This afternoon was very special and one I’ll never forget. At the 2015 PFLAG National Convention Awards Luncheon, I enjoyed lunch with my husband Matt, PFLAG Executive Director Jody Huckaby, Caitlyn Jenner’s sister Pam Mettler, Betty DeGeneres and others. Then, I was awarded the PFLAG Flag Bearer Award.
The PFLAG Flag Bearer Award honors outstanding LGBTQ advocacy outside of the PFLAG framework and acknowledges the recipient’s accomplishments and lasting contributions to the safety and/or equality of our LGBTQ children, family and friends.
Following is my acceptance speech. I hope you’ll read it and understand how important PFLAG is to me and how thankful I am to be the 2015 PFLAG Flag Bearer.
Days after my brother came out 23 years ago, my aunt sent my mom a packet of literature from an organization called PFLAG. On top of the photocopies was a note that read, “When you are ready, I think you should check out PFLAG.”
My mom wasn’t ready, so I went by myself. And I fell in love with PFLAG, because at that time, they were the only group of people to tell me that there was nothing wrong with having a gay brother.
Five years ago when my youngest son started showing signs of being transgender or gender nonconforming, I knew where I needed to go to feel love, acceptance and support. I went back to PFLAG.
PFLAG is the most supportive support group I’ve ever seen; it’s good for my soul; it’s what church should feel like.
On my blog, in my book and when I speak, I tell friends, families, allies and members of the LGBTQ community, if you don’t know where to go, go to PFLAG.
PFLAG also taught me that one mom can make a difference. I used to say “I’m just a mom.” After learning about PFLAG founder Jeanne Manford, I started leaving off the just. I’m not just a mom. I’m a mom. And as Jeanne showed us being a mom is a very powerful thing. Moms can be fierce advocates and world changers.
Thank you PFLAG, I value this recognition more than you will ever know. And thank you to my amazing husband Matt I couldn’t have a better partner in life or on this unique parenting journey. You prove that dads are pretty cool too.