Every year for over 30 years, a few special girlfriends that I have known since middle school have been getting together at Christmas to have dinner, share news for the year and appreciate the times of friendship that have weathered the passing of loved ones and celebrated joys within our families. Three of these ladies stood at my side when I spoke my wedding vows. And I stood by theirs as well. We have attended funerals of parents and even one spouse. We have celebrated the birth of our children and now the birth of grandchildren. Our history together is something that we treasure and appreciate more and more each year.
The gifts these four ladies have given me over the years have been many, but the most memorable took place exactly three years ago this month at our annual Christmas dinner. It was there that Aiden chose to pass out his letter announcing that he would be transitioning to male the following year. As Aunties Janice, Jeanne, Judy and Susie read the letters, Aiden and I waited anxiously wondering how they would respond. Would times be awkward now with this news? Would they be able to understand how important this transition was to my son? Softly and individually, each in their own way shared their love and support for the journey that Aiden and our family would be taking.
There is no gift that these four ladies could ever give me that will match the gift that I received that night. Thank you Janice, Jeanne, Judy and Susie for opening up your hearts and telling my son that no matter who he was on the outside, he would always be loved for who he was in the inside.