The people of society were once like God to me, and I was the woman Eve, the one of their creation. I was obedient to my God, and I did as they commanded. "Smile politely," they would say, and I did. "Say yes sir and no ma'am," they would say, and I did. "Respect your authority figures indefinitely," they would say, and even though no authority figure had ever respected me, I still did it. "Act like a lady," they would say, and that was hard for me to understand, but I tried my best to do that too. I did whatever they asked. As did my Adam. We were both young, innocent, and naive. We were at that age where we were too young to understand, but we were old enough to know better. The world was too complicated for our feeble, untarnished little minds, but our innocence was no excuse for doing something incorrectly. It was expected of us to know everything, but to know nothing. Heaven forbid we knew more about sinning then we did trigonometry.
Our Garden of Eden at the time was a silly amusement park because, in fact, nothing was more like paradise than 150 crowded acres of adrenaline inducing thrill rides in the middle of a hot, late spring day. We thought there was no one who could tell us what we were and were not allowed to do in our own paradise. We were free to act as kids would, if we wanted. We were free to act as adults would, if we wanted that too. We had no pressure because the garden was like our escape. We didn't exist under authority's rule there, and we thought we didn't exist under God's rule either. God was always a watchful creator in a suffocating, stifling way.
That day, Adam wanted nothing more than to show our unity. To gingerly take my hand. To glance my way with a soft smile. To pepper my face here and there with little affectionate kisses. To hold me tightly when I was afraid. Unknowing to us, God watched with disapproval.
Adam eventually got hungry after hours of bounding about our paradise, and so did I. We decided to stop at a rickety wooden booth where the concessions were sold. The shack looked ready to fall apart, as did most things in our paradise. The man behind the counter watched Adam with vacant eyes and a vacant smile. I just avoided his gaze by looking at the list of concessions on the little menu sign. I thought that cotton candy was like the clouds of heaven, but Adam returned with a plate full of funnel cake instead.
"Here, you should try this," Adam said. Gentle fingers tore off a bite of funnel cake and slipped it between my lips before I could even say I didn't like funnel cake. Gentle lips leaned in for a little taste of powdered sugar, and delicately brushed the corner my own lips. My face flushed, and my heart skipped, and it wasn't the heat, it was only me and the first taste of what I thought was the forbidden fruit. There was a moment I was left speechless, not quite in fear, just in surprise. Something I thought was forbidden became desirable. I wanted more funnel cake, or I wanted to be fed more funnel cake by wonderfully gentle fingers that intertwined with mine just moments later. I looked down at our hands. I looked to Adam. I still didn't know how to speak. It was like I forgot.
"Do you like it?" Adam asked with a rise of excitement. It was only funnel cake. It was a spongey, greasy piece of fried bread covered in an excessive amount of powdered sugar to hide any traces of thick, sickly tasting oil and whatever else needed to be hidden. And in that moment I had never loved funnel cake more. Nothing had ever tasted better. Funnel cake was my favorite food, and I could have ate nothing but that all day. I wanted to indulge. I wanted to be a glutton. I lived in that moment for as long as I could grasp it, washed with a rush of overflowing emotions and the taste of something like pure happiness lingering on my tongue. I told Adam it was perfect. Adam agreed. God was angry with us.
It took me a year after that sweltering late spring day to realize what rules I had broken and why what I did was wrong. Why people who passed by us gave us dirty looks. Why it almost felt wrong to do something that I loved. Why this looming godly figure disapproved of us so harshly. It wasn't the funnel cake that was my forbidden fruit; it never was. Adam was my forbidden fruit. God did not disapprove of singularly Adam though, God disapproved of us. Together. Unlike other happy couples in unity, Adam was forbidden from holding my hand. Adam was forbidden from glancing my way with a soft loving smile. Adam was forbidden from peppering my face with affectionate little kisses. Adam was forbidden from holding me tightly when I was afraid. Adam was forbidden from seeing me as something other than a friend. What we had could not be considered love because it was wrong. It wasn't wrong, but it was seen as wrong, bad, ugly, everything negative and every other insult which the people of society chewed up and spit in my face.
When I realized this, I was freed from my shackles. I was no longer immature, or naive, or innocent, and I was certainly not obedient. Those people were no God over me, and they had no power over me. I would not obey a God that saw me as lesser than any other person because of who I was. If breaking their rules was considered a sin, I was, and always would be, a sinner on all accounts. It took me a year to realize this. A year to see it. A year to see some hatred I had not seen before
A news article came out a year later. A tragedy happened a year later. June 12, 2016. 49 people killed and 53 injured in an Orlando nightclub. They were sinners like me. Like Adam. Dirty, filthy little sinners rebelling against a God we disapproved of. The memories of sweet powdered sugar on my lips became like a bitter after taste. To a God, to the people of society, we sinned. We weren't sinners to each other, we were just living our lives. They were just loving who they wished to love. I was just loving Adam.
And this God I had made in my head, this society I thought controlled me, they hated it. They hated our love because Adam's name was Gabby.