Last week I shared about how giving time to those you love when you come out is a tricky dance. You have to respect their insecurities and your own vulnerability. Read it here

Olivia and I moved to Austin, Texas in July 2019. One of my sisters and her husband already lived within an hour of the city, and my other sister was already in Houston, less than 4 hours away. My parents then had plans to retire outside of Austin as well.

It seemed everyone was moving here and this would be the new gathering place.

When I started my coming out journey ten years ago, I never would have thought I would have wanted to be that close to my family.

Conversations were tense for years. Holidays were awkward. Small-talk was the norm because nothing else was as simple.

Planning a wedding in 2016 felt a lot like coming out. Family was uncomfortable and we felt very much on our own. At the beginning of planning, I was sending my mom photos and links, and eventually those texts went unanswered. I ordered my wedding dress online, because the thought of going to try on dresses without my mom hurt too much. 

But the wedding was beautiful and happy and fun. Just as it should have been.

And somehow, after that, everything changed.

The energy in our conversations shifted, the small-talk began to fade, and humor began to resurface. 

It seemed that a public display of wow, these same-named women are happy and in love just like all the other couples normalized our love within our family.

I can’t fully explain it, but I can fully be grateful for it. More on that story here.

So when it became clear a few years ago that my whole family would be in Texas, Olivia and I uprooted our life in North Carolina so we could land where we are.

Ten years ago I was begging for space from them, and then eight years later we moved across the country to be near to them.

This tells me that:

Time given means time gives back.

I may have had to give my dad time to think about whether he would walk me down the aisle, but he did.

I had to give my family time, but time gave me back my family.

So now, my family gathers every weekend for a meal. We rotate houses of who hosts, and we watch sunsets together. We laugh together every week.

It all feels so normal now.

Time does not heal all wounds but again – time given gives back.

Keep hope close. 

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