Monday, May 5, 2014

Dear Jon

Well technically it's the day after, the 8th anniversary of your death, but since I haven't slept yet...I'm not going to count this as late.  You being the totally cool person you are, will most likely totally let me get away with that excuse too. 

You'd be 32 this year.  Taunting me, no doubt, about my upcoming 30th birthday-but you know what.  I don't mind turning 30.  I'm ready to be done with the 20s, and from what I hear...30s are pretty fantastic. 

I have four kids-this, of course you know.  I am fully convinced that you're watching over the baby we lost a few years ago.  And that you watch over those of us here, every day. 

Today, I was thinking about that fireside we drove to.  You know, the one where I got insanely lost and we showed up late and yet still got AMAZING frontish row seats to hear Richard G Scott speak...and how people kept asking if we were engaged, even though we'd never been on a single date, and that was awkward, so we kept our distance the rest of the night. And then on the drive home, my brother fell asleep in the backseat, and we just talked.  And for 2.5 hours you were a different you.  Instead of the happy go lucky hilarious joker I'd known, you were serious and calm and bore your testimony to me.  For the entire drive, you spoke with passion for your love of the gospel.  You were on fire man.  I just wasn't' sure if I ever told you how much that drive meant to me.  How much it helped me to grow.  How much I lean on it still to this day.  How much I loved you. 

I don't think I ever really told you that.   I was always afraid it would come out meaning something more than it did.  Or wrong.  Or maybe I didn't think I needed to say it, because of course I loved you.  Of course you were an incredible friend who I leaned on everyday.  You knew I had Chris.  I knew you were head over heels for a girl named Kathy.  And yet, I never told you.  So I'm telling and every day since the moment I got that awful phone call, telling me that you were gone.  I love you kid!  I love that you were a total prankster.  I love that you wanted to live life on your terms.  That you loathed your singles ward in Mechanicsburg, because oh man, it was awful.  I love what an amazing uncle you were with your nieces and nephews.  They adored you!  You had a gift with them.  I love that you were friends with my brother.  That we all three hung out and made weird videos on my crappy camera and   that.....even tough it's been 8 years....and it'll be many more....i love that I know that I will get to see you again.  I really hope that when I pass you'll be there to show me the ropes, and make sure that I get to where I'm going. 

Saturday, March 1, 2014

From a less extreme LDS mom

These days homosexuality is a buzz.  Everyone is freaking out about same sex marriage and adoption for same sex couples...and finding super secret messages inside of pixar movies.  Here's the deal.  I read an article over a week ago where an LDS mom went on and on about the horrifying gay undertones of the hit song, LET IT GO.  It bothered me. and it has CONTINUED to bother me . So I'm taking the time now to write it out so that hopefully it can stop bothering me.

SO WHAT?!!  Let's just pretend for a moment that Elsa IS a super secret Lesbian character.  I mean, she seems to be pretty anti every fella Anna falls for ;)   Aside from her suspected sexual attraction, what else could we glean from her character?  She strives to be a good daughter.  She spent her life in hiding from everyone, including her best friend, her sister, just so that she could please her parents.  She spent 18 years (or however long "Coming of age" is for a queen) alone, and terrified of who she is.  I'm sure there are PLENTY of girls (and boys for that matter) with same sex attraction who relate to this isolation.  Then, she has this break through where she learns to LET IT GO. acceptance. accepting who she is. accepting what she feels.  Notice how when she fights or hides these feelings the ice she creates is jagged and harsh and harms people.  When she has this brief moment of acceptance, everything she creates is BEAUTY.  She loves herself, for the first time since before she learned these feelings were a PROBLEM, she is creating beautiful, perfection with this gift.  Her father tells the King troll she was "Born" with the gift, when she's fighting Anna in the ice castle, she sings that she is CURSED.  Again, I'm sure this resonates with many tween and teen and even adults.  In the end, Elsa accepts that the way to constantly create beauty in her life and the lives of those around her, is to love herself.  LOVE.  Would it be SO bad for the kids, tweens, teens and adults to have a role model or ten that they could look to and have relate to them?  Would it be so awful if they had something that showed them how to have a healthy relationship with the people in your life while dealing with the stigma of same sex attraction.  I hear you moms, "I don't want the media telling MY kids about same sex attraction at 5" sure. I hear you. It's YOUR job to talk to your kids about it.  We are in an age where we need to tell our kids people love in all kinds of ways.  Families come in all forms.  Every family is different, but every family is VALID. Respect everyone.  Enough with the homophobia.  Enough with the hate.  Bring on the RESPECT.  You don't have to "condone." "appove" or even like the idea of same sex parents/marraige, but theses people are PEOPLE and deserve our respect and charity, just like anyone in the heterosexual community. 

I'm not great with's 1am.  But here's what I really know.  Should one or more of my amazing 4 kids wake up one day, and realize they have same sex attraction, I want them to know that THAT'S OK.  It's ok, because I have loved them since the day they were born....before that even...and love them forever.  I hope they never feel that they need to hide things about themselves from me or the world. I mean clearly teens and tweens hide. heck even Ava wants alone time now and then. Everyone wants privacy, but I don't want them to feel that shame and embarrassment about identity.  I want them to know...CHILD OF GOD. yesterday, today, tomorrow...FOREVER.