So, I got married Good Friday to my partner of the past ten years. Leading up to the day, I kept being asked how I felt and was I excited and my answer, much to everyone’s consternation, was always the same…not really. Now let me explain, I want to break this down from my viewpoint so it won’t ever need to be asked of me again. As I have stated in previous posts, this is not because of any lack of love for Johni, my real “Ride or Die Chick”. It’s more because of having to face the rejection from my blood family because of my “chosen lifestyle”.
Although I put on a brave face for the public, I don’t like rejection either and I have spent years learning how to erect the wall before the fiery darts hit me. Fiery darts in the form of hurtful words or sentiments regarding my life, not lifestyle but life. Gay is who I am. Puberty did not arrive and I suddenly had to make a choice about girls or boys, I always loved women. Period. A Believer in the Most High is also who I am and who I have always been. These two things are NOT mutually exclusive, despite what those who don’t get it think. Trust me when I tell you that God and I have had innumerable conversations about this topic over the years and we’re good with the current situation.
First off, I never really had any concern with the concepts of marriage or children. I considered myself way to impetuous to be laden down with either. That may be selfish, but as they say, “To Thine Own Self Be True”. Plus, being gay, I never imagined that these things would be part of my life equation. Marriage JUST became legal in the past few years, so I’m trippin when people keep saying, “It’s about time”. Like I was holding back on making her an “honest woman” or something. Honestly, it wasn’t on my radar when we initially got together. Plus, none of my “model couple” friends, who have been committed for over 20 years are married and they are extremely blessed. I figured we were good. My emphasis has always been on making the actual relationship work and the ceremony/celebration can come afterwards. I know quite a few couples, both hetero and gay who did all the pomp and circumstance and still ended up crashing and burning in fiery separations. At first I even resented the push from friends to get married because I felt like I already was. I mean a relationship is work. Like Common said in “The Light”, “You know I ain’t the type to walk around with matchin’ shirts
If relationship is effort I will match your work”. I felt like once I said “Hey, let’s build something together”, I was all in. I didn’t think a piece of paper would change anything about the effort I was investing into this relationship. I didn’t need the validation of the government when I knew that God put us together, because we have both been consulting Him all along. Anyway, this was just the top layer of reasoning. The root was even deeper.
I didn’t even want to deal with the real reason for my reluctance. I had to let the blunt cry for me on this one. I was forced to face the facts during my conversation with my sister-in-law yesterday. She texted me to confirm that I indeed got married on Good Friday and why didn’t I tell anyone in the family. Once the answer formed in my brain and the words were typed, the old wound was reopened. “Why? nobody in the family wanted to attend so…”. Then of course the phone call ensued and I had to explain my position to her. Once I heard myself verbalize the complete answer, the bleeding was unstoppable. I refused to let my voice crack when explaining how I wanted to avoid the painful rejection of realizing that my sententious siblings couldn’t set aside their views to celebrate my happiness with me. Although I have and always will consistently support their life events and their children’s events…simply because I love them and we are blood. If religion is the reason then let me point out the hypocrisy. Even Jesus hung out with sinners. Like Jadakiss said on Rapture, “If you ain’t God it ain’t in your actions to judge It is what it is turns into it was what it was”.
In my opinion, what is being conveyed when family chooses not to support me because of my “lifestyle” is that we’re cool but you really think I’m going to hell because I am gay and you want to distance yourself from that. Also, I’m great to eat and joke with, I’m good to babysit my nieces and nephews but not good enough to celebrate my type of love. As if celebrating me finding someone to love me unconditionally, just as you all did, will contaminate you somehow. But, it’s fine, because I forgive you and I made peace with this a long time ago. It was just hard reopening old wounds that I thought had scabbed over permanently. I have been to a few gay weddings where the situation was similar. All the supportive friends gather around the happy couple but the unspoken pain of no family members being present is palpable. I guess that’s why real family is more than who shares your DNA. This is also why there is an LGBTQ community, to hold each other up for life events such as this. I never wanted to be that couple, but now that it’s been done and I survived, I have reached another level of freedom. I’ve also reached another level of faith, because you know God always has that ram in the bush.
Connecting with my Cayonne family has been one of the best things to happen to me in my life. The unconditional love from all of them, from Trinidad to Toronto to Cali and NYC, has been so affirming. They all met me and accepted me for exactly who I am, along with my life partner, my wife, no questions asked. None of them are gay, as far as I know, yet there was no judgment about my “lifestyle”. No judgment, only respect and love, as it should be. I even discovered new family members living right here in Maryland who despite meeting me only back in February have embraced and supported me thoroughly. The circumstances of our meeting were so random that only God could have orchestrated this blessing. Shout out to Auntie Eastlynne, James and Regine.
God is so awesome that even when I didn’t know how to celebrate the blessing of love that He hooked me up with, He sent friends and family to show me how. I will be forever grateful for this. Now that I’ve had this wedding ring on for the past few days, I admit that I smile whenever I see the glint on my left hand. Saying “my wife” is getting more natural rolling off my tongue. The best part has been receiving well wishes from people I didn’t even know were watching on social media. As I am learning, it’s the kind words and small gestures that mean the most in life…these things give me life. So, the next time you want to skip a family member’s gay wedding because you don’t support the “lifestyle”, please consider putting aside to your beliefs to show unconditional love, you know, like the Jesus you believe in said to do. Until next time, Peace and Blessings.