For a while I was obsessed with reading stories about parents’ journeys with their transgender child. I abandoned all knowledge that our own thoughts are the source of our feelings and was sure I would find the story that aligned with mine, allowing me to feel understood.
There are parents who knew from birth. There are children who came out as adults but knew for years. There were HUNDREDS of them. But I couldn’t find our story. And while I kept searching, I knew why. There are no stories that are the same.
This was true when one of my children had leaky gut syndrome. This was true when one of my children contracted Lymes Disease. This was true when my mom developed Alzheimer’s Disease. Yet I still believed finding “THE story” would solve for my lack of understanding of my child and myself.
I’d like to say I abandoned my search quickly, had a spiritual epiphany, and began living the truth that I create my own reality within a moment. But that is so far from the truth I would be struck with lightning on a sunny day. While I was fully accepting of my child, quickly began learning and growing with my journey, I still believed “I’ve lost my daughter.”
I will write on the natural grieving process that often occurs for us as parents of transgender children later. It is very important we fully feel the experience and work through it. But it’s the working through it where so many of my clients get stuck as well as where I was stuck in this story.
In seeking a story that was just like ours, I was missing that this story IS ours. Our story was being written and IS being written. I was dwelling in the space of what was instead of what is. And I began to write our story.
Are there memories of knowing my child was unique? Definitely. Have I made epic mistakes? So many. But the path is perfect. There will be no story like ours. And as I learned to be accepting of our path and how beautiful it is, I no longer saw anyone but my son.
I don’t know the exact day I knew. One day I just knew I never had a daughter- I just thought I did. My child was the same each and every day, a human being growing and changing like the rest of us. He is brilliant, courageous, and strong. My writing changed, my vision changed. Everything just changed and I stopped resisting it.
The story we are writing has many interesting chapters before today and will have may more after. They will be full of unique challenges that only other LGBTQIA+ parents will understand. Other parents will come to our story to find understanding, share tears and laughter (who else has tried on their child’s binder in secret?)
Our story matters. And your story matters. We will share some experiences that others will never have. How we think about and allow ourselves to feel through these experiences as well as the choices we make in how we want to write this story are everything.
This is what I do in coaching. I help other parents and supporters see what’s going on in their brain that is holding them back from their relationships with themselves, their child, their families and their dreams. We move out of the stuck moments and into the new chapter of your story. Come tell me your story. A conversation is always free. Come find me here: www.calendly.com/sarahkennedycoaching.