This Pride month, I found myself feeling the need to express some deep rooted personal feelings. I know that my words cannot express adequately what is in my heart. I know that I live a very privileged life. I am beyond comfortable in my world. I know that I have had struggles and trials of my own which have been very hard to face and I will never discount the lessons that I have learned through them. But as I watch and see my brothers and sisters of color and in the LGBTQ+ community I am humbled. I cannot relate to what they face daily.

I know that I am not afraid to walk down the street because of the color of my skin or the orientation with which I identify. I don’t fear for my life in what I see as normal everyday interactions. I am not followed around in grocery stores being watched for what is assumed I am doing because of my skin color, I don’t have people yelling obscenities or calling me names, I don’t have to endure jokes aimed at me, I do not fear for my life daily, and so much more.

The past few months of this COVID pandemic, I did not fear for income or how to pay the bills. I played with my grandchildren, had endless amazing conversations with my family and friends, long walks, home made treats, Netflix, enjoyed a beautiful backyard, made quilts, laughed…and enjoyed the time to rest. I learned that I can choose to get rid of the outside noise, the to do lists and embrace the quiet simpler life.

I do not believe this was a coincidence. I believe that God has allowed this time for us to stop and clear the noise and prepare to listen and hear! And force change! I am ready to stop and listen to not only my brothers and sisters of color but also my brothers and sisters in the gay community.

June is the birthday month of my gay son, Caleb. It falls the same time as Pride week every year. I am so beyond grateful for this human in my life. He has taught me so much.

As I navigate this new world of the LGBT community and “black lives matter” I know that I can’t possibly understand what life is like. He has given me multiple passes when I just don’t get things right or I completely screw up. I continue to try and learn how to support him and I know that there is more I can do. I will listen and learn what that means. But for now I can and I choose to celebrate!

I celebrate him today because of the daily battles he fights. I celebrate him because he has chosen to live and to fight! I celebrate him because he has such a tender kind heart. I celebrate him because he has hopes and dreams and he continues to work towards them. I celebrate him because he loves without conditions. I celebrate him because he can be himself and he makes me laugh. I celebrate him because he loves his family and friends deeply and completely. I celebrate that he knows how, and is willing to work hard. I celebrate that he is talented in so many ways! I celebrate his willingness to serve others. I celebrate that he calls me Mom!

I celebrate HIM! He is everything to me and perfect in every way. I LOVE HIM!

Happy Birthday, Caleb! And Happy Pride month!

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This In My Own Words story is dedicated to helping people learn to better share love, while fostering an atmosphere of understanding.  When we know better, we do better.  

 

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