I brought my mother and brother to the beach yesterday. Nothing special, really, except that my mother joined me on the Sayoni beach outing. Just before that, my girlfriend and I had joined her at Novena church – a place I haven’t stepped into in 15 years.
My mother went on to exchange make-up tips with my love, picked out girly clothes she thinks I ought to wear, and lamented that the child I adopted isn’t here in Singapore yet. She treated my girlfriend and herself to fancy henna artwork in Little India.
My brother, whom I am extremely proud of, is a straight man who treats my girlfriend like a member of the family, offering to buy her durian rolls and escorting her around when I am preoccupied.
I have no qualms about leaving my brother in a room full of women-loving women and trust him to honour and respect them. Neither do I have to worry about my mother, who graciously said yes when a woman asked her to dance when visiting me in the States. This is the woman who has seen me through shaved heads and long curls, binders and D-cup bras. She has met my past girlfriends and always knew which ones are crazy and which ones are good.
Now, she has grown feeble and is not in good health, but she still picks out psychedelic clothes for me with much zest and her voice still resonates when she yells at me for wearing jeans to church.
Before I met my current girlfriend, I went through three years of solitude. My mother actually sat me down, enquired whether I intended to be single for a long time and even told me to get someone – female or not. She did not want me to be all alone.
She has come a long, long way since I first came out sixteen years ago and I am fortunate to have her.
To all mothers, let us not forget their Happy Mother’s Day!