I was at a little cocktail party at my neighbour’s house on a rainy weekday evening, and then this really attractive woman walked in, late, her long hair slightly mussed, but her make-up was perfect. She apologised charmingly and said it was her partner’s fault that she was late, because her partner wasn’t feeling well. “Alex had the sniffles and I had to play Mummy before I could leave. I confess, I was tempted to pop a cat litter pellet in the whisky toddy!” She rolled her eyes and we all laughed.
Later, I found myself in the kitchen with her.
“I know what you mean, men are dreadful, aren’t they? Can’t handle being sick at all. Mine is like that, too,” I said to her, smiling, just to make a conversation.
She gave me a cold look. “Alex is my wife.”
Oh dear, a faux pas.
I think we were all tipsy by then, for she (quite unkindly, I thought) announced, “People, I have found the token straight in our midst!”
“Sorry, I didn’t realise this is a LGBT party,” I retorted.
“Honey, you poor thing. You are really straight, aren’t you? And by the way, it is not LGBT, but more.”
(FYI, the full and correct acronym is LGBTQQIP2SAA – do google it).
And so, I find myself at the centre of attention, being called upon to explain the joys of being a boring straight in a world of infinite possibilities.
Well, here’s the thing: I don’t think labels matter. I am a known heterosexual because I identify strongly with being a woman (childbirth, pregnancy, homemaking) and the person I desire so much happens to be a man. That’s why I am a boring hetero: I am into the maddening human being who happens to be a male.
Perhaps he says it more eloquently than I:
“Would you desire him if he’s a woman?” Someone asked.
Rhetoric question, but probably yes … if “she” has everything else the same, especially that sense of humour and strength. Not that he would make a pretty woman, I don’t think. Those who have seen him in drag cringed in horror.
So, joking aside, just love. Love is love, it’s gender-irrelevant if you truly love the person beyond the sex organs. Screw the labels. Burn instead with passion for the one you are making love with and delight in him/her. Because that’s what elevates common sex into wondrous love-making, when the “I”s and the “You”s become one, and the functioning tools are nothing more than a way to reach the soul within.
In Your district, where are “us” and “I,”
O You whose soul soars above “us” and “I,”
Who permeates with subtle spirit both man and woman?
When man and woman become one, You are that Unity.
You have created this “I” and “Us”
To play the game of adoration with Yourself;
All the “I”s and “You”s will become one single soul
And in the end melt into the Beloved.
– Jalal-ud-Din Rumi
(Translated by Andrew Harvey from A Year of Rumi)