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Raising My Rainbow
  RAISING MY RAINBOW

Reflections: Raising My Rainbow Turns Two

Well, hello there 2013, what do you have in store for us this year?

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A friend of mine doesn’t like odd-numbered years because they are typically unlucky for her.  I thought back on my odd-numbered years.  My odd-numbered years include graduation from high school, graduation from college, getting married, having C.J.’s Brother, having C.J. and starting this blog.

If I didn’t want to jinx myself, I’d say that odd-numbered years have always been good to me.

Two years ago I started Raising My Rainbow because I had an almost-3-year-old boy who liked “girl toys” and “girl clothes.”  I was full of questions and anxiety. I didn’t know what was going on with my son and his preferences.  I didn’t know what I was supposed to do as his parent.  I had a million questions but no answers.  I used humor and writing to cope and started to feel my way down a path I hadn’t ever expected to take.

Then, things got emotional as my readers educated me, and I realized that the simple act of my son playing with a doll could be a signal of much bigger things to come.  Was our son a girl born into the body of a boy?  Was he transgender, transsexual, effeminate, gay, gender queer, gender fluid, gender creative, gender nonconforming, or something else?

What do those terms really mean anyway?

As parents, my husband and I have asked each other and ourselves questions that we never anticipated.  What if our son is gay?  What if our son is bullied?  What do we do when our third grader threatens suicide because he’s bullied for having a gender nonconforming brother?  Ten years from now, will we have two sons or one son and one daughter?

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During the last two years, we slowly got to the point where we knew the answer to each of the questions above and dozens of others.  It’s the same answer, no matter the question: We’ll deal with it.  We’ll love, support and provide a safe home for our children no matter what.  Realizing that answer gave us power and reassurance.

We’ll deal with it.  We’ll deal with it.  We’ll.  Deal.  With.  It.

We began to own our differences.  All of us: Me, C.J.’s Dad, C.J.’s Brother and C.J.  We began to live free of shame.  Then, four months ago, C.J. started kindergarten and stopped owning it.  We’ve watched as our diva son who was once brimming with confidence and self-assuredness realized that his peers had less-than-favorable opinions about what he liked and wore, about how he talked and walked, about how he sat with his legs crossed like a girl and had a wrist that went limp when not kept in check.

There was a time when our gender-creative son didn’t care about what other people thought about him, but we did—big time. We were stuck caring what others would think or say or do.  He owned it, but we didn’t.  We followed his lead. We caught up. And, when we started owning it and not giving a shit about the reactions and judgments of others, C.J. started noticing and caring and adjusting his behaviors accordingly.  It felt like we were two steps behind.  We caught up to him. We were all at the same point for a time, holding hands.  And, then C.J. took a step back, yanking us back with him.

Back we went, following his lead. Loving him, not changing him.

When I started this blog I promised myself that I’d write for a year and reassess.  I did that and decided to continue writing for another year and reassess.  I just spent two weeks doing that.  I’ve decided to give it another year.  And, I’ll need your help, feedback and support more than ever before as we enter a new phase.

I hope that you’ll continue to follow and be a part of our adventures.  There’s comfort in knowing that you care and are cheering us on.

Let’s make 2013 fabulous!

Xoxo,

Mom, Dad, Brother and C.J.

By:           Raising My Rainbow
On:           Jan 10, 2013
Tagged: , , ,

  • 6 Comments
    • Cam
      Cam

      This woman’s updates are always interesting, either entertaining, or thoughtful. Glad that she is continuing.

      Jan 10, 2013 at 1:41 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Mr. Enemabag Jones
      Mr. Enemabag Jones

      Can’t believe it’s been two years already. Looking forward to the next year, and what it brings this family.

      Jan 10, 2013 at 3:40 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Gray
      Gray

      I am a long time Queerty reader. I have been reading queerty for about 4-5 years now. Until now, I have refrained from commenting. This story is important enough for me to finally make an account and start. Thank you for what you are doing. This blog has been truly inspiring. I did not come out until my Junior year of college. I had to be away from home for three full years before I could feel far enough away and my own person enough to be who I really am. That is not how any child or person should feel. There were definitely reasons my parents should have known that I am gay. I always played dress up with my sister. Even when I was 11-12 my favorite thing to do was sit under the dining room table and braid my little sister’s hair all afternoon. Even when I had obvious crushes on the boy lifeguards instead of the girl lifeguards, even when I got caught on the computer looking at boys instead of girls, even when I painted my nails while at a summer volleyball camp and when I was the only boy in the fourth grade that wanted to take ballet with they girls. All the while my parents continued to ignore what, looking back, must have been painfully obvious. They never even asked me. The support you give your son will have a major impact on his life. I have turned out just fine. I am a naval officer now and I love my parents for all they gave me while growing up. Had it not been for my mom sacrificing a lot, I would not be where I am today, and I love her for it. I still did miss that crucial part of being able to be myself, my true self while I was growing up. Reading this blog inspires me. It is a highlight of all my blog/news reading everytime you publish a new entry. You are amazing parents and you are having such a positive impact on your son’s life. Take it from me. He will be all the better for it. Thank you for sharing.You are truly an inspiring family.

      Jan 11, 2013 at 1:22 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • orcanyc
      orcanyc

      You guys are the best. Keep up the loving.

      Jan 11, 2013 at 10:18 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • biscuit_batter
      biscuit_batter

      This is one lucky kid. You prove that love and support is what matters most in raising a child. You are a true inspiration to ALL parents. No child is perfect, but they are all unique and its time we embrace the differences. Thank you for sharing your story!

      Jan 13, 2013 at 1:44 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Dixie Rect
      Dixie Rect

      This is such a pile of crap. Lies too. This woman is a fraud.

      Dec 1, 2013 at 4:44 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·

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