A Cat Looks in the Mirror and Sees Himself

Hi prospective students and anyone who happens to follow this here blog,

 

I’m sitting here in the box office with nothing to do because the black box production of Dog Sees God is all sold out. So there’s nothing to do but answer calls and say “Sorry, sold out, haste makes waste.” So I pulled out my MacBook and clicked the bookmark that led me to writing this post.

 

Anyways, last night I had the opportunity to attend the third-to-last performance of this semester’s black box theater production of Dog Sees God by Bert V. Royal. I think it might suffice to say that I had an emotional breakdown at the show’s final blackout.

 

The show presents the audience with a contemporary view of the famous Peanuts comic strip characters as teenagers. Over the course of 90 minutes, the play addresses issues of homophobia, suicide, bullying, drug use, and addiction using the Peanuts characters as a way to make the show more relatable to its audience.

 

My close friend Margaret Smith ’12 directed and did a more than superb job with the play. It was outstanding.

 

Anyway, as most of y’all readers know, I’m gay. I’m fine saying that. I’m gay. The show sent me back to my sophomore and junior years of high school before I came out of the closet and reminded me of all the jocks who’d call me a fag or a fairy or even just gay. My high school years weren’t great because of what I dealt with at an all-boys’ Catholic school. Anyway, the show very visually reminded me of what I thought I’d put behind me (turns out I hadn’t or totally haven’t), and I began to cry. A lot. I went up to Margaret at the end of the show and started crying and we had to sit in the theatre for a bit while I got my act together.

 

Upon thinking more and more about the show and my emotional experience, I realized I wasn’t crying out of sadness or because I was having these flashbacks to the halls of Chaminade being pushed into locker every day by one particular kid or overhearing one particularly nasty conversation about me, but because I realized how I’ve changed since sophomore and junior years of high school. Since coming out, I’m happier and I’m more confident and more honest with myself and with those around me. I had a tough time, but I stuck it out with the help of my friends and family who fully supported me when I came out.

 

The main message I can pull from this blog post is this:

 

Prospective students, I’m sure some of you out there are struggling with your sexuality and other things like that. I did. I think we all do at some point. And if any of you are having issues with being bullied for embracing yourself, I need you to know that things will be great for you. (I don’t want to resort to the cliche and say It Gets Better, even thought it does.) Especially here at Skidmore, which is an extremely open and accepting campus. You need to push through the sucky years of high school to get to everything after, which is fantastic.

 

Don’t worry.

 

Measure in Love,

 

Kevin Berry

 

About Kevin Berry

jamba juice. mennonite. enneagram.
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