One Mom

Raising My Rainbow

One mom.

Sometimes one mom is all it takes.

Sometimes one mom doesn’t seem like nearly enough.

Sometimes both feel true. (It’s weird when that happens because you feel thankful and disappointed at the same time and that combination of feelings isn’t comfortable.)

C.J.’s fifth grade school year was a dumpster fire. A hot, inextinguishable, shit-smelling dumpster fire. It burned rancid and infuriating for months, until the final bell rang and the school’s PA system blasted “School’s Out.” I dreamt of boldly giving the middle finger to all of the students, parents, buildings and blacktop while tears streamed down my face.

When things get hard, when they are complicated, I get quiet. I curl inward. That doesn’t mean my brain, soul and heart shut off. It means they are working overtime.

I curled inward in February and I haven’t quite returned to my normal self. I’m not sure I ever…

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Getting Better

Anna Shinoda

I haven’t talked publicly that much about my own mental health. I think in interviews when Learning Not to Drown came out, I may have touched briefly on being in therapy, but I’ve never gone into detail. I am very open with friends about it, but was always afraid of being judged publicly for having my brain. I applauded Chester (especially in the past few months before his death) for being so open in interviews. I was proud of him for being brave. I knew that by describing the way his brain worked, Chester would help others get beyond the stigma of mental health and addiction.

I guess now it’s my turn to be open.

As someone who personally deals with depression and anxiety on a daily basis, I know how important it is to recognize the way my brain works and the things that help me. Personally, therapy has…

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Jewish Geography & Smallpox

Love the “Its not smallpox, people…”
Will have to remember this when people ask us About our daughter.
Love your blog! Wish my daughter had transitioned at 10 instead of 18. Would have missed a lot of sad years.

George. Jessie. Love.

Recently, my dear friend Francine* was at a social gathering for her kids.  It was held in a facility several communities away from where either she or I have ever lived. She thought it was going to be a drop off, affording her the opportunity to explore a new Marshall’s, but upon arrival she noticed that all the other parents were hanging around.  Dammit.  Because she knew no one in the room and was not interested in staring at the wall or sitting by herself all evening while her kiddos ran around with their friends, she engaged in what we in the tribe refer to as Jewish geography.  Here’s how it works: With the knowledge that several (okay, most) of the other attendants are Jewish, you start a conversation with questions like, “What do you do? Oh, you’re a lawyer? Which firm? You must know my so and so“ or…

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Stop Encouraging Your Child to be Trans

Great Blog!

LET THE BOY(S) BE

I wasn’t sure how to title this entry.  The runner-up: Stop Encouraging Your Trans Child, but that would not capture the Trump-sized misconception that parents are encouraging their cis children to be trans. No need to reread that sentence, you read it correctly the first time.

A lot of negative comments I receive revolve around this notion; that parents, in some twisted, gender bending way, are molding their children to be trans.  Here’s an example comment:

“Are you serious? You encourage this in a 7 year-old? This is insane.”

I would liken me “encouraging” my child to be trans to me encouraging my 5-year-old to have autism.  The notion that I had a typically developing boy, who I then encouraged to be trans, or perhaps didn’t discourage enough to not be trans…that, my friendis insane.

Many families of trans children go through a harrowing process of understanding…

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What It Feels Like To Raise A Gender Nonconforming Child

Thank you! Once again you have explained how I feel.

Raising My Rainbow

IMG_2926I feel like I don’t always do a perfect job of explaining what it feels like to raise a gender nonconforming child (even though I’m usually pretty good with words).

I recently ran across Emily Perl Kingsley’s essay titled “Welcome to Holland” and it describes my parenting experience perfectly. I am not raising a child with a disability (like Kingsley is/was), but my child does have unique needs and his life — our life — looks much different than what I envisioned when the ultrasound technician told me that he was boy. I wouldn’t change it for the world, but it took me some time to adjust.

WELCOME TO HOLLAND

by
 Emily Perl Kingsley

I am often asked to describe the experience of raising a child with a disability – to try to help people who have not shared that unique experience to understand it, to imagine how it would…

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Music Video Exclusive: Tom Goss’s Breath and Sound

Beautiful song and video!

Raising My Rainbow

I met award-winning musician Tom Goss when he asked our family to appear in the music video for his song “Illuminate The Dark” – a song about the devastating effects of negatively judging people based on looks and before knowing anything about them. My sons fell in love with Goss instantly because he sings, plays guitar and can do flips on a trampoline. I fell in love with Goss because of his voice, his LGBTQ advocacy work and because he overflows with kindness.

When he allowed me a sneak peak of the music video for his new song “Breath & Sound,” its beauty, simplicity and powerful message held me captive. “Breath & Sound” illustrates through lyrical dance that the act of falling in love and the cadence of a relationship is the same for all couples, regardless of sexual orientation, gender or color.

I recently sat down with Goss to talk…

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Cait

George. Jessie. Love.

Please watch it.  I wasn’t really planning on it myself, but I set the DVR just in case I changed my mind.  About twenty minutes after it began to air, I hopped on, only partially attentive.  “I Am Cait” was simply excellent.

iamcait

I feared it would be a three ring circus.  It was not.

I worried that it would be fluff.  It was not.

I assumed that the presence of the Karsdashians would destroy any authenticity.  It did not.

I thought it would focus on the “pretty” and not address the deep, dark and scary.  It did not.  And it did.

Caitlyn, her story, her family and yes, even Kylie, Kim and Kanye showed a depth of acceptance, honesty and understanding that I was quite sure they never thought they would have to…and publicly at that.

I appreciated and empathized with Esther Jenner: she screwed up pronouns, acknowledged her fears…

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Miley Cyrus; Not a book to judge by its cover!

Great Blog!

LEXIE CANNES STATE OF TRANS

miley cyrus transgender transLEXIE CANNES STATE OF TRANS — I might have done just that.

It was merely amusing, I thought, back when Miley Cyrus dumped the whole Hannah Montana scene and went twerking on National TV. The half-life of a child performer is notoriously short, and presumably, Miley decided make a last dash for cash before her fame flamed out. She only needed to look at her Dad, Billy Ray Cyrus, to picture what laid beyond the horizon career-wise.

As we all know now, the dash for cash turned out to be a wildy successful reinvention of herself. One need not like her music, attention-getting tactics or twerking to be in awe of her marketing shrewdness.

But it’s not all about money for Miley Cyrus. Most recently, she’s taking it upon herself to speak out on social issues in our society — the kind that jeopardizes personal cash flow. It takes extraordinary…

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Book Review: Tina Seskis One Step too far.

I received this Tina Seskis book in Oct as an advanced readers edition through Goodreads. Belonging to two book clubs and having a stack of books to read I didn’t start reading it till Jan 2015.

I gave this book a rating of three stars. I liked it but I can’t rave over it.

I found it intriguing that Emily (Cat) left her family . What was the big secret? At first I thought it was obvious. She killed her child then I thought it was her sister. The story is told through flashbacks as you hear Cats story. There are many characters and it gets a little confusing as you hear everyone’s story. I don’t know how valuable it was hearing all the stories as I was mostly interested in Cat and Angels characters. I found it interesting how easy it was for Cat to start new. In one week she basically found a home, a friend and a new job. I don’t think it’s quite that easy but then again she did have some money. I also wondered why her husband didn’t hire a PI to find her. She was using her own name and her passport. Luckily or unlucky at the end it was easy to find her as she was involved in the suspected murderer of a famous footballer. I found the end of the book a little bit different than the rest of the book, it seemed rushed to tidy up all the ends.

It would make a good book for book clubs as it provides lots of discussion topics. Who hasn’t thought of leaving their life and starting again. How grief of losing a child changes you. And of course how much does family dynamics shape your behaviour.