The Big Gay Race

“Thank you for being here.” He caught my eye, smiled my way.

My family stood by his, our shadows criss-crossing.

The morning’s crisp gave way to daytime’s warmth. The sun glinted, circling us, reflecting against sunglasses and signs and tiny silver pins connecting our numbers to our shirts, branding each one of us Present.

The breeze blew his graying hair, he lifted his sunglasses, revealing his eyes,

Touching his partner’s arm with one hand, he pointed to our kids, our shirts, our Here with the other.

“We’re happy to be here,” Jason answered, shaking his hand, patting his back. He’s always just right in these moments.

With his eye crinkles and crooked smile and the chin tilt that he saves for his sincerest of times, he speaks his heart with ease.

And I, stand by his side and Teary Smile.

“We are. Happy to be here. Thank you.” I stumble, displaying my own heart with the only wrapping and ribbon I have, the only ones I know.

“Thank you,” He squeezes my hand; his ribbon.

Our family did The Big Gay Race this weekend.

I TearySmiled my way through it.

I TearySmiled when Chloe jogged ahead and when Kayli met my stride and when Jason and I passed Brody hand to hand just like we did when he was the right size to pass and when my sister-in-law finished the run with better chops than she thought she had in her.

Because when you stand shoulder to shoulder with so many people who think like you and feel like you and wish with every fiber of their being for HappilyEverAfters like you, that’s what you do.

You put one foot in front of the other, and you TearySmile.

“Anything you can do, I can do better. I can do anything better than you. No, you can’t. Yes, I can.”

“I don’t want to go.” Chloe said the day before the race, skating the edge of whine and sass, but not quite slipping into it. “I want to go to soccer.” Shoulders back, chin up, mouth set.

“That’s not a choice.” I said, uncharacteristically calm. “We’re doing this one as a family.”

“But why?” Her arms crossed, she meant business.

I matched her gaze, I meant business, too.

Reaching over the hum of music and the stream of sunshine and the safety of comfort, I told my girl what she already knew – that our family believes that love is love, and that people should marry who they love.

And then, I splayed what I’ve kept from her. What I’ve held within my mothering hands, closed tight, shielded, untouchable.

“Not everyone believes that.” I tucked a single strand of hair behind one ear, my voice wavered.

She sat up, met my eyes, and listened, really listened.

What I told her is what I want my children to know.

We stand for what’s right, because it’s the only thing to do. Because if not us, then who. And because not standing up, is the same as pushing down.

So our family did The Big Gay Race this weekend, and we were all (truly) happy to be there.

***

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Comments

  1. You have the loveliest heart. And you are growing your children to be the same. Which is amazing and gorgeous, and not surprising. xo

  2. Wonderful post, Galit! (and girl – you look GREAT!)
    Your family and my family would get along really well.

  3. Beautiful my friend. We were so sad to miss it this weekend when I went out of town. What a turn-out. What a purpose. Beautiful.

  4. ” when you stand shoulder to shoulder with so many people who think like you and feel like you” YES! there is nothing like that feeling. Reading your words here today makes me feel that way. It is wonderful to find people who are all in with the same language my heart speaks. I so often feel like this here, especially when it comes to reading about how you are fostering this language in/with your children. Thank you for helping me feel connected!

  5. Thank you Galit. What you and your family did was stand up to support my marriage and for that I am truly thankful and indebted to you.

  6. And I’m so hopeful that Minnesota will vote the right way. That it will become one of the states where love and not prejudice can win the day. GO TEAM BREEN!

  7. I absolutely love this! I wish more people would show the world love like your family did.

  8. I love you. #thatisall

    I shared this on my FB page and Gay Dad Project’s FB page as well (but couldn’t tag you there). Also tweeted it out!

    xoxox

  9. “And because not standing up, is the same as pushing down.” – oh this is it. the heart of it. You don’t have to stand up loud and accusatory. We can show up with teary smiles. Let our steps be our voice. Showing up to shore up those who are weary.

  10. I teary smiled through your post. I only wish we had a Big Gay Race in Portland :)

  11. I have been teaching my girls since they were small that families and love can be made with all different kinds of combinations. I want them to know all of this as the normal. I’m proud to call you a friend, Galit. This was such a wonderful thing to share as a family. You’re children are going to be wonderful adults with how you and Jason share life and love with them. xoxo

  12. Galit, I adore you, truly.
    I have never participated in such an experience, but it must be amazing. I love the way you have described the camaraderie of the experience.
    I love your heart, and the way you are teaching your children that love is, well, love. And making it not just a part of your words but a part of your actions and a part of your family is such an inspiration.
    Thank you so much for sharing, beautiful you.

  13. I am so proud of you and your family for taking part in the race and showing your support!

    One day it will be totally acceptable to marry who ever you choose without prejudice.

  14. No other word than love will represent how beautiful this is. You are amazing and a beautiful woman and mama. Thank you for sharing your day with us.

  15. The calm is uncharacteristic of you? Hard for me to believe.
    Oh, I know those teary smiles. I just never had a name for them!

    And on another note. I worked with Dawn to choose such fun items from her etsy shop. Will be snapping some photos and writing about them and the experience and Memories Captured soon. Life has just been happening too quickly lately. Thanks!

  16. Oh, this made me TearySmile too.

  17. Beautiful! And as I read, I read through teary eyes… Love your heart and your family!

  18. Wonderful, Galit! You are teaching your children the most wonderful of things…LOVE!!!

    P.S. Holy crap, girl, how much weight have you lost? You look fabulous!!!!

  19. Oh this makes me love you even more than I already did if that is possible. I want the Big Gay Race to come to my town!

  20. You brought me to the race with your writing and I TearySmiled my way through. Beautiful.

  21. Galit, this is wonderful! He said with a TearySmile….
    “Because when you stand shoulder to shoulder with so many people who think like you and feel like you and wish with every fiber of their being for HappilyEverAfters like you, that’s what you do.”
    Yes it is! I love this! Thank you so much….it all helps.

  22. Your words here are so beautiful, Galit. And I couldn’t agree more with you and the message you’re passing alon to your children. If not you, then who? Thank you from one mama to another, but even maybe more importantly one human to another. We’re in this together aren’t we? Big tearysmiles and all :)

  23. I love this post. Beauty at its most raw. If more people thought like you, this world would be a much better place to live. Love, love, love.

  24. Wonderful. We are like-minded. Love is love.

  25. keely weiland says:

    Best. Post. Ever. BEAUTIFUL FOR A THOUSAND REASONS. Love you.

  26. I applaud you as every mother has their own hill to climb when it comes to things like this. I only hope I can be as gracious as you in explaining why I believe what I do since I have different views on this topic. While I teach my children tolerance and acceptance, I would be a hypocrite if I encouraged them to support something that goes against what we believe personally whether it’s right in my eyes or wrong in society as a whole. Whatever we believe we have to show our children to believe what we believe in Love as you have. That is all we can do. Blessings to you! <3

  27. YESSSSS!!!!! Love this, Galit!

    Jen :)

  28. SO fantastic! Love that you guys did this as a family. And although this is so shallow and not at all the point of the post, you totally rocked that fabulous pink running shirt.

  29. This –> “We stand for what’s right, because it’s the only thing to do. Because if not us, then who. And because not standing up, is the same as pushing down.” I love this. I love that you did this as a family too and clearly your warm, kind, loving heart is shining an incredible path for your children. (PS love their new room too!)

  30. Oh Galit, I love this. I love that you stand up for what you believe in and are teaching your children to do the same. I am trying to teach my kids that love is love, no matter who it is with, and I hope that they can see this too. Love this!

  31. Absolutely beautiful. I wish there was one near me I could partake in!

  32. I wish they had a similar run here in the Cincinnati area… Coming from a married lesbian (we were married in Toronto almost 5 years ago and it still isn’t recognized here) it means so much to me to see your family support and take part in this run. Thank you. Seriously, thank you for your support.

  33. This is a great post! I am an ally too and if I had something like this near where I live I would have been there!

    Thank you for teaching your family that love is love, no matter what!

  34. I am big teary smiling just reading this! Because dammit, all of us deserve happily ever after! I am so glad you stood up and made your opinion known.

  35. I love that you did this as a family and again am moved by your words! xoxo

  36. I have 3 best friends who are gay. 2 of them got married. It was a beautiful thing. It shouldn’t matter who you love. We are all the same.
    Good for you for doing something so important.

  37. I echo all the comments on how great you look. Especially the joy-filled smiles in those pictures with your children. They will always see their mother as a woman of love, compassion and passion. What a gift you give to them.

  38. TearySmile. So awesome. I wish we had one of these in Spokane.

  39. Perfectly expressed, like always. And, I’d totally Big Gay Race with you. All day long. Or until I pass out, which sadly, probably wouldn’t actually be very long at all. I’d do a marathon with you in my heart though. Totally.

  40. Awesome. Just awesome.

  41. That is awesome you had your kids do this with you. I think it will really help them to have an open mind as they grow up

  42. I am so inspired that you did this with your children and it was no easy task. That made the lesson more memorable, I am sure.

  43. Oh YOU! And your amazing family, all together, spreading the love of love! I just well, LOVE it! ;) Truly inspiring, my friend. xoxoxoxo

  44. I love that it’s called The Big Gay Race…and I love that your daughter listened to your words…

  45. Teary smiling. Beautiful in every way.

  46. Beautiful. If I had been in town I would have done it too. I was very disheartening to see the sudden onslaught of vote yes signs when I got back. This shouldn’t be close. This shouldn’t be a question. I truly hope in the end that Minnesotans rally together and vote no.

  47. Your family has a huge heart!

  48. OH my! You guys are gorgeous!! And you are gorgeous inside and out…

  49. I couldn’t love this more. I could go on for pages about the people I know and the struggles they face and the tears I shed when I think of the discrimination….toward people very, very close to my heart. But all I can think to say is that I couldn’t love this more. Thank you. xoxo

  50. Wonderful :-)

  51. You are simply the best, Galit. You set such a wonderful example for your children, simply by being there and showing them right in life. Thanks for this.

Trackbacks

  1. [...] The Big Gay Race “We stand for what’s right, because it’s the only thing to do. Because if not us, then who. And because not standing up, is the same as pushing down.” Galit has the most amazing way with words, no matter the topic and I love everything that this post stands for. [...]

  2. [...] The Big Gay Race in this blog post Galit (her blog is These Little Waves) recaps her experience with running The Big Gay Race , I want to put aside the fact that this post is incredibly well written and the photos are fantastic, this post actually brought me to TEARS. “Because when you stand shoulder to shoulder with so many people who think like you and feel like you and wish with every fiber of their being for HappilyEverAfters like you, that’s what you do.” is one excerpt that I love from this blog post, but what I really love, what really brought tears to my eyes and a smile is the conversation she had with her daughter that she shares with her readers. [...]

  3. [...] the fortune of working with many great people. One of those individuals recently shared with me a blog post his wife penned after their family completed the Big Gay [...]

  4. [...] never join a group with ease, not stand up for what I believe, or fake smoothed [...]

  5. [...] centered my choices and my ways and my being around focusing on what’s important, who I want to be, how I want to be thought of and how I want to make others [...]

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