Why do I live in Albania? Because it was the best place for her. Short commute equals more Mommy time. Country without Malaria means no meds. Place that is super child friendly equates to less boundaries, visits to fancy restaurants, and abundant kisses and candies from strangers.
Why do we no longer have a house full of sweets? Because I am trying to model healthy eating habits despite what my sweat tooth says.
Where do we spend summer vacation? With family. Yes, there are tons of places that I would love to visit. Montenegro is so close and, yet, I travel home to snow and cold so that she can build a relationship with her grandparents and cousins.
How do I spend my freetime? Sometimes on me, because that makes me a better Mom. But, more often than not, I end up looking up fun activities or recipes she can help with. I research school choices and safe play toys. I plan and replan birthday parties and rainy afternoon activities.
What was the last book I read? Brown bear, Brown bear. It was the millionth time this week— but it makes her smile and giggle so strong her entire body shakes. I would read it a million times more just to continue to illicit that joy.
Why do I come out? Because I want to build a world where it doesn’t matter what people’s sexuality or gender identities are, because we value them for who they are, what they believe, and how they act. I react based on how they make us feel. Because I want a safe place for my daughter to grow and explore. So that I can model good behavior and no pass down any residual internalized homophobia that I may harbor. I come out regularly because I want her to know that you don’t have to be invisible.
She is nearly three and I don’t know who she will become…. but I do want her to know that whoever that person is, her Mommy will love her. Always.
*** *** *** Today is Blogging for LGBT Families Day, an annual event sponsored by Mombian. Check out all the entries from this year! Here are my entries from other years:
- Suddenly the World Seems Like Such a Perfect Place (2013): “Love isn’t what Hollywood sells us. It isn’t just grand gestures. And song. (Well, maybe sometimes it is, if you are lucky). It also isn’t always tragic or fated. Love, the kind of love that grows families, is in the small things. It is the everyday things. It is getting up in the morning to make coffee because your partner has to. It is letting go of a bit of yourself to be there for the other. It is reminding the other who they are and supporting them in that. It is having the same interests. Laughing at little inside jokes even when they are no longer funny. Sharing values and night time diaper changes. It is feeling comfortable and safe. It is being safe.”
- Families by Choice (2011): “I sit writing this, waiting for the arrival of my daughter. As a bisexual woman married to a man, I worry about educating my child. I worry how to create a home environment that is safe, a place where she can grow up without shame, knowing who she is and who her family is. I worry about the best ways to help her grow in a bilingual, biracial household– especially when that is located in a third culture. I ponder how my messages can be stronger than societies. I worry about everyday stuff and big picture stuff.”
- Because of a Little Piece of Paper (2010): ”So often I feel this unearned privilege of having married a man thrown in my face. What if S had been a woman? My life partner very easily could have been a woman. And what protections would she have been given? The unfairness of it all burns. And, you think I exaggerate, but writing this, my eyes are welling with tears.”
- Blogging for LGBT Families (2007): “Karen Atala, a Chilean judge with three children, had her children taken away from her by the courts in 2004 when she moved in with her partner. The courts granted custody to the father, he ex-husband. Ms. Atala, being a lawyer and judge herself, appealed all the way to the Supreme Court of Chile which ruled on the basis that, “[the children] would suffer psychological harm living with Ms. Atala and her partner…[and that] they would become confused about gender roles and suffer from discrimination and isolation.” The court then nullified all her rights as a mother and gave permanent and total custody to the girl’s father forever. She is still fighting, now on an international front, to have her children returned to her.”
Don’t forget to check out other posts for 2014 Blogging for LGBTQ Families Day.