22 November 2010
Even They--And We--Get The Pronouns Wrong Sometimes
Today, I stepped into a store on my way from lunch with Bruce to an appointment with my opthamologist. (Dr. Noah Klein, one of the best in the business) I can't even remember the name of the store, or why I stopped in it. All I remember is something I saw on the TV behind the counter.
Someone was interviewing Cher, apparently for one of the TV news magazines. She was talking about her son Chaz, ne her daughter Chastity. It was hard not to admire her, as she admitted that it wasn't easy for her to take when Chastity said she was going to become Chaz. Coming from someone who, as she said, knew that something was "different" about her child long before she came out, and who's been an advocate of gay rights, that's quite an admission. But what I found just as revealing was when she called Chaz "she," caught herself and said, "I'm still having trouble with the pronouns."
Next time I talk to my mother, I'm going to ask whether she saw that. I remember how, early in my transition, she was almost aplogetic: "I'm really trying!" To which I replied, "I know."
I've told her that if I've been lucky about nothing else in my life, I've been "lucky in the mom department." Of course such declarations cannot fully convey the way I feel about the love she has always shown. But that interview with Cher reminded me, whether or not I needed it, of how good a mother I have. And, I suspect, Chaz Bono has a good mother, too.
Even the best of them--and us--slip up on pronouns. There are certainly worse things.