As part of the research for my newest theater piece, The Re-Education of George W. Bush, I get to meet with women of color to learn of their experiences in the world (you will understand why once you see the play!) This Monday (Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Day) I had the privilege of connecting with Regina D, who among many things is an African-American Lesbian mother and grandmother.
Two years ago I heard Regina D. speak at a Pride event at the Hartford Public Library. I sat transfixed attempting to type her every word of her revealing and powerful testimony. When I got home, I wrote a blog post about Regina and her message.
Tuesday I printed out the piece for Regina and included it with a consultant’s fee for the mind/heart-expanding narrative she shared. I thought I would re-post the blog entry here so that you may experience, in a small part, the gift of Regina D.
Her father sexually abused her relentlessly.
He referred to queer people as “those goddamn faggots!”
He cursed her for being lesbian.
He died in bitterness and alcoholism.
Regina never liked him.
But Regina’s mother sat her down this past November to set the story straight.
“Regina, when you told me you were a lesbian, you may have wondered how I took it all so well,” her mother began then dropped the bomb.
“Your father liked men.”
Seems all his homophobia was aimed right at himself as part of his own self-loathing.
He never hated Regina because she was lesbian; he hated himself.
In spite of the mess she was given, Regina speaks of hope and healing and love.
Regina: “If we are not real, it will kill us and we will take other people with us.”
Regina: “I want to expand the meaning of the phrase, My People.”
Regina wants to include more than just other African-American Lesbian Women in her group. She seeks to embrace among “her people” all queer folks, Puerto Ricans, Dominicans, Disabled, more and more, a wider coalition of humanity that she calls kin. “Everywhere I look, I need to see my people.”