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Somewhere over the rainbow

Hi All,

Happy Pride Month! I hope everyone is celebrating and enjoying their respective pride festivals and parades. Me? Oh I can't celebrate or enjoy pride as I'm fasting, and that has been the case for every year since I accepted my sexuality and myself.

It started a few years ago when I finally accepted myself. At that time I wasn't thinking about the community, more so myself and the journey I had made, decisions I took and the revelation that came before me. Of course I knew before that I was gay, but only after I accepted myself did I really feel truly happy about it all. I made a promise then to try and integrate more with the gay community (I mean how else would I find the one right?). That meant going to gay clubs and actually being gay (lol), trying out the apps (yes we all have at some point), dating, being 'out' in public (within reason, there are still people in my life who I feel don't need to know), coming out to my sister etc. The list goes on. One of the things I wanted to do was go to London Pride. I had seen it happen throughout the years when I was closeted and never went. It didn't appeal to me then, maybe because I felt I was being a fraud for being in the closet yet wanting to 'celebrate' my homosexuality. But after I came out I wanted to experience it.

So I got all excited for what would have been my first pride, but then quickly realised that I would be fasting at that time and wouldn't be able to go. I then worked it out and realised that I chose the worst time to come out and want to go pride. I would be fasting for the next three years when June came rolling around. So every year since I accepted myself I have had to be vigilant and wait until there would be a time where I wouldn't be fasting and could actually go. Last year in response to the tragedy in Orlando there was a big gay iftaar event (where muslims and other faiths could come together and open a fast). Unfortunately I didn't hear about that until the day after the event and one that is happening this year is on the last day of fasting (a time where we typically spend together as a family and prepare for the celebrations the next day). This year however pride is after Ramadan finishes! This is great as I can finally go to the parade, but alas luck is never on my side as its the weekend we are celebrating my twin nephews birthday.

So I come to the same conjuncture as before. I can't go this year, but next year I am making sure I go. No matter what I will ensure I will go to pride as I'm fascinated to see what its like. I hope it lives up to expectation, but even if it doesn't I still want to experience it.

So to anyone who hasn't been and can go to a pride parade in their hometown I would say go, as you never know if you will be able to go to the next one, and don't want to live with regrets. Celebrate your sexuality and take comfort in the fact other people there are in similar situations to yourself.

I can't wait for 2018!



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