A PanAfricanist Queer Womanist Collective
Recently, I spent some time with my entire extended family for the first time in more than ten years. It’s not that I don’t like them, it’s just that we don’t really see, experience and live reality in uhmmm ‘compatible’ ways the vast majority of the time…
As expected some of it was dead annoying. The fact that my long-term loving relationship was completely invisiblized in the way the pictures were set up, in the sleeping arrangements, in the introductions, and in pretty much all the conversations, especially that one where I was told they know it’s my decision and all, and it’s not like they’re homophobic or anything, but what would Jesus do? (it was phrased a little differently but I always start going “la-la-la-lady-gaga-ra-ra-ra” at the ‘but’ part of these type of statements. You should try it, it works).
I’ve been a real idiot to stay away so long too.
Apart from the fact that what annoys me so very much comes from fear.
A powerful thing, sure, but it always means I should rather feel sorry for them rather than angry, because it must be very very hard to go through life feeling like everyone’s out to get you.
Stupid, but hard.
Isn’t it just the weirdest thing that people can get so unsettled, horrified even by people who do their gender in ways that doesn’t fall within the expected gender markers? What is the big deal about the boy who is into doing the floral arrangements for dinner in his pink shirt, and the girl with short hair and baggy jeans who is far more interested in science than in the joys of baking? Instead of focusing so much on whether someone is good at being a ‘woman’ or a ‘man’, and devote large parts of entire lives devoted to the hooking up of the right ‘woman’ with the right ‘man’ (and be so blinded by this quest that all the other options are missed out on), wouldn’t it be far, far, faaaar better for all involved to spend more time and effort focusing on what makes a person a good human being? Focus a little more on those often neglected things, like say, I don’t know… compassion, ethics, pleasure, kindness, caring, fun?
And that’s exactly why I’d been an idiot to stay away for so long. Even though I really do suck at being a stereotypical woman, and to everyone’s immense horror find women generally, and dating women specifically far, far more exciting and hot than men, I am really actually pretty good at being a decent human being. That nephew in the pink shirt doing the floral arrangements and being relentlessly teased because of it, and the cousin who is more into books than boys should see that it is just fine to not follow rules that don’t make sense to them, and there most certainly isn’t only just One Right Thing to want in life.
Sure the lame-assed jokes, and the men outside by the fire, women fussing around in the kitchen script still drives me at least seven assorted kind of nuts, but hey, afterwards I get to go home to my gorgeous girlfriend and strange doggies, I know who and what makes me happy, and that’s quite a big achievement, no?