Still Learning To See

Inspired by love

Orlando. Another code word full of all the meaning that more than fifty lives—and hundreds of friends and family members and hundreds of thousands of LGBTQ+—can infuse. Honestly I have not known what to say, and the mistake I’ve made has been to say little or nothing.

There has been and will be much more analysis, political maneuvering and defending the right to bear arms and which ones to ban and on and on. There will be more murders by crazy people using all too powerful weapons. And there will be young kids (and people of all ages) who will be even more afraid to come out for fear of all this insanity.

It was not “Muslim terrorism,” but rather testosterone-fueled homophobia enabled and emboldened by NRA-hype and lack of mental health services. We are all a bit crazy and we all need a little help at times!

Jack appears in this family portrait as a cardboard cutout of himself because he could not attend in person.

Jack appears in this family portrait as a cardboard cutout of himself because he could not attend in person.

Two weeks ago we shared in an amazing wedding of my two sisters-in-law. They’d been together for thirty years and eight children and could never be legally married simply because they are two women.

And in those years there was so much more I will never know about because I don’t have to be afraid to kiss my wife in public or walk down the street holding hands. I did not have to spend tens of thousands of dollars in legal fees to make sure my wife and I could both make decisions about our kids if, for instance, they ended up in the hospital or somehow I needed to prove I really was their parent. I never had to worry about whether I’d lose my job because of how I was born. On and on and on there are ways I’ll never know what it is like to live every day being LGBTQ+ in this culture of ours.

jrs-01224But the point is they were finally married in a glorious celebration of who they are  surrounded by people who know them and love them. A rainbow of people, the full spectrum of life. My 96-1/2-year-old father-in-law led then down the aisle—one on each arm, supporting him. He’d given them his wedding ring which they had made into two rings saying “better to give this new life than bury it with me.” Another remarkable and courageous sister-in-law officiated the wedding welcoming all, overflowing with love. So many smiles and so much love, all simply because we share this amazing life with these two women.

jrs-01210

There are, and always will be, many terrifying  things in life, nearly all related to our fellow humans. And there is so much more about life to celebrate. But we need the courage to do so and we can find that courage and inspiration in each other. I so appreciate that friends have suggested this week that I find someone to hug and then speak out for life in whatever way possible. Thank you for taking time to share in these thoughts, inspired by my brave, loving family.

This entry was published on June 16, 2016 at 8:29 am. It’s filed under John Snell, John Snell Photographer, People, Uncategorized and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Follow any comments here with the RSS feed for this post.

3 thoughts on “Inspired by love

  1. kspring on said:

    Thanks for sharing this, John. Thanks for celebrating the love and beauty of your family and all of us

  2. You know too given the family you have! And glad to be part of your greater family too. Hugs

  3. Marg Pifer on said:

    Dear John, You have spoken eloquently and truthfully, and I thank you for your wisdom and caring. We have much to learn from one another whatever our color or stripe. Peace to you, and love, Marg

    On Thu, Jun 16, 2016 at 8:29 AM, Still Learning To See wrote:

    > John Snell posted: “Orlando. Another code word full of all the meaning > that more than fifty lives—and hundreds of friends and family members and > hundreds of thousands of LGBTQ+—can infuse. Honestly I have not known what > to say, and the mistake I’ve made has been to say littl” >

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: