Among other profound bits of wisdom dispersed on the Oprah Winfrey Show finale, she told her audience that "You will receive in direct proportion to what you give. You have the power to save some body's life. . . Everybody has a calling."
My calling is writing this blog.
As a result of producing the blog, it got me published in Gay Parent Magazine, which blesses me with a national audience, and an ability to positively impact even more lives. When I started this blog, I did so with the intention of helping other GLBT people realize that they could have a life full of possibility, and if parenthood was one of their aspirations, being GLBT should not become a reason for not pursing it. As I grew up in rural Maine in the 1970s and -80s, having children was not even part of my vision for my future. I knew I was a lesbian, and I didn't think that having children would be possible. Then, I met a wonderful woman who changed that vision.
Although Donna came out later in life, she always believed that she would have children one day. That belief never wavered, even after coming out in her early thirties. Ironically enough, I would meet Donna when I was in my late twenties and fell in love with her a couple of years into our friendship. I distinctly remember turning 29 just before our commitment ceremony in May of 2000. I turned thirty the following year, and we were already expecting Hunter.
I'm only directly aware of the feedback my small circle of friends who read my blog share with me and they tell me I should keep going. I also know that people around the world are reading it regularly and I'm touched by that audience. One of the things I'm most proud of is influencing a friend's son to work on a project in his middle school about legalizing Gay Marriage. His project is something of a "full-circle moment." I had my most challenging years in middle school, and the climate around that topic, at least in my part of the world nearly 30 years ago was not conducive to mature conversation about GLBT issues. If anything, it was the topic of crass jokes. Now, we're in a place where it becomes the topic of a middle-school social studies project.
I'm proud that my family inspired this group of students to share how we live our lives as an example of why Gay Marriage should be legalized. They even used the cover of Gay Parent Magazine (the one on which my family was featured) as part of the visual aid. The project was submitted to the Project Citizen NJ contest hosted by Rutgers University for NJ students statewide. I'm proud to say it placed second.
For me, that accomplishment is a barometer for how far we have come and how much more progressive and open-minded our future leaders are about this topic. They realize that we are simply another family living our lives as thoughtfully and lovingly as any other "traditional" family does. Perhaps that understanding will finally propel equal rights legislation for GLBT people. I am confident it will pass in my lifetime.
We are blowing open closet doors everywhere and demystifying the scandalous, taboo perception so many people have held for so long about GLBT people. The Graffam family is living our life here in our suburb of New Jersey and letting it speak for us. It warms my heart to know many people are proud of what we're telling the world.
- Stacy Graffam
- I'm a lesbian mom in an inter-racial relationship, living in Bergen County, NJ. My wife and I are raising two beautiful children, an eleven year-old son and a six year-old daughter. I'll be sharing our adventures in faith and parenting on a regular basis. My entries are also published in Gay Parent Magazine (www.gayparentmag.com).