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Gay and Happy
Kathy shares the story of Rosie's emotional coming out.
Hello, everyone! Did you miss us? Well, we’re back in a big, happy, gay way!
I’m going to start by telling you a little back-story. When my kids were small and they would often ask me, “Mommy, what does gay mean,” I would tell them “gay means happy.” In my determination never to lie to them, it was my way to give them a truthful answer that they would be satisfied with in their age-appropriate understanding. It also served another purpose. Instead of having to get into a difficult conversation that they wouldn’t even understand, I started a positive word association for them early on.
As they got older, we would have discussions and we would answer any questions in the best way we knew how. Through our discussions Rich and I thought surely they would eventually ask us about Aunt Rosie. But the question never came. I know what you’re all thinking, “How could that be?” I have to be honest and tell you why I was relieved it had not come up before. For years Rosie and I had our ups and downs, not unlike many siblings. Growing up I always felt that I was different than Rosie. We liked completely different things, but we always seemed to have fun. However, as we got older our differences would sometimes feel like a big wedge between us. Rosie would go from being so completely happy to other times when I would see such sadness and pain in her eyes. Sometimes she would even be so down and upset that we didn’t spend much time together at all. I always wished she would just say the words so the wedge would be gone and we could be as close as sisters are meant to be. I remember the day like it was yesterday. I had invited her to a party and she said she wouldn’t come. I was infuriated. Why was Rosie doing this? Why does she want to be so distant? I demanded an answer. Then it came, fast and furious. Rosie yelled at me, “I don’t want to come. I don’t fit in, because I’m gay!” My response was, “So what, nobody cares about that.” And then I followed with, “Phew, what took you so long? Everyone loves you for you.” And that was that. We hugged and we cried for a while.
Rosie came to the party and a load that had been lifted. What an unnecessary burden she had been carrying for so long. If only she had spoken to me sooner. If only I had demanded an explanation for her mood swings. I kept asking myself why I hadn’t approached her sooner. I could have helped her or even just been there to listen. I learned so much during this time. The most important lesson I learned is that everything comes about in its own time, and you can’t force something that’s not meant to happen. Life has an amazing way of putting things in your path at just the right time. Try hard to pay attention to the signs and learn the lessons that come your way. When you have true, honest moments in your life, embrace them and they will change your life forever.When Rosie started to pop up on camera, Rich and I knew it was time to talk to Victoria and Joseph. We didn’t want them to hear things from anyone else and then wonder why we never told them. The truth is, they never asked. Looking back I’m so glad that we waited, because at this point in Rosie’s life gay really does mean happy! It took a long time for Rosie to accept herself and yet with self-acceptance came peace, happiness, and love.
Our little family dinner at Hasbrouck Heights Pizza was the perfect spot to get together and enjoy some of our friend Celestino’s Italian specialties. The heartfelt conversation that Rosie had with Victoria and Joseph was an important one for everyone to see. I admire Rosie so much for being incredibly brave in sharing the story of how she struggled to accept herself. Having those conversations with teenagers really helps them to understand what it truly means to be born homosexual. The message that Rosie wants to send to young adults is don’t be afraid, it does get better. Leave it to my Joseph to turn the conversation around from tears to laughter.
Heather and Cliff Robinson were a big hit (or should I say splash)! I first met Heather when Victoria was working on charity fundraising for her high school club. Cliff is a retired NBA star. Heather has worked with various non-profit organizations for years planning and partnering athletes and celebrities to different charities. Together Cliff and Heather have founded The Robinson Network, a non-profit foundation designed to assist other charitable causes. You can find out more about their foundation at www.robinsonnetwork.org. Heather was so helpful in guiding Victoria in the right direction to proceed in her future charitable endeavors.
What a pleasant added bonus it was for me to go from meeting Heather to growing and forming a wonderful friendship with her and Cliff. Heather’s kind heart and loving spirit immediately makes you feel like you’ve been friends for years. I was thrilled when they came to visit us at the shore and fit right in with my friends and family! We all had a fantastically silly time that night. It’s always fun to let your hair down and be a little crazy with the people you love. As you all saw Rosie loves to joke around and Heather and Cliff were such great sports that they all hit it off right away.Marriage is a partnership and a wedding is the glorious celebration of love. How wonderful it is for all of us to be able to see Jaime and Rich celebrate the unity and commitment that marriage stands for. What a beautiful home and setting for their wedding. Love definitely lives there. I can’t wait to see the rest of the wedding next week. This is history in the making folks. Keep it equal. Love is love.
I’m going to leave you all with a quote from an interview that Rosie gave earlier this week.
“Love yourself. Love God. Love others!”
Here’s the link for the full interview.
Please join or donate to Team “Victorious Angels” for the National Brain Tumor Society 2nd Annual walk NYC 6/16.
Red Velvet Cosmo is now available throughout New Jersey, Connecticut, Florida, and wherever spirits are sold. I have many more exciting things coming soon so stay tuned!
Peace and Love,