Thursday evening, B.D. Wong was at the University of North Texas as part of their annual Diversity and Equity Conference. I was only planning on going to the presentation, but my boss asked if I was interested in attending the dinner first (a small affair), and I decided that it might be fun. It was!
As for the presentation itself, I had heard that B.D. was not a great presenter, and while he appears to be more comfortable when his words have been scripted, he spoke to the crowd as if it was just a small group of people in his living room. The rawness of his talk gave an insight into the man that was sitting in front of this group, as he shifted – at times, almost uncomfortably – around on his stool (at one point he was kneeling on this rotating stool, as if it were an overstuffed reading chair).
Part of his presentation focused on how he became more comfortable with who he was. One of the comments that he made was how there are so many components within a person’s being, that the secret was to create a balance within your own self, and have all these elements synchronize with each other. Each element needed to be an accepted, and welcomed, part of the self prior to obtaining this balance.
I’m not sure why, but this commentary really sunk in with me. It was confirming a belief that I have held for a long time, that not one part of me, actually defines who a person is. A person’s experiences, feelings, and thoughts are what makes a person, and these often define the types of roles that we take on during our lives.
I thoroughly enjoyed what was on offer, and am looking forward to tomorrow night’s presentation with Yolanda King.