So, it would seem that most people would know that summer is the season for LGBTQA+ Pride, especially, the month of June. Fifty years ago, in June 28, 1969, a group of brave humans stood up the the police and the public, in Greenwich Village, NYC, to be treated fairly and equally. The establishment is Stonewall. And, the rest is history. Gay history.
I have been out as a lesbian, to friends, family, and the general public, for more than 35 years now. It has been a journey, that is for sure, one that has included self loathing, shame, and believing that there might be something wrong with me because I loved women. Yet, I persevered, I have been fiercely authentic as myself for many years now, and I love to model that for others also.
Long after my own coming out, my son had his own version of coming out that was in store for him. It was painful and confusing at times, for all of us. Yet, it shifted something in me on a deep level, that helped me to understand that we all just want to be loved for who we know ourselves to be. It is that simple, and yet as humans, we make it so complicated and difficult.
As I stood out in the oppressive heat today, holding my arms open and offering hugs for any and all that wanted, or needed them, I felt humbled. I felt emotional. I felt so sure that I was right where I needed to be. And, even though I didn’t hear a lot of stories, of rejection and heartache that others have experienced, I felt the connection from one human soul to the next, as we held one another and squeezed.
I have attended more Pride events this summer than in my entire adult life, and what I can say is, beyond how fulfilling it is to give a hug to a person that really needs one, and is willing to give it to themselves, it is a completely awe inspiring experience, to watch humans of all ages come to an event and feel free to be themselves. To express it, loudly or softly, and to know that they finally can just BE. Today, at the very end of the day, I had a young person cry in my arms, and me along with them, about how grateful that they were that Free Mom Hugs was there, offering hugs and hope to anyone who needed it.
And, my beautiful, loving son, came with his own sign, to show support, love, and connection with so many that took him up on his offer. It was so lovely to watch. I am in tears as I write this, so grateful that I have stepped upon this purposeful path; so overwhelmed with how it is needed and received; and so humbled by all of the souls that are now joining me on the journey. I came home with a rainbow necklace, and with my arms covered in glitter.
It was a very good day.