A Letter to my Grandson
You’re coming up on a birthday in less than two weeks. Which one is it? 14, if I remember correctly. And at the same time, you are in one way less than a year old. I’m referring, of course, to the time you realized — and decided to live with — the fact that you weren’t the daughter and granddaughter we all assumed you were.
Mistakenly assumed, as it turned out.
But so what? Your mother loves you and accepts you for who you are, and I — your Trans grandmother — do, too. Your mother — my daughter — told me that your coming out was both painful and joyful for her. Painful, because she had to mourn the death of her own daughter, and joyful because she had a new son. Three of you, now.
I sympathize with her having to raise three boys; my own mother went through the same thing, so I know how hard it can be. But having met you before, and texting back and forth with you, as well as our phone conversations, I’ve already seen the positive way in which your wonderful family interacts, and I know things will continue that way into the future.
But that’s not to say that from now on it’s all going to be hearts and flowers, or the classic peace-love-doves-incense-beads-and light shows; far from it. Even in the relatively-enlightened 21st century, there are still areas of widespread ignorance about us. And ignorance breeds contempt, bigotry, and prejudice. I’m just thankful that we both live in states where we are, if not completely accepted, at least have the same legal protections that everyone else enjoys.
Oh, my dear sweet boy! (Stop blushing: I’m your grandmother, so I have every right to call you silly sappy names.) I envy you in so many ways. I envy your youth and the fact that you came to the realization of your true self during that youth, and not later in life, like me (it took me almost 60 years).
But above all, I envy the new world that you and your generation are going to shape and mold into being: a world where everyone is finally accepted for who they are, rather than their sex or gender or color or whatever other man-made labels we use to separate each other.
If I have one regret in all this, it’s that I didn’t know you sooner and that we live at opposite ends of the country. But for all that, you are indeed my grandson, and I love you far more than I can ever express in words.
I could go on and tell you I’m always here for you, but you already know that.