Sunday, June 7, 2015

Homemade Rainbow Confetti, Slacks on Sunday and What I Know

On January 26th, two days after her 12th birthday, with a confusing and, quite frankly unclear (to some), card trick and a shower of homemade rainbow confetti our youngest daughter, Jillian, told us she was gay.

I would like to say that it didn't catch me off guard but that would be a lie.  As I asked Jillian a short time later that night what exactly the card trick meant, she looked at me and simply said "I'm gay".  Tears welled up in my eyes and I pulled her into a hug and told her that I loved her.  It was a natural response.  I didn't even have to think twice about it. 

I want to be clear here, didn't cry because I was sad or upset that she is gay.  I cried because I knew that this was going to be hard.  And I told her that.  I said "This is hard. This is going to be hard. 

 And she said "I know."

Our families have been incredibly loving and supportive and have thrown their arms around our family and especially Jillian. We have also found wonderful love and support through groups like "I'll Walk With You" and "North Star".

I am so thankful that Jillian felt safe enough in our family to shower us with her homemade rainbow confetti.  Unfortunately there are many people out there that don't feel safe sharing who they are with those that are supposed to love them the very most.  Since Jillian has come out to us we have had another dear person come to us and share their proverbial "rainbow confetti".  I feel incredibly blessed and honored that they did so.

One of the ways that I chose to show support for Jillian was to wear  pants to church the first Sunday that we attended our new ward.  She doesn't like dresses and prefers wearing a suit instead.  When I asked her if she would like me to wear pants to church with her she was all over that.  My husband wrote a wonderful blog about our first week that you can read  HERE.

That Sunday as I prepared to walk into the chapel in pants I was surprised by just how nervous I was.  And the thought came to me "If you think it's hard walking into church because you are wearing pants how much more difficult has it been for Jillian for so many years?"   How difficult must it be for anyone who feels like they don't fit "the mold".

I was only planning on wearing the pants that first Sunday but after that realization I decided that I would continue wearing pants.  Not necessarily every Sunday but it will be a regular thing.  In fact I wore slacks again today.

I would like to start a "movement" if you will to let people out there who may feel different or who are clutching a fistful of  their own rainbow confetti afraid that someone might see it, that there are people in the church that love you and want you there. If you care to join me I will be wearing slacks every second Sunday.  You can join me in this "Slacks on Sunday" if you feel like it. You can take pictures or write about your experience and post to social media with the hashtag #SlacksonSunday.

If you see me on a Sunday wearing pants (or a skirt) know that I love you for who you are no matter what, and if you need a hug or someone to talk to, I am here for you.

And if someone feels safe enough to let you catch a glimpse of their homemade rainbow confetti please know that your life will be richer, fuller and hopefully you will come to a deeper understanding of the second great commandment.

And, believe it or not, if you are showered with rainbow confetti your life will be blessed.
It most likely will be hard but you will be blessed.
This I know.


Mary said...

I LOVE this message and demonstration of love for your beautiful daughter and those that don't "fit the mold," since I never have either. I will join you friend and hope to show others to come as they are, and feel loved. 😘😘

Erin said...

Beautiful. I have worn slacks to church quite a few times, and people would tell me how nice I looked. One thing I have learned over the last few years is that when I am brave enough to stand out and break the mold, lovely people find me, and I make real connections that fill my soul.

You are lucky to have Jillian in your life. xo

Anonymous said...

Love LOVE Love, this and you and Jillian and all that you do and are.

Jo said...

I love this so much. You guys are incredible parents.