Love & Hope With Thomas Harris
We’ve partnered with upcoming film Boy Erased to CHOOSE LOVE. 15% of purchase proceeds of our exclusive Classic Key Cord CHOOSE LOVE Key Necklace will go towards the LGBT Center's youth homelessness program. To recognize Spirit Day, we caught up with Thomas Harris to tell us about his journey out of homelessness. For Thomas, being homeless wasn’t hopeless but rather a drive to rebuild. Thomas Harris is one of LA’s most sought-after yoga instructors, but for Thomas, life wasn’t always in a peaceful state of motion. From coming out as a gay man and navigating homelessness as a young adult, Thomas shares his trials and triumphs. My journey through life has been paved with many obstacles that I have had the opportunity to overcome. I’ve drawn massive amounts of success from the challenges I have faced. I’m 29 years old and the life I live today looks nothing like the mess it once was in my earlier years. I LOVE sharing my story with others with the hope that it might help people who are currently in the same predicaments that I once was. I came out of the closet as gay when I was 15 years old and it has taken a lot of hard work and effort to get to a place where I fully accepted myself as a gay man.At the age of 23 I ended up homeless due to a long bout of drug addiction and alcoholism. When I arrived in Los Angeles from Laguna Beach I had no place to live, I couldn't stop doing drugs and drinking, I was dying on the inside and my physical health was deteriorating. I was extremely sick and had no idea who I was or where I was going and I was completely lost as a person. The LGBT Center saved my life during that time by helping me into a homeless shelter, providing me with food, and helping me get into the Van Ness Recovery House in Hollywood that put me on the path to recovery that I’m currently on today.I have no idea what I would have done had I not had the help I received from the LGBT Center and I am forever grateful for what they did for my life. Being in that position was scary and I can honestly say that I’m lucky to be alive after all of the self-harm and horrible experiences I went through as an addict.Today I’m clean and sober, I work as a full-time yoga instructor and I am connected spiritually to the people and world around me. I have traveled the world in recovery, and my life couldn't be any better than it is today.I believe it is so important to create connections outside of family that provide the LOVE and support that we all need.For anyone who has been rejected by their loved ones for being gay, my advice is to seek help and counseling to deal with the pain of losing the support of their family and friends and to immediately start seeking a chosen family that will support and LOVE them for who they are.I was able to overcome so many obstacles with the help of recovery programs, my family and friends. Through much soul searching, I was able to sort through the internal pain and self-hatred I used to have for myself.I hope that in sharing my story people will feel inspired to look deep inside for the strength that we all possess to make those big change: To accept themselves for who they are, to reach out and help someone in need, and to know that it’s okay to be gay and LOVE themselves for who they are.