All my life my children have been my world, the soul (and not that is not a spelling mistake) reason I exist. When I was young if you had asked me what I wanted to do with my life, the answer was to be a mother. I wanted 6 children and I was blessed with 4.
In August 2001 my heart broke when my eldest grand-daughter was involved in a car crash that left her with brain injuries and learning disabilities – I have blogged about this before and the impact it has had on my 2nd daughter's life.
In August last year my heart broke again when my eldest daughter gave birth to my grandson at around 17 weeks gestation, we never got to meet him, and though my daughter has taken huge steps to deal with her grief, I know that it is still there in the background, as it is in my heart too.
Then today I read this post on my youngest daughter’s facebook page and my heart broke again. (her words are here in italics)
I consider it a tiny part of who I am but the world continues to reference it as my defining characteristic. Whether I can marry the person I love or be a parent to the child who stole my heart depends not on the quality of my character but rather that I love someone of the same gender and sometimes it makes me wish that I wasn’t gay.
There is just something soul destroying about institutionalised, impersonal, legislative discrimination that I can’t put words to. I’m not just a number, I’m not my sexuality, I’m not trying to threaten or challenge anyone else’s lifestyle or thinking. I simply want to be able to marry my girlfriend and raise a child with her. I want the life that we dream of together and I can’t have that because people who don’t know me make decisions based on an element of who I am and of which I had no choice or control over. It invalidates me as a person and impedes my ability to dream of something all people should have the right to: a family.
And it frustrates me that I rarely give my sexuality a second thought. It’s really a tiny part of who I am but because it restricts my life in such ridiculous ways, I have to think about it. I have no choice about whether or not it is a big deal. Societal and governmental constructs dictate that it is. Fuck that noise. I want a quiet life with my wife and our kids. I never asked for anything but that and yet it’s constantly forced upon me by people who will never understand what it means to walk in my shoes, who will never understand what it means to feel second class or second rate, who will never question their ability to marry and have children but who consider a group of people a threat to society because they ask for the same privilege.
To a comment from a friend she wrote:
Thanks, and that’s at the heart of what I’m trying to say. I feel like in order to generate any change then I am forced to politicize my sexuality and I hate the idea of that. It shouldn't be a political issues to start with. To me, the things that the gay community agitates for are fundamental human rights. We should be able to take them for granted but instead we’re forced to fight for them at every turn.
I remember when I came out to my Mum, she cried and at first I thought I’d disappointed her in some way. When I asked her why she was upset she said it wasn’t because she was disappointed but that it was because she knew that my sexuality was going to make my life harder than it should be. I've never felt this was the case until now and to be honest, it hurts my heart.
It does more than hurt this Mother’s heart, it breaks it into little tiny pieces for there is little I can do other than offer my unconditional love and support.
No one should be defined by their sexuality, no one should have the right to stop anyone having happiness in their lives. No government, no religion, no person.