the same way as you do. Our beliefs should not divide us. I hope we can put our differences aside and live peacefully with one another.

It took me about 21 years to accept myself. It took another 3 years to fully accept myself. That's when I decided to come out to the rest of the world. For weeks before I came out, the thought of coming out kept coming to mind. But then I would immediately cast that thought out. What's going to happen to me? What's going to happen to my family? What are people going to think? These are questions I've had for years and years and years. When I was younger, I always imagined what it would be like to not have to hide. But I honestly never thought I would EVER get there. I envied those that were out and cringed at the thought of having to come out myself.

I thought and thought about how I wanted to come out and what the best way to handle it would be. I could tell people face to face, but that would be awkward for both me and the person I was telling. The last thing I wanted to do was to put someone in an uncomfortable position. Should I put it on Facebook? No, I thought. That seems a little weird to come out on a social networking site. But then I kept thinking about it, and it made the most sense to me. To let everyone know in one clean swoop was going to be the best choice. November 11th, 2009 I started writing my feelings. Those feelings ultimately turned into my coming out letter. As I sat there writing, it was pretty easy for me to do. My feelings have been so bubbled up at the surface for so long, they were able to boil over easily onto the computer screen. What wasn't easy was publishing those feelings to everyone. At the time I was living on a tiny rock out in the middle of the Pacific Ocean. Away from everybody. Isolated. I completed my letter but just sat on the couch in fear. I so badly wanted to hit "publish" and get it over with. I couldn't. I was terrified. I sat there staring at the screen. The letter was typed up and ready to go. I remember the sun was setting and I could see there was a beautiful Hawaiian sunset outside the shutters. My favorite thing in the world. As I sat there, literally shaking, Rusty was by my side letting me know how things will be ok. He was comforting me and telling me how much he loved me and that he would be there for me. At that time I honestly had no idea what relationships I would lose in my life. I thought by doing this it would be the end of many friendships. He talked to me for quite a while. Sharing his own experiences, and giving me words of love and encouragement. Finally, at 5:40 P.M. my time, I slowly dragged my cursor over the "publish" button... and clicked. My body went numb. I turned off my phone, closed my computer, and fell into Rusty's arms and sobbed. I cried harder than I think I've ever cried. The fear was so intense. I felt like it was a dream. My body felt like it was slowly lifting out of itself and hovered about 3 feet above me. The feeling was pretty indescribable. I laid there crying, not really knowing what to do or what to expect. The sky still pink and orange from the sunset... I remember feeling a feeling of inner peace. After I cried myself out, Rusty decided it would be best to get out of the house. He took me a mile down the street from our house to have dinner out on the patio at The St. Regis Hotel. It was the hardest but best night of my entire life.

When I returned home, fear immediately overcame me. I was now around my phone and laptop. I didn't want to look at my Facebook page or turn on my phone. I was fearing the worst. I put it off for a while, but couldn't take it any longer. When I logged onto my Facebook, I was so overcome with loving and supportive messages from so many people. I sat there reading the messages and cried. I instantly knew that coming out on Facebook, even though I had doubts about it, was the best decision for me. To see email after email of love was exactly what I needed. I still have those messages. And they mean the world to me.

There is so much I have been through. I have come a long way. It's been a rocky road, but I believe it's made me a stronger person. Life is difficult when you're constantly discriminated against. And for something you can't control. I want you to know that being gay IS NOT a choice. I'm tired of people saying you choose to be gay. You absolutely do not. Why would I choose a life that's extremely difficult? Why would I choose this life in which people discriminate you and don't give you equal rights? I chose to be gay as much as you chose to be tall, or short. Or male or female. God doesn't make mistakes. He didn't make a mistake when creating me. And he didn't make a mistake creating you. I want anyone who may be reading this who is struggling with this issue to know that you can talk to me without fear. I know how important it is to have someone in the same shoes to talk to. I have a great group of friends who helped me along the way and I'm very thankful for them. Just know that I'm here if you need me. And also know that things do get better. Despite what you're telling yourself. I wish I could go back to my teenage self and tell him things will be ok. Time heals all wounds.

I love you all. And thank you for loving me for who I am, and not what I am.


Sunday, June 13, 2010


Today was the 30th day of P90X.
Even though I wanted to pass out after the workout, I'm
definitely feeling good and seeing progress. It's been a challenge, but
one I knew I could accomplish if I set my mind to it. Bring on phase 2!

Sunday, May 23, 2010


10 Days ago I sucked myself into something
without even thinking about it.


10 days completed and I'm feeling awesome. It's TOUGH, but so rewarding at the end of each workout. I can only imagine how
I'll feel on day 90. Pretty great I'm sure. Let's hope I can stick it out!

Monday, February 8, 2010


A - Age: 24
B - Bed size: King
C - Chore you hate: Cleaning the bathroom.
D - Dog's name: No dog.
E - Essential start your day item: ?
F - Favorite color(s): Blue & green
G - Gold or silver: Silver
H - Height: 5'8"
I - I am: I am happy!
J - Job: Looking for one. If you know of one... let me know!
K - Kids: Want them.
L - Living arrangements: All over! San Francisco until March. Kauai until April. Utah in April.
M - Mom's name: Linda
N - Nickname: T-boz. Never thought it would stick. Here we are 10 years later and it's still going strong.
O - Overnight hospital stay other than birth: I don't think I've had an overnight hospital stay.
P - Pet peeve: Sunglasses at night or indoors. People who swerve in and out of traffic on the freeway.
Q - Quote from a movie: "Swimmy, swammy, slippy, slappy. Schwim, schwam, schwanson, swanson?"
R - Right or left handed: Right
S - Siblings: 4. Brandon, Courtney, Amy, Austin.
T - Time you wake up: 8:00. And I don't even have a job!
U - Unique thing about your car: It has traveled across the Pacific ocean.
V - Vegetable you hate: Zucchini, squash, kale.
W - Ways you run late: Can't find wallet is usually my only reason. I'm pretty punctual.
X - X-rays you've had: Teeth. That's all I can think of...
Y - Yummy food you make: Bruschetta, grilled cheese.
Z - Zoo favorite: Hogle Zoo is the only zoo I have been to. And it's been a long time since I've been!

Now I tag: Justin, Karli, Marcie, and Ashley

Thursday, December 31, 2009

Once in a blue moon!

I took this picture of the "blue moon" tonight.
The last time a blue moon coincided with New Year's Eve
was in 1990. I hope you enjoyed it while it lasted because
the next opportunity won't come until 2028!

Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Music highlights of 2009

What a great year for music! I've highlighted
just a few of my favorite songs from 2009.

Favorite album award goes to Imogen Heap. Brilliant!

(Click to see full size)

Matt & Kim - Good Ol' Fashion Nightmare

The Fray - You Found Me

Kelly Clarkson - My Life Would Suck Without You

Miss Li - Bourgeois Shangri-La

Mat Kearney - Closer To Love

Regina Spektor - Dance Anthem of the 80's

Black Eyed Peas - I Gotta Feeling

Daughtry - Tennessee Line

Owl City - If My Heart Was a House

Imogen Heap - Wait It Out

Imogen Heap - Bad Body Double

Colbie Caillat - Fallin' For You

The Temper Trap - Sweet Disposition

John Mayer - All We Ever Do Is Say Goodbye

Lady Gaga - Speechless

Shakira - Gypsy

Shakira - Give It Up To Me

Carrie Underwood - Quitter

Carrie Underwood - Mama's Song

Thursday, November 5, 2009


Happy FIRST Birthday, Navi!

Where has time gone? November 6th, 2008, one year ago today, my
beautiful Niece was born! It's been such an awesome first year with my
first Niece. She's happy, healthy, and AMAZING! It's been so great
having her in my life. I can't get enough of her. I'm SO sad I couldn't
be in Utah to celebrate with her today.

Navi, Happy Birthday. I hope you realize how much
your Uncle Tanner loves and cares about you!
You're so special to me. You've made everyone that knows
you a happier person. I'm sad I can't be with you today to
give you lots of kisses. But I'm sure your Mom will
do it for me and tell you that I love you!
I miss you, Navi baby! Happy first Birthday!

Uncle Tanner


Thursday, October 15, 2009

Firework insanity!

My favorite holiday is the 4th of July. Why? Because it takes place in the Summer, barbecues, watermelon, corn on the cob, and FIREWORKS! I love fireworks. The website that had this video had a comment about the fireworks in Valencia that I thought was hilarious... "You know how when you see a kid who can yo-yo really well? You kind of feel awed by him… his yo-yo’ing is sweet, it requires a lot of skill, and it’s something you don’t see every day. Still, you can’t shake the feeling that the kid is a freak. A weirdo. It’s simultaneous appreciation and alienation. That’s how I feel about Valencia and its obsession with fireworks."
When I came across this video I decided it's time to plan my trip to Valencia to witness this.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Fall has arrived... and Winter is coming!

See that? Look closer...


There! An autumn leaf!

Okay, that's just a dead leaf. But here's how I know
Fall has arrived and Winter is coming...

The weather has been amazing so far but rain is in the forecast.

Oh well. I'd much rather have to deal with this...

than this...

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

My new blog header... Hanalei Bay. Just minutes from my new home on Kauai.

Friday, August 28, 2009


In less than 2 weeks, I will be living on Kauai! I decided I needed a change, and to get out of Utah. Nothing against Utah... I love it here. But experiencing life outside of the bubble is definitely a must. I've always wanted to live in Hawaii and figured this is the time. Sorry, Mom. I know you are the only one who doesn't want me to go... but it will be very good for me. I'm hoping it's going to be my time to grow, and focus on ME. I quit my job about 2 weeks ago, (best thing I've ever done) and am going to work in Kauai. There's a job offer that I'm considering right now. It's doing reservation sales for vacation condo rentals. The same condos I stayed in on my vacation back in July. They are really nice! When I get to Kauai, I'm meeting with the lady I would be working for to see if it's a good fit for me. I'm really excited, but really nervous at the same time.

Just to give you an idea of the scenery I'll be seeing everyday, I've posted a bunch of pictures. Just be sure to remember the cold weather that's heading to Utah... that makes the pictures even better. :)

Na Pali Coast

Bird's eye view of the Na Pali Coast

How amazing is this?

Seriously??? Wow.
Another shot of the Na Pali Coast. Amazing!

So I will be living in a city called Princeville on the North shore of Kauai.

That red marker on the far right is the area I'll live.

I drove down to California earlier this week and shipped my car off!
I had a little panic attack. There was no turning back.
What a huge decision. It all came together so fast! It's a huge change,
but I know it will be such a fun experience.

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Attention family... good news!

I decided that we're all going to take a trip together.


I'm serious about this. Start saving now because I want everyone
in the family to go! Fall 2010. You have plenty of time to save.

Let's GO! All those in favor say "I".

We'll keep in touch, and thank you for your time.
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