sarasvati: Greyscale image of Sae, from Hidamari Sketch (happy)
Today was Saint John's Pride Parade, and for the second time in my life, I marched in it. There would have been more than two times, I assure you, but it nearly always managed to fall on a day that I was working, and it doesn't advertise as much as it ought to so I usually find out when it's too late to request the day off.

Anyway, I ended up taking part in the bit of the parade that we were told "everybody's going to be waiting for." The "Santa Claus" of the Pride Parade. Helping to carry the enormous 30x50 foot flag. No, seriously, it really was that huge. At one point, I believe there were nearly 30 people helping to hold it above the ground. I was one of the ones in the front, carrying it for around an hour, arms above my head and feet already sore from walking around and doing things yesterday.

It didn't help that I've been having a bad lung week because my asthma meds were running out.

But I managed, though the whole thing got off to a bad start. I was disappointed before I even began, as last week my mother had said she'd come to march with me, and I found out yesterday that she had forgotten about the whole thing and made plans to (surprise, surprise) have a coffee with my father. I should be used to that, really, but every time I get my hopes up and every time I'm disappointed. Same thing happened last year when I was doing my first bit of acting since chorus roles in the high school musicals I used to be in. She said she'd come, then supposedly stayed up too long talking on the phone with my father and then fell asleep and didn't wake up until it was almost over, or so she said. She manages to find a way out of just about everything in my life that means something to me.

I kept hoping that maybe I'd see her face in the crowd, but every time I'd have that thought, I'd know that I was deluding myself and would nearly start to cry. Rei knew something was up, but thankfully didn't press the matter. He knows it bothered me, but I don't think he knows quite how much.

But in the end, I laughed and smiled and had a good time, in spite of all the emotional crap. With the sun beating down on my face and my arms and feet hurting, it somehow made everything I was representing seem that much more meaningful. I was helping to promote awareness and acceptance of diversity and awesomeness, and that was worth a little bit of pain and discomfort. When cars honked, I waved and cheered, even if my throat hurt, because it meant something good was happening. I really felt proud, not just of the fact that I participated, but of everyone who showed support, and of everyone I know who's gay or transexual or genderqueer or any flavour of diverse. I'm proud that they're themselves. I'm proud that I'm proud of that. I'm proud that I no longer feel such shame in myself that I can display my pride with a smile and a wave and a cheer and a ginormous rainbow flag. I'm lucky to live in an age where all that is so much more accepted than in the past, and if it means that I go through some sore muscles now so that people learn not to beat their gay kids or shun their trans friends, then so be it!


sarasvati: A white lotus flower floating on water. (Default)

August 2011

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