"Sometimes they come out so gay, they're flaming."
This was the joke my mother said to our family members when they decided that their opinion mattered in someone else's marriage.
I remember listening in as my body curled around Gatsby, as my uncle says "They can have a partnership if they want, but don't call it marriage. That is a holy thing."
I couldn't help but wonder when marriage became synonymous with religious. Sitting in City Hall to get a marriage licence only feels like church because of those perfect identical rows. But it's far less filled with bigotry these days, I have noticed.
Marriage, they say, is suppose to be holy; so let me tell you this: If given the chance I will treat your body like a chapel. I will praise you every Sunday from dawn to dusk with the lips I use to pray. On my knees while you scream out to God. I hope that is holy enough to please them.
I want to love like my grandmother, who loved a woman like Joseph loved Mary. Someone so imperfect, so human, brave enough to love someone who already knows God. But they were never allowed in a church as they truly are, these two women, who helped raise my mother. It makes me think how much a child can betray someone's memory.
I sat there curled around Gatsby, thinking how this family raised me to be nice and quiet, but on Sunday all I hear is noise. Screams to God for forgiveness for their sins. But I am not screaming with them. I know that God cannot be found in a congregation, but in the humanity of another.
Love sounds a lot like God these days, and I hope that my love is enough for you.