Tall, Tall Trees

The anxiety is there, I’m not going to lie. It’s been there since my brother and I had our moment of reconciliation months ago. I knew this time would come. And it has. Saturday will be the first time Noah and I have seen my parents in twenty months. Almost exactly. That’s almost two years.

My baby brother is getting married Saturday and Noah & I will be in attendance. We wouldn’t miss it for the world. He’s my baby brother, after all. But along with the joy and celebration, for me, will come anxiety and tension.

My parents do not approve of how I raise my son. They don’t understand or approve of why he’s not vaccinated. They do not get why I’m raising him vegan. They draw the line at me letting him wear pink, sparkles and whatever the hell else he wants to wear. There were always moments of discomfort. Always comments about him being a sissy. Always heated, belligerent episodes from my dad. The point was finally made clear on my grandfather’s death bed as my mother tried to physically remove us from the hospital room because my son was in pink, head to toe, with fairy wings as a special touch. I never did get to really tell my grandpa goodbye. He passed the next morning before I could sneak back to see him. It took four months of back and forth but I finally cut ties. I couldn’t handle the emotional ups and downs and, more importantly, no longer would I allow anyone the ability to love my son conditionally. He deserves more than that and so do I.

Twenty months. Twenty months and he still is the same Noah. Happy, sweet, smart, healthy and free to be whomever he chooses. I will fight to the grave to make sure no one takes that away from him. If only they could look past their own insecurities to see that he’s an amazing child who has so much to teach all of us. If only they would look past their vanity and pride to see a child who has more confidence than both of them combined. If only they would step back and allow us the opportunity to just be. And then maybe, just maybe, love us for who we are.

It’s OK, though. We will stand proud like the tall, tall trees of the forest. We will do it with the same quiet grace. We may tremble in the wind and sway in the storms but, in the end, we will stretch our limbs and reach high for the sun. We will feel it’s warm embrace and know that, within our own forest, we are loved. Unconditionally.

This entry was published on 22 May 2012 at 3:20 am. It’s filed under Uncategorized and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink. Follow any comments here with the RSS feed for this post.

7 thoughts on “Tall, Tall Trees

  1. Michelle. Thank you for this. Your way with words…with truth and unconditional love… I am grateful to know you AND Noah.

  2. Thank you, ladies. xo

  3. Good luck! I know how it is with family that you’ve had to break it off with, my heart is with you. ❤

  4. First, thank you SO much for sharing your son and your story. My 5yo son also likes sparkles and pink and reading this blog really helps me navigate things, you are a role model to me. I hope you do not mind me asking some nosey and dumb questions. How do you handle clothes shopping that he has so much “girl” and “boy” stuff, do you just shop both sides? Man I wish they put all kid stuff together? Also curious about your decision to home-school, what were your reasons? N is starting kindergarten in the Fall so I am curious about all options.
    Good luck at the wedding, and post some pics of Noah dressed up, he is gorgeous.

    • Thank you so much for the kind words! The wedding went VERY well and I’ll be blogging about it soon! :O) I’m glad that we can help others fight off the ridiculous gender stereotypes that our society has created. We do most of our shopping at a children’s second hand store called Once Upon A Child and yes, we always shop both sides. Generally, he goes straight to the “girl” section first because he knows that he’ll find more of what he wants there. Lately, though, with the 80’s style neon colors becoming popular again, we’ve had luck in the “boy” section, too! :O) We homeschool part-time and we are a part of a hybrid curriculum where he’s in class two days a week. I get asked about homeschooling a lot and I really need to find time to post about my educational decisions soon. I wanted to homeschool even before he was making choices for himself that went against the societal grain. We’ve actually had a GREAT response from the faculty and students at his hybrid school and we’ve had nothing but support on their end…it’s amazing, really! Does your little one have to wear a uniform or will he have the freedom to dress as he wishes? The two days that we are in school he’s in uniform but he can wear whatever color polo he wants so he wears pink. :O) And thanks, regarding Noah…I think he’s pretty cute, too, but I might be a bit biased!

  5. girlforgetful on said:

    That’s a great analogy, tall tall trees. Your strength through the tough times is inspirational. Much continued happiness to you and your family. Thanks for sharing.

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