It’s been pretty clear from the outset that my little dude was going to be a stand-alone – the opener, main attraction and encore of this particular lollapalooza. Part of me would love for him to have siblings, but he has cousins close in both geography and age, and we’ve got a massive extended found family with larval humans at all stages, so I think he’ll be covered.
But so, in the absence of other kids in the house, and since we don’t do daycare, we try to get him out and around his peers. And, invariably, in a room of toddlers, somebody always waddles up and takes whatever my man was playing with. And I want to smash them. Teeth clench, fists form, appropriately savage lines are recalled from the Godfather movies at the unbridled injustice of a 2 year old who barely has the capacity to understand that other people exist taking a rubber gorilla from my son. How dare she.
I take stuff from him all the time. Cell phones, laptops, condoms (we live on Lake St, folks). But if a moderately advanced infant with no concept of propriety or balance or the Native American views on ownership wants to share the dude’s toys I am inspired to violence.
Such is the bond between father and son.
Earlier this year there was a letter making the rounds on the interwebs from a father disowning his gay son. The letter was posted by the son.
There was, of course, an outpouring of support for the son. Which is as it should be. This isn’t something straight people have to think about, really. Unless your family is Crazy Backwoods Baptist and you come out to them as a Hindu or something. But that’s not what I’m writing about tonight.
I couldn’t get the father in this situation out of my head. I can’t get my head around the tragedy of this.
It needs to be understood that I come from a Clan. Not an officially recognized Scottish Clan in the tartan parade at the renaissance fair, not a vampire clan, though I do sparkle in the sun. No, an off-the-boat Irish-no-really-have-another-sandwich clan. It’s not something I understood until I started dating, how tight my family is. The amount of unspoken communication that I do without thinking must have been positively confounding to girlfriends.
But blood is thick with us. No matter what, the family’s there. Whether it’s your fault or not, your corner is fought, your grudges are remembered. We’re like Sicilians with much worse food
All this to say that if my son killed somebody, I’d hide him. It will never happen and I should work a few more jokes into this to make sure it can’t be used in court, but for real, if he came to me talking like the beginning of Bohemian Rhapsody, I would drive to Brazil with him wearing a fake mustache under a blanket of Dorito wrappers in the backseat.
I mean, if he killed someone. Murder. In blood of any temperature. And though I am a certified Martial Arts nerd, I truly believe violence to be a disease (try giving me some whiskey and getting me to talk about that paradox! Better take the month off). I believe that life is sacred and singular and justice is universal and yet, if my son offed somebody I’d chuck all that and do everything in my power to keep him from harm.
Needless to say, with all this, how somebody could write off their own child just because he was gay is utterly, obscenely incomprehensible to me.
How could you let something so small as a god separate you from your blood, from your child that trusted in you as you trust in the earth under your feet? The bible and tradition and blah blah, this is your son. This is your connection to the future. This is you, your blood, your organs, the life and dreams you poured into him. How could you willingly cut yourself off from him? I can’t even be angry. I am so sorry for you, sir. I weep for your stupid, stupid loss.