Sunday, July 3, 2011

Adam and Steve

We are on the Metro North train headed into the Big Apple for our family vacation and we find out it's also Gay Pride weekend. Later that day our friend tells us that New York just approved gay marriage the day before. The Gay Pride parade is going to be one helluva party!

Images flash into my mind from when I was in college and lived on the lower West Side on 11th street and the Hudson River, right in the heart of the "Gay Section". Men in nothing but banana hammock thong underwear and cowboy chaps, their muscular butts waggling in the air for all to see, shaved bare chested men with rainbow skivvies, dancing as free as could be on top of floats, kissing each other, shouting, hugging, cheering, loving themselves and their life. A celebration of who they are....sprinkled with nudity, some cross dressing and rainbows everywhere. How would I explain this to my three sons? What would an 8, 6 and 2 year old think of all that?

I went to fashion design school at Parsons when I was 17. Some of my very first friends were gay designers. Three out of the four men I remember in my dorm were gay and they became my best friends. I loved them because of their full self expression. I loved their perspective of women, their adoring fever they embodied when they talked about Diana Ross, Susan Summer or Liz Taylor. They were not attracted to women, but they loved and admired them deeply. I loved how they taught me to "Be Fierce" and to "Work it"...when we danced at nightclubs in our silver hot shorts. We would dress up like crazy club kids, in costumes of sorts, that we created from what we had, vintage clothes, cut up jewelry, feather boas, red monkey fur, mesh stockings...and we would waltz to the front of the line of the club, that was two blocks long, and get let right in. It was their bravado, their confidence, their creativity and love for living life fully that had me step up and be that fully expressed bold woman. I owned being a woman because of them. I love gay men.

So when my mother's boyfriend later commented, on the comfort of his deck, drinking a beer with his family, "I don't believe in gay marriage. God made Adam and EVE not Adam and Steve."...I was saddened by the closed perspective.
My sister spoke up and sad "But if Adam and Steve want to get married it doesn't bother me or affect my marriage." Yea, Chi.
I agreed and piped in "Yep. Nothing anyone else does or says can diminish what Todd and I have. We are married because we say so. I support people loving each other."

I thought about it more later...on the way home from NYC, in the train where two lesbians sat next two us and a few gay men dashed by shouting loudly, definitely proud. We didn't end up having to explain men in chaps to our boys, because we mostly did museums and parks uptown, near where we stayed, but if I did need to explain it I would have been straightforward and happy to.

What I got clear on is that Yes, maybe God or the universe made Adam for Eve and Eve for Adam. Maybe that is the way it was intended...if you look at it from a body part and procreation perspective.
AND the fact is that there are, right now, and have been for thousands of years, many Adams and Steve couples and Eve and Ellas. That is a fact. There are lots of gay people who love each other, they are huge and integral part of our society and contribute an enormous amount of creativity and power. And they want to get married so they can honor their love. They also get to visit each other in the hospital and inherit and properly care for whatever estate they have worked all their lives to accumulate. They get to share in health care, bank accounts and insurance etc. as well. They get to be MARRIED and have the importance of those words of commitment.

Whether one agrees with that or not, it occurred to me that in life, things don't always go as we intend them. What makes it stressful or an issue of conflict is when we make it WRONG. So we want a sunny birthday? Then it rains? The stress is not in the rain. The stress is that we make it wrong.
So our original idea of marriage is a man and a women? So relationships are supposed to be heterosexual? Well not all are. So what? Can we just accept that and be with that and support love and honor to be created? Or do we have to make it wrong so we can feel RIGHT and superior?
The problem with Equal Rights is that there is a RIGHT and a WRONG. When in fact, like the rain, nothing is right or wrong unless we make it so. If we take a look at why we need to be right about something, maybe we wouldn't feel like things in the world are wrong.

I am committed to teaching my sons about the diversity, wonder and love in the world.
Of course I would love for them to be heterosexual and have a wife and kids, but I have no fear if they are not. My dear friends Keith, Scott and Casey taught me how much there is to celebrate in being human, man or woman, no matter what your sexual preference is.

I am also committed to guide them in being the kind of people that when something doesn't go the way we intend in life in general, to not make it wrong, but to accept what is so, to create newly and to be fully self expressed and encourage others to be free and fully self expressed. And if they end up on a float in rainbow skivvies with their husbands in the process,more Power to 'em!

Zen Honeycutt

1 comment:

  1. I love this, Zen! You are so eloquent and expressed. AND I'm definitely touched, moved and inspired :)