I find I have been included in a most wondrous collective, and so felt it my duty to share it with you. Take a peek at this collection of the fascinating. I hope you meet some new friends, or at least follow a new stranger down their winding path.
Things have been getting a little serious, so here’s something I made earlier. These trainers were abandoned in the park for about a week – they were moved onto a wall, and a bench, by somebody, presumably to aid their original owner in spotting and reclaiming them. No sneaker-thieves round here, no sir. But nobody did, so one morning I did this with them:
They were gone the next day.
See what I did there? That was a pune, or play on words, because this post has nothing to do with campanology at all! Très drole. But it does have to do with change, and it does have to do with rings. My partner and I got unmarried last weekend.
When my partner and I started admitting to and exploring our different sexualities a few months ago, so much of who we thought we had been fell away. Our lives changed, we changed. I’ll spare you the details, but that change wasn’t, isn’t, always easy. I started a journal, and most of the pages are full of positive, excited things, but there are other pages smudged with tears that just have fuckfuckfuckIcan’tdothis written all over them. But I’ve sat with my feelings of hurt, of despair, of insecurity, and I’ve come out the other side a better, stronger person, and I know that I CAN do this. And that whatever “this” is, it’s totally worth the struggle. I had some good chats with my friend Allegra about this, who then wrote a great blog post about “The transformative nature of discomfort”. Well worth a gander.
Aside to this, I had been unhappy for a long while with my boring gold wedding band. I never wear gold, and I only wear pretty. It seemed to me to be less like jewellery and more like a badge, or a stripe of office – I’m married to someone, I’m taken, I’m a respectable traditionalist and allowed to have children. I’m not saying this is what I think when I see someone else wearing one – I love all you marrieds out there, I want to give you a squishy hug and bake you a cake full of rainbows and smiles; I’m just saying this is how I felt I had been labelled.
Anyway, I digress.
I can’t believe I haven’t written about this before. I have a daughter. A wonderful, clever, funny, beautiful daughter. When she was two she was bitten by a dog (our dog, and probably mostly our fault, but I still don’t want to talk about it, thanks.). She has been left with permanent scars on her face, but no worse, and thanks to some impromptu puppy therapy, no scars on her heart either. In fact, since she was about four she has been begging us to get her a dog. Begging! As parents, let me tell you that the scars left on our hearts, our conscience, our confidence, were huge. So we got her stuffed toy dogs, and hoped she’d grow out of it. Yeah right. When she was eight she was going to the library and getting out as many books about dogs, and how to look after your dog, as she could carry. When she was ten she decided she wanted to be a vet, and work for a dog rescue charity. When she was eleven, she started dragging me out to a local animal shelter so we could walk their dogs. And when she was twelve, we gave in. We got that girl a dog.
Life has been a bit of a drama recently, and I’ve not really talked to many people about it, so I thought I would write a few things down for your delectation and delight. I suspect you may read this post with the same horrified fascination with which the Romans used to watch the latest Lions vs. Christians Smackdown, but maybe you’ll enjoy it and get some good thought-food out of it.
I’ll give you some bullet points as a primer, then some more detail. Are you ready? You don’t have to take notes, it’s OK.
- Came out as queer
- Partner retaliated by also coming out as queer (but not as queer as me, ha. I win)
- Decide to open our marriage to waifs and strays
- Spend so much time talking and loving and talking we end up with serious sleep deprivation
- Invoices go unpaid so we have to raid savings to cover bills
- Have to cancel planned festival holiday because we now have no money
- Black depression and bitter disappointment in one party, and not just from the holiday cancellation
- Other party cancels fun plans to look after aforementioned party
- Shower breaks, but too soon after other major plumbing work to comfortably ask landlord to fix it
- Shit just goes wrong, OK?
- Shit goes right, depression banished, invoices start getting paid
- One party has massive meltdown as relief sets in
- Open relationship going even better than expected
So, early in April, I came to the scary realisation that I am bisexual. I’m not a teenager, just starting to explore my emotions, and worrying what my parents might think, I am a grown woman, emotionally mature (quiet, you), married for nearly 15 years, thinking Why Now? and WTF? and worrying what my children might think.
So, I took Boy Wonder to an IDAHOT celebration today, and we picked up this:
He studied it a bit, then tugged on my sleeve and said Mum, this isn’t right – look, they’ve got blue for boys and pink for girls. Isn’t that a bit sexist?
That’s right ladies and gentlemen (and everyone in between!), my nine year old is criticising LGBT literature for gender stereotyping. Watch this boy, he will go far!