A Note to My Kid gives the LGBTQ community, their parents, families and friends the opportunity to share their unconditional love with one another.
The site also gives anyone the opportunity to share uplifting, personal stories relating to the LGBTQ community.
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You are an amazing child. You will grow into a wonderful person and you will be a great role model for your younger brother and sister. Be true to yourself and don't let anyone force you into a box that doesn't fit for you. Papa and I love you very much. When people give you a hard time for being different or standing out, we will always have your back. Whenever it gets too scary out there, you will always have a safe place at home where you are loved. You are so brave and I am very proud of you.
I want you to know how proud I am of you and I am certain that as you grow, you will become a great young man that will be of great benefit to the world you have privileged to live in. Your father and I have great hopes for you and with prayer, we are certain that you will do PHENOMENALLY well. God has blessed us with you and our gift back to you is that we tell you everything required to be successful in this world. You have been blessed to come from a strand of reasonably successful and strong people. You deserve to have the best but this will not happen unless you know the ingredients to life. We are required to give you those ingredients.
I don't really know how heaven works because you might already know everything I'm about to say but just in case you don't there's some things I want you to know. I love you so much and it hurts so bad that you were not here in June to celebrate Riley's wedding with us. We all missed you. Riley and Abby left an empty place for you, and so Lindsey was the only bridesmaid who walked unescorted down the aisle, because you should have been at her side. Your handsome face and easy laugh would have made the day complete for me.
That said, I am not angry that you relapsed on that day in late June 2009. I know you did not intend to let things get out of hand like they did. In fact I would not be bitter or angry even if you had taken your life. I have nothing but compassion and respect for how hard and how long you battled your difficulties. Only now by reading your journals, do I more fully realize how much pain and difficulty you were facing. Whenever I feel like I need a good cry, all I have to do is to pull them out, and it puts me in touch with the deep pain you were in...and how, as your earthly father, I let you down in many ways.
I am so very sorry for the things that I did to contribute to your despair. I so wish that I had known, back then, what I do know now. I thought I was so right when you first came out to us. Little did I know how much I had to learn. Please forgive me for letting fear control my decisions and the way I responded to you, instead of faith. I should have trusted God, who loves you so much more – and better - than I do, and who never stopped chasing after you.
I so regret how slow I was to truly understand and love you without any conditions.
But still you had so much grace for me. You were so patient with Mom and I, while we learned what really mattered. Thank you for trusting us with your deepest thoughts and fears and sharing so much of your experience as a gay teen, and a gay young adult, attempting to reconcile your faith with your sexuality. Thank you for all your letters and emails; the ones that made us laugh and the ones that made us cry.
Your handwritten letters are priceless to me. I so wish that I could introduce you to some of my dearest friends now, men and women who love Jesus with their whole hearts. They have helped me to understand that gay is not a deal breaker for God...that gay and Christian can co-exist, and that God isn't wringing His hands over this issue. He is way bigger than this. I know that God did not reject or abandon you, or anyone else, for being gay.
I wish I could take you to dinner tonight and tell you all the ways that your life blesses ours every day. We have learned so very much from you. Since your death, God has made Himself known to us in ways that we could never have imagined.
I so wish we could make that snowboarding trip to Mount Baker that we had planned.
I wish you could see how we’re still using the zip line you designed. I will never forget the joy on your face as you concocted yet another way to creatively fly across our back yard.
I wish I could take you backpacking again, and that we could talk and talk and talk as we hiked.
I wish you were here to have backyard bonfires, and to come up with ever increasingly crazy ways to alarm our neighbors.
I wish that we could have a barbeque on your roof, with the view of the Space Needle that we loved so much.
I wish you were here to help me hunt the raccoons that threaten to eat our Janie cat…I will NEVER forget the time you pegged that one 30 ft up in the tree in our front yard, and then 20 seconds later, got the second one on your first try.
I wish you could cook your specialty eggs in our kitchen, adding that fire sauce, while you sang funny songs and worship songs and whatever else came to mind.
I miss your voice.
I wish I could hold you again.
I love you, Ryan.
I miss you. Oh, how I miss you.
I am so very proud of you.
I am sorry for EVER wanting you to be anyone other than who God made you to be.
I am so very sorry for all the things I said that caused you to feel that I would love you more if you were straight.
I am sorry that mom and I made you think that who you were was a problem to be fixed.
I know now that you were EXACTLY who God intended…and that you were created PERFECTLY.
You were, and will always be, my beautiful, beautiful boy…
You will be her one and only forever love.
No force of man or nature will put limits on your devotion, commitment or protection of her heart, spirit, life. She will hold the soul within you tightly, letting go only because she knows you are watching to see that she falls softly.
She will be the joyful background music of every day you breathe. Every triumph or failure, from the tiny to the colossal, will mark your heart indelibly. Salty tears will well up at the sweetest moments. She will sit up on your shoulders and try to reach a star, and crumple at your feet with her first broken heart.
You will need your suit of armor, your cape, an arsenal of goodness and trust, and the family and friends who love you in order that you can ward off any evil that may come her way. From this moment on, you are her most fierce defender.
Somehow you knew. Somehow you knew she was part of you, even before she came along. A sleepy thought, feeling, a far off dream, a longing wish, and suddenly you can't remember a moment without her. Funny how that works.
Every day is a day to marvel at the blessing you have been given. You will never take anything for granted as you know the consequence. She will be the force that moves you now and forever to be the best man you can be. In her eyes you will see the reflection of the man you are, and only her judgement will have meaning. She is now the light that illuminates your world.
All your life you worked toward being the man you are. School, family, jobs, careers, relationships, adversity, and all the milestones and stepping stones in between..and here you are, standing at the brink of Fatherhood, answerable to only one tiny heart, for the rest of your days.
And nothing, NOTHING in God's very universe could feel any better.
You are two incredible men, Anthony and Scott. I love you so very much. God bless you and Isabella Grace!
When you were born and I first looked into your eyes I loved you more than anything in this world. When you were little I dressed you in prissy little girl clothes and loved it because that was what *I* wanted.
When you got older and developed your own style and personality (you remember the camo pants and combat boots!) I wanted my little girly girl back. I came to realize that I could not and would not try to make you into what I thought you should be. I had to let you find yourself and become who you were so you could be happy. Even then, I think I knew, in my heart, that you were gay.
I know how hard it was for you to come out to me. I remember the tears in your eyes and the look seeking acceptance and love then the relief when I assured you that I loved you no matter what. I know it was twice as hard to tell your father as he is more conservative in his views. I assure you that he does love you no matter what and although he may not totally understand yet, he wants you to be happy above all things.
I am proud of the young lady you have become. I am proud of the accomplishments you have made in life and the hard work you are putting in at college. You are a beautiful, amazing, young lady. I love you, period. Gay or straight you will always be that little baby that I fell in love with 19 years ago. It doesn't matter to me. I love and support you unconditionally.
You are my precious gift and are perfect just the way you are.
If you ever need me for anything at all I will always be here for you. I love you so very much.