Listen to the audio recording of this message.
Dearest Adopted Holiday Child,
I come to you with a heart willing and able to give more love. Love, that in the past was given to me, is now my honor and privilege to pass on to you. Holiday times are hard for many LGBTQ youth and adults. It’s a time devoted to fond family memories and interactions. However, some of us don’t have the ability to spend that time with our families. Sometimes it’s because they’ve rejected us, and other times, like me, my parents are no longer with us.
It is at times like this that I look back onto my troubled childhood and remember fondly the cherished times. My upbringing wasn’t the best. I had a mother who couldn’t care for her children properly due to substance abuse, but at the holidays she tried her best. Unfortunately, her best wasn’t enough and I was put into the care of others along with most of my siblings. From the age of 10 on I wasn’t able to share in the holiday cheer with my family like everyone else. Don’t get me wrong, I was blessed with the family I had and the holiday trappings, but there was always something missing… My family. As I grew up, and got to be with my new family more, the holidays turned into something magical I had never felt. These people took me into their home and gave me unconditional love. And that love has grown and expanded as the years have gone on.
I am now in my mid-thirties, and twelve years ago I lost my “mom”. She had fought cancer for many years before her passing, but she didn’t let that stop her from living life. The holidays were important to her. They were a time for family and sharing of our love. She still made Thanksgiving and Christmas dinner, although it took her longer in her condition. And she always had extra just in case someone came calling to our house. In her darkest hour, the holidays shed a beacon of light and love. That beacon of hope touched everyone around her. And since that day, I have lived my life in her memory, sharing the hope of life and love with as many people as I can. The holidays are about family, whether blood or chosen. And to be blessed as I have been to be her child, I can’t help but to open my heart to you. I hope that you can find comfort in my heart as I found in hers so many years ago. When the world was its darkest, her love was my beacon of hope. She accepted me as her gay son then, and I know now would be just as accepting of me as her Trans* daughter. Come be part of my family and let me help shine that beacon of hope and love on you, and let my mother’s love be passed from me to you, so that one day you can open up your heart and share that love with another.
Blessings and joy to you at this Holiday season. Welcome to my family and to my heart. May you find comfort, peace, and unconditional love there!