As I sat trying to decide what to write about today a good friend acted as a muse and gave me some inspiration. We were discussing her children. She said something along the lines of wanting to know that they would be comfortable if they turned out to be trans like me some day, or for that matter if they were different in any way. That got my wheels turning a bit.
I recently read an article featuring a letter from a mom to her unborn child. The letter was inspired by transgender teen Leelah Alcorn's death. In the letter the mom expresses to a child she has never met that she would love that child and accept them regardless of their gender identity.
That's what we are all called to do isn't it? We are to love and accept our children no matter who they turn out to be. And we don't get to pick our children so we have to be ready to love them.
But that's the cool thing. My dad did get to choose me. Now don't get me wrong, he had no idea I would be this colorful when I was 5. You see, my mom remarried when I was a child and my dad accepted this little kid into his life. Later I would ask to take his last name and my dad adopted me. Friends, let me tell you, those acts of acceptance by my father have set the tone for my life. My dad accepted me as I came and chose to be my dad. That selfless love has been my shining example.
About a month ago I dropped an atom bomb on my dad. I sent the email that would be my coming out. My dad is a man of few words and I gave him the time and space to process his feelings. Today I received a text from him. Forgive me because I didn't ask if I can share this but I was so moved. It simply said "I've experienced a wide range of emotions, a few times, but I want you to know that in the end, I've come to grips with this, and I applaud your courage...Love Dad" For the second time in our lives my dad chose to accept me. I could not ask for a better role model for acceptance and love.
To my dad, I love you. There are no words to express the depth of my feelings. becoming a woman has had and will have its ups and it's downs. Becoming your daughter is among the most wonderful things that has ever happened to me.
To my children. Grampa has been an example to us. I will love you both regardless of who you grow up to be. In our family we walk to our own beat. Never lose that. Challenge yourselves and others and know that regardless of if you call me dad, mom, or Trish I will be here and I will have your back.
To my friends, allies, and to my muse Liz; take a note from my dad. We get our children having no idea who they are going to grow up to be. We impart everything we can. I got my dad's love of wood but not his knack for saving money (sorry dad). There are however, some things that we simply cannot affect. Give them license to be who they are going to be. Shatter the boundaries; be they gender boundaries, or the conventional wisdom of the day. The greatest gift we can give our children is love, and the knowledge that our love can never be taken away. I am blessed to have two parents who give me that love and I will make sure that I share that blessing with my own children. Be your children's inspiration.
Thank you to my dad Ken for your love and acceptance.
"Nothing is too girly and nothing is too masculine. But I do love color, and maybe that's a little girly - especially pink." Stacy London