In my delusional space of randomness, I often wonder about freedom. Am I really that free? Yes, I am living on my own. Yes, I take my own decisions when it comes to my life. Yes, I have chosen my own field of work and yes, I have chosen my own sexuality. But is it really true, especially the last choice?
I mean, rewind your life to the day you were born and your nani made halwa and daddy distributed ladoos in his office and mummy took out the stock of hand-knitted booties and caps. It was the day when the doctor declared, ‘It’s a boy’ or ‘It’s a girl’. I mean the bias starts creeping in from that moment on.
Nobody gave time for that ‘it’ to become a girl or a boy, the doctor declares it and we abide by it like a rule book for the rest of our lives. And if the declaration isn’t enough, we have an ardent conditioning taking place over the years —whether it’s in the form of clothes you are made to wear, or the gifts you’re given, or the uniform that you wear or the queue that you select or the washroom you use or the sitting posture on a bike or the type of perfume you wear — just about everything is gender-based and gender-biased.
A lot of people realize their sexuality late in life and often, are confused as kids. Confused because other kids were clearly boy or girl-oriented. But what if there was freedom to choose your identity yourself? What if you could choose whether you want to put yourself out as a boy or a girl or whatever you are comfortable with in your birth certificates, ration cards, driving licenses, passports, Aadhar cards, voting IDs, educational admission forms or the character certificates issued to you by your education institutes yourself? What if there was absolutely no conditioning of a patriarchal or matriarchal society around you when you were born and you were just declared a homo-sapiens and then with time, with no judgmental eyes or scathing remarks or benefits for some gender, would you choose your own sexuality? What if such boundaries were so fluid that it would ultimately boil down to own your choice? Some may call it being experimental, some may call it being characterless, I say you are just trying to figure out and that in true sense, is freedom. Could this possibly be the end to sexism and maybe foeticide, infanticide and many other such conflicts that plague humanity?
Since I am working in Lucknow for project (Duration is around 2weeks), I want to take this analogy of the “Bada Imam Bara” that I just went visiting. It has the famous bhul bhulaiya in it. So every passage has four entrance points, you get confused which route to take and it takes a whole lot of time to figure your way around, but to exit, it takes less than 30 seconds, if you have figured out the route.
Similarly, when it comes to sexuality, it may take some time — perhaps, a few years for some or a life time for others — but once you are sure of where you stand, it’ll take only a few seconds to take the right decision. And that right decision would mean freedom in every sense of the word.
Sounds crazy? Yeah I know…since when did being random make sense! But the day it does, we might just feel more connected, more rooted, more happy, more human. Just maybe.