Family Meeting

It’s tonight.  After my rant (mostly that ugly cry that happens where I can’t speak and the pitch of my voice sounds are bird like) my mom decided to schedule some time where we get it out.  She & my brother are coming over here – because she was worried about us being in public.

It sounds worse than it is.  I think I’ll cry.  Well, I’m sure I’ll cry.  I assume my brother won’t have many words but if I can see his face, I’ll know what he’s feeling.  My mom actually has an “agenda” so I guess there won’t be time for awkward silence.

Wish me luck.  Wish me strength.

And I also wanted to thank you. – for all your thoughts, emails & even phone calls.  I’ve never experienced anything like this and I don’t know anyone else who has either.  Your advice means a lot to me and reminds me to keep an open mind and be thoughtful about the feelings of those I love so much.

2 or 1 – update

So, funny story…

I wrote yesterday’s post last Friday – timing it to go out yesterday morning.  I wanted to get some good advice before I made a decision and I knew I’d get plenty.

Well, Saturday night, my family went out to celebrate my 16 yo nephew becoming an Eagle Scout.  (I could go on & on about how proud I am to call him mine)  But as we were finishing up dinner, I mentioned to everyone to “save the date for Glory’s party”.  I figured I’d get the date out there then have private conversations with them about it being the only party.  But sadly, it didn’t go like that.  My mom looked at me and asked who would be there and the world stopped turning.

The story goes from bad to worse and I’ll just sum it up by saying that both my mom & brother said they’d “never” come to a joint party.  We all said things we regret and stormed out of the restaurant without saying goodbye.

My heart was broken.

And it’s not because they didn’t want a joint party.  I knew they wouldn’t.  I guess I hoped that they would say they weren’t quite ready this year or just ask me to reconsider.  But “never” hit me hard and I just felt the whole world come down.  All my defenses went up because it’s Glory’s birthday – who loves them all so very much.  And I just felt (from them and me) that maybe everyone blames me a little bit – whether it’s spoken or not.  And it just hurts.

As soon as we left, I collapsed in tears.  The ugly kind.  I cried all the way home and then went on a drive just so I could scream a while – without Glory witnessing.  I got a text from my brother that night – telling me he loves me.  And reminding me that it’s up to us to put the pieces back together because no one is going to do it for us anyone.  They’re not strong enough.  My mom sent a text yesterday – saying that the pain is about a lot more than Glory’s birthday and she’s right.  Mostly, I need something to shift.  And to be honest, the little girl in me needs her to make something right.

My brother has also lost his dad.  But he didn’t get a new one.  He stood up to his dad and said, “you can’t abandon your children.  if Keri’s not your daughter, then I’m not your son.”  And they haven’t spoken since.  …over a year ago.

My mom and I spoke today.  She waited too long to give him a choice but once she did, he didn’t choose us.  They’re getting divorced.  It’s not what I want.  Just like having a joint party.  It’s so much more than that.

So while my post went out yesterday morning, the conversation had already taken place.  I hope it’s the start of … something.

2 or 1?

My baby girl is about to turn 3.  I know, I’m just as shocked as you are.  We’ll be heading to San Diego again in July so that’s where the majority if her celebration will take place.  However, before we go, I’d like to celebrate with family.

Last year, around the time, the news of my “new family” was pretty new – atleast to my dad. (RJ)  My mom was still panicked about the whole thing and my brother was beside himself – just trying to keep it together.  It made perfect sense that we hold 2 seperate parties for Glory.  One for my mom’s side & one for my dad’s.

This year, I’m unsure.

I’m blogging because I’m sure I have readers who come from split families.  50% of marriages end in divorce so surely some of you have had to deal with this kind of situation.  What do you do?  Do you seriously have 2 parties every year so your parents don’t have to see each other?  Or do they play nice and comfy and make it work for the kids?

I’m not trying to be difficult and certainly don’t want to push anyone toward a place that feels uncomfortable.  Honestly, 2 parties are hard to plan and because we’re leaving town so soon after, the timing is extra hard.

I’m considering planning one party, inviting everyone, and see who shows up.   But I worry a whole portion of my family won’t.

Thoughts?

Before & After

I haven’t bothered you with garden photos for a bit – that’s because I thought I should let it grow for a bit and also because I’ve had some squirrel drama that I’m still too upset to get in to.  <wink>

But now, for your viewing pleasure, I give you my masterpiece.

Before we began…

Adding the 2 big beds…

Growing things on the inside…

…to plant on the outside.

A set back…

Added a future herb garden…

And a tomato garden

Then I saw a pallet next door…

That I turned in to this! (but had to wait a week before standing it upright.)

I added some bamboo sheeting to cover the chain link (& the gross view in to the neighbors yard)

And now it looks like this….

From one end to the other!

Close up of the standing pallet. 4X4

Fan-freakin-tastic!!

Gays/Mormons

If you’re gay and you live in Utah, you most definitely know a lot about the Mormon religion.  If you’re from here, in any way, you most likely have relatives that practice and maybe even a long line of devout members.  They’re everywhere!  Politically, it hasn’t been a good experience for me but otherwise, I love where I live and who surrounds me.

They consider themselves Christian – so we have that in common.  They speak (mostly) from a place of love & compassion.  They focus their lives on their families and they do wonderful things for people in need… well, some people.

I may be jaded from working so closely with the LGBT community here but I’ve also seen the flipside of what they do to many gay & trans members.  It’s always been a “hate the sin, love the sinner” type of thing but it’s just not that easy for people who try to follow.  They have a check list of things to do to get in to heaven and a lot of the “must haves” just don’t work for me.  Even if I didn’t drink caffeine or vodka tonics, I also couldn’t have sex before marriage – which really sucks because (in this State) we’ll be lucky to see that in the next 20 years.  That means I’d be a virgin until I was my parents age!  Blech!  And c’mon, any time you “love me in spite of who I am”… I’m just not gonna feel warm & fuzzy about that.

We have a really high suicide rate here.  No one likes to talk about it but it’s true.  & it’s not just teens, although mostly.  It’s also grown men who can’t find a way out of a this religion without feeling like they’ve lost everything.  – their status as a priesthood holding man, their children who now think they’re a sinner, their friends & family for the same reason and also knowing their giving up their salvation to live a “chosen, selfish life”.  I’ve heard all of these things – some in suicide notes that families eventually share.  And it’s just not okay.

A while ago, Cristy and I met monthly with Mormon leaders and some members of our community.  We met in our house many times to just talk and get to know each other.  These particular people wanted to take steps forward – toward each other – and I think it worked.  There were also super fancy people have “closed door” meetings – trying to find ways to compromise.  And just yesterday, a lovely group thrown together by a lovely lady, gathered together in their church clothes & marched at Pride Day.  They didn’t talk about loving the sinner and hating the sin.  They said nothing of loving you in spite of you.  They simply said that “No doctrine is more important than God’s children.”  Amen.  You simply can’t speak more Christian than that.

So maybe this is something.  Maybe this is a new movement within the movement.  Keep it up, friends!  You fill me up!

The group that headed off the parade – 120 entries, 15,000 onlookers!