My Dear Holiday Child,
Today I am offering to be your Holiday Mom. I am not actually a mother, but last year I watched my niece come out to her parents. I saw first hand her anguish and her fears of ex-communication. I offered her my home as a sanctuary, just as I am offering a virtual sanctuary to you today, asking you to imagine my house is yours. Sometimes we need a person (or two or three!) on the sidelines really rooting for us on our journey. I know how to be a your Holiday Mom–someone who can celebrate you while also providing a shoulder to rest on.
For some of you, this time of year might bring sadness because of your family’s inability to accept your sexual orientation, and/or you have to be without your true love as you gather with your family or community. Or, your employer may not allow you to bring, or you may not feel comfortable bringing, your partner to your holiday party at work, so you have to go alone. I know firsthand about this split, for different reasons than yours, because I went through it myself. This split is unnatural. It made me feel sad and alone, not festive and merry!
This season, if you’d like, you can imagine you are coming to my house. When you arrive, I will greet you at my door with a big hug that tells you I have been waiting for you, and how much we were looking forward to your company. You can expect an eclectic meal…my husband is always interesting in cooking at least one extravagant dish every year for Christmas. One year, it was duck. Another year, it was figgy pudding. I have no idea what he is going to concoct this year. I am really hoping he just sticks with Christmas cookies so I can make some Cornish hens! You can also expect a fresh tree that smells up the house with pine. There is soy eggnog with cinnamon and nutmeg. There is a present for you. If you like, we can play games and exchange stories. We would like to know you, as you are. You can expect our cats, Biscuit and Chandra, wanting some of your attention too!
What I want you to know is this: I embrace you. I see you stand so bravely on the very spot you are on. And I encourage you, to trust yourself, to trust your journey. You are growing into a fine young person, with so much to look forward to. I am fiercely proud of you and who you are becoming. I know your heart, and you can know in this house that you are encouraged. I want to see you smile. In the midst of it, there is one thing that can make it easier: try to find compassion as much as you can for yourself and for others. We are all really just struggling here. I want to tell you–there is always some beautiful gold on this path, so don’t miss it! Look out for it, on this lovely ground made of your own existence and choice. Trust yourself.
Here, we just want you to relax and be yourself. So put your feet up, play with the cats, and feel at home.
Happy Holidays, Happy New Year, from our house to yours!