When I first moved to Eden in 2017 with my son, I didn’t know what to expect. I received a housing opportunity that I didn’t want to pass up, and even though the area is more rural than I would like, it was close to Greensboro and Danville, VA. Shortly after my move, I met my (now) fiancé Jordan. Jordan and my son Karlos quickly clicked. Karlos was only a year old, and had just learned to walk. I should probably specify now that Jordan is a woman, a very fierce hard working woman.
The last two years here Jordan and I have met many friends, some among the LGBTQ+ community. Karlos and Jordan have formed a unique bond and are best buds. Karlos knows mommy brought another mommy for him, and he’s so appreciative for her. He waits by the window for her to finish work, and when she opens the car door he calls her name, “Jor Jor.” I’ve taught him from a young age to accept people as they are, and to honor their wishes and identities.
I wasn’t sure at first how people in Eden would treat us, a same sex couple with a toddler, but I was pleasantly surprised. The people here are much more open minded than I originally imagined. I did have one experience in the work place, my previous boss said to me condescendingly, “so you’re gay and you didn’t think to tell me that?” Her behavior toward me made me so uncomfortable I quit that job. Her ill treatment and harsh words hurt my feelings, but I didn’t let it bog me down.
I met a man in Eden through my work, he always seemed to himself & I knew he had to be gay! I sparked a conversation with him one day, and he told me his husband died doing what he loved to do, “loving me.” That broke me down. People will kill another person because they love the same sex. I promise we can’t help it. If we could, don’t you think we would try to be like the majority so we aren’t outcast?
I fear for my kid. I hope he never has to wake up one day to find his mamas are gone because someone hated same sex relationships so much they decided to take our lives. It hurts knowing my kid has to grow up in a society like this where he has all these labels and expectations to live by. I’ll never stop telling my child, “find happiness in who you are and live by it, never settle for less, and never judge the next. Simply be you. No labels. No gender. Just you, Pookie.”
Nicki Faircloth, a member of the Women AdvaNCe Leadership Team, interviewed her beloved sister, Bri, for this piece.