Some of you will relate while others will be surprised to know that each and every time I reach for my partner’s hand in public, or he reaches for mine, a feeling of doubt, of fear, of apprehension creeps up inside me. Sometimes the fear is stronger than other times. Sometimes I feel brave, other times I don’t and I feel ashamed of my fear. That such a simple gesture of caring has – in the wiring of my brain – been paired with feelings of fear is difficult. It is perpetually confusing and always will be.
If you’ve been anywhere near the media or social media this past month, you’ll know that January has been characterized by extremes. You’re thinking Trump, of course – we all are – but locally for my city there was also a ruling made by Pride Toronto in regards to Black Lives Matter that pushed everyone to one side of two coins (for or against?). Then this past week in Quebec terrible news of the shooting has affected all of us deeply. And now our prime minister has just backed down on one of his primary platform promises: electoral reform.
Are we in the middle of a meltdown (along with the polar ice caps)? It sure feels like it sometimes. I’ll admit that my mind began to wander on the subway last night as I was crammed into a tin can with a bunch of people (How will I get out of here if the shit hits the fan?) – and I can only make a vain attempt at imagining what the person sitting beside might have been feeling, a young Muslim girl.