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Gordon's D-Zone Arcive (2006-2014)

Saturday, February 17, 2007

PONDERING
SAINT VALENTINE

I was unsure of posting on Saint Valentine’s Day – the day often associated with lovers and romanticism. As I grew up, I did wonder what will happen when I started work or even after I finished from school. And tied to some fantasies I had as a teenager was hope that one day I would find a companion to join me in life's path.


CAPTION: Cupid sculpture ravaged by the elements (courtesy of http://www.sxc.hu/index.phtml)


LESSON 1: PITY IS NOT SYNONYMOUS WITH LOVE

I recall how once I was left alone during a local disco only to be ‘rescued’ by a friend’s sister who accepted to dance with me mainly because she probably pitied me. So, despite any talk of the power of love and the ideals of true love, the facts taught me that how I was perceived by others had much to do with the kind of relationships people like me should aspire to. And believe me, any relationship based on pity is headed for disaster!!

I made friends and have consequently passed through the awkward first crushes as well as being infatuated at times (better stop there). But I would rather be with people who respected me and treated me as an equal rather than look down at me as if I was some sort of misfortunate person. But back to the lessons I have learned …

LESSON 2: ROMANCE IS NOT FOR DISABLED PEOPLE

Moreover, There are as usual extreme perceptions surrounding disabled people, from one saying we are ‘asexual’ or virtually sexless, to the other which is equally damaging labelling us as ‘hypersexual’ or with extreme sexual appetites. True, we cannot equate sex with love but such images and preconceptions only help disable us in the pursuit of any meaningful relationship.

Besides this, I can recount how difficult it is for me as a wheelchair user to navigate the built environment. And there are also difficulties in finding transportation and services that are accessible. Not romantic stuff to think about really, but these are extra things on my checklist to consider if I were to write – say a romantic novel …

LESSON 3: IGNORE LESSON 2

Having an impairment should not, in an ideal world, be a statement bout my moral conduct, my preferences, or even my circle of friends and interests. It should be an interesting attribute that sets me aside from the rest of other men. I could say that I don’t walk but can wheel around. Or that being pushed around is a pleasure … that sounded kind of awful really… anyway you get the point…

A (BELATED) VALENTINE POEM

I do dabble in poetry, often romantic (depressing?) verse that echoes some of my preoccupations and even hopes… here’s a short excerpt from a recent poem I wrote on St Valentine itself:

{…}
I know she dreams and wants to know,
The meaning carved deep within her soul.
And yet I wonder why I write this now.

I might be seeking what cannot be done,
To capture what I can never truly know.
As if I could ever stop the river of my destiny,
Or put on hold the motions of the cosmos.
{…}



For more on St. Valentine’s day visit:
http://www.history.com/minisites/valentine/

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