The 14th of February is a day when everyone – even single people, remember. So everyone remembers that they love someone or they are loved by someone; all kinds of love are celebrated and remembered.
It is a day covered in sickeningly sticky, googey sweet love.
Some have adapted the day and we remember there are all kinds of unconventional ways to love and to be loved. The trick though is they all have to fit into the narrow heterosexual understandings of love that does not make other people (especially family) uncomfortable.
The one (unwritten) requirement of Valentine’s Day is that you have to be normal. The love is conditional. Against the grain of pop culture convention (this surprises no one Am I right?) which insists that love is unconditional; love is fraught with conditions.
One of them is “be normal”.
But with everything that is universally celebrated it serves as a reminder of the alienation those excluded from the celebrations feel.
I came out to my mother in December 2013 – yes that is last year, thanks for noticing. Tears blurring my vision I declared I had lost the fight with this strange thing.
I told her that I had prayed and begged god to change me, to cleanse me of this queer thing, but she would have none of it.
So today I am remembering the day I lost a part of my mother. The day she lost a part of her daughter and the work we still have to do to get to a place where we can celebrate our love again.
I miss my mum and I’m sure she’ll miss the daughter I used to be.