Yesterday was Pride in our city. Yes, we are a few months behind the Pride celebrations that happen each year in June, but our state has always been ahead of the rest of the country in terms of acceptance and LGBTQ rights. So, yesterday was not a “better late than never” situation, but a “September seems like a great time to celebrate what we kind of celebrate every day” situation.
I had the honor to organize and lead LGBTQ families, their kids, and our allies in the parade. I had the pleasure to set up a Family Tent to allow queer families and kids to make crafts, play, and connect.
The weather was beautiful, and the park was packed with vendors and people and love. I saw a police officer dance with a woman wearing a rainbow flag as a cape. I saw transgender teens traveling in packs, laughing and singing and doing what teenagers do. I saw same-gender couples kissing and holding hands. And I saw a lot of families.
Some were queer, some had queer kids, and some did not identify with any letter in our LGBTQ rainbow. One man who came into the tent with his three kids was almost embarrassed to admit he was straight. He explained that he wanted to show his kids what Pride was all about. I explained that I would never shame him for his sexuality.
If a day could be described as perfect, yesterday would have been that day. My three kids basked in a day filled with rainbows and their friends and candy they would steal from bowls found in tents. My partner and I were filled with gratitude and love for our ally friends who marched with us and for the allies cheering for us as we marched along the parade route.
We were filled with respect and appreciation for the other queer families who understand what it’s like to feel repressed and hated and unworthy.
But yesterday we were united. We were proud. And we were thankful.
We were thankful for our courage that bubbles to the surface when it’s most needed. We were thankful to be recognized as equal. We were thankful to live in a community that supports us. We were thankful for each other. And we were thankful for our kids. Not just ours, but the kids of our allies too, who wave flags and march and shout for love and kindness.
I still feel thankful today.
This post was originally published on Family Rhetoric by Amber Leventry on September 11, 2017.