You know how most people get through challenges?
They count on the strength of other people around them.
Sometimes that’s very clear, but often this taking strength is hidden. There may be some healing hidden in the bedroom, there may be a memory of a time when someone believed in them, there may even be the knowledge that when they get through this someone will be waiting.
Today, the call to transgender is a call to the individual. It’s not a call to be like the rest of the crowd, but rather a call to follow your own nature, your own heart, your own essence, your own acorn against the expectations of the crowd.
It wasn’t always thus. In many cultures, the call to transgender was a call to service, a call to live in the liminal space and serve the community by being a window, a bridge, a conduit, a messenger. Living between worlds was the calling of a shaman, and that shaman helped everyone by keeping the energy flowing, the light beaming, and the drumming in harmony across the rivers, walls and canyons we often feel separate us from nature, from others, from God.
Stigma is the technique society uses for inhibiting behavior that challenges the status quo. Stigma works by cutting us off from others so that every step is a slog, and we can never build up speed, we only get more tired.
Stigma cuts us off from the strength of other people, cuts us off from community and leaves us alone. Often our response to stigma is to try to stigmatize others so that we can be inside the normativity by pushing others outside.
What I ache for is the ability to count on the strength of other people. What other people ache for most often seems to be some level of comfort within the status quo. That’s a different goal indeed.
“For tomorrow, I have to sing, to sing, to sing.”
Andrea Bocelli, GMA, 8 Feb 2006
No human is an island. To sing we need the support of others.
And I don’t have any idea where to find that.