At 4:15 today, I was meeting with a guy who's going to be repairing my facility's air conditioner, and I was climbing ladders and peeking into air ducts, talking about filters and water intake and other stuff I am qualified approximately 0% to talk about. I was mentally thinking about the schedules I have to write and the three new people I'm going to hire. I was thinking about going home and taking a nap followed by dozing on the couch followed by sleep and more napping.
I was expecting my employees to come in and the night manager to take over and possibly considering pizza for dinner - because after working almost 40 hours in 3 days, fuck calories - but I wasn't even considering the possibility of 4:15pm.
At 4:15, I received a text message that read:
Papi... It's passed.
Side note: I think that a über fierce Maleficent-style faery comes down and blesses the chosen few with extra sass. That's how little gaylings are born. Drag, baby. Draaaaag.
But, today, I stopped dead in my tracks. I was confused and befuddled. Bemused. Because, I grew up in Texas...spent almost 23 years of my life there...and I grew up with the understanding that I was never going to get married. In fact, that mindset so stuck in my subconscious that it affected my dating habits. I took relationships less seriously, because there was only so far they could go. But, not marriage. Never marriage. That happened in Massachusetts, and that was it.
Then it happened in California... Until it didn't, and I learned that just because you're told you have a right, doesn't mean someone in a suit can't take it away from you. You learn things when you're part of a minority. You learn that someone is supposed to tell you when and if you're allowed to be on a sports team or whether you'll be successful in a career, whether you get to visit the person you love in the hospital or whether you'll be relegated to a waiting room as they draw their final breath. You learn that men in suits somewhere have more power over your inheritance than you do; simply because you want to leave your life's wealth to your beloved it doesn't mean that's what is going to happen.
Like everybody I have seen things allegedly changing on television for people with pleasant faces and good lawyers in states that I don't reside.
It happens in Massachusetts. It happens in New York. It happens in California, sometimes, and in places where it doesn't matter to me. Supposedly, somewhere, there's the Milk and Honey laden land of two men or two women holding hands with matching bands and maybe there are kids or dogs or IKEA furniture. Or all of it. But, it's all a watercolor dreamscape. It's a movie. It's Queer As Folk.
Because I'm from Texas and I know that things like that won't happen to me.
And then 4:15 today, I was told that the Illinois House passed the marriage equality bill. I was sent congratulatory messages and all sorts of excitement and shared joy. But, I didn't feel it. I couldn't feel it. It wasn't stunned into non-feeling; it was trepidation that I might get my hopes up only to have them dashed by the vote in the Senate. Or the governor. Or some man in a suit somewhere who didn't want to say that today was the day.
Then the Senate affirmed. And we're waiting for the governor who has said he'll sign the bill.
And just like that I'm in the watercolor pipe dream, and I'm thinking June sounds good for a wedding, but May sounds better. I'm thinking about matching bands and that I have enough fur children, but wouldn't a little blonde haired boy be perfect in our second room?
I cannot tell you how many tears I've shed writing this. How many tears I've shed leading up to this. How many false starts and false hopes I've had. How many times I've given up, only to hope again.
Then 4:15pm happened, and the world's landscape has changed. It's not sunk in. At all. Maybe when one more man in a suit swishes his pen. Maybe when we can start issuing licenses. Maybe when the first wedding pictures make their way around the internet. Maybe when they're my pictures. Maybe then it will sink in. For now, I'm going to be in the space of surprise and disbelief and hope and elation.
Love and Lyte,