by Aimee Genter-Gilmore, PQ Monthly
Well, Oscar Rocket has hit about 239 developmental milestones since I last wrote. Here they are, in no particular order:
- Spinning in a circle on his belly
- Crawling backward
- Crawling forward
- Crawling forward at warp speed
- Pulling himself up to standing
- Not knowing how to sit down from standing and hitting his head
- Recovering quickly from painful lessons
- Separation anxiety
- Crying when you take anything away from him (including thumb tacks, “kitty tumbleweeds,” and remote controls)
- …and I think I might have heard him say “mama” during one of his separation anxiety episodes when I left the room.
Today he had his nine-month checkup, and as always, he’s a happy, healthy, baby boy (although he has consistently come in at the “stringbean” body type in comparison to other babies, which makes Nattie G and I laugh, because her family tree has very few “stringbeans” in it).
So we’re transitioning. From baby to “wobbler” (and soon enough, toddler). This means a mental transition for us, as we stop treating him like an infant and encourage him to explore his world. And exploring is something he absolutely loves to do, and it’s so fun to watch. I never get anything done anymore. I just sit and watch him. He’s better than TV, anyway.
So as he transitions, I thought it would be a nice time to give this blog a little transition. Instead of me talking about how cute my baby is, I’m going to invite other queer parents to meet up and have conversations about their points-of-view when it comes to parenting.
For me, the most surprising thing about being a queer parent is that I had falsely assumed (maybe I’ve been watching a little too much What Would You Do?) that people would give us the stinkeye for our “alternative family. There’s no way to hide my gayness. I stick out like a sore dyke. So I was prepared for the stinkeye, and rude comments, and what I have come to find is that being a queer family out and about, people who may not necessarily agree with us still have something to relate to. See, Oscar Rocket is a big flirt, and he loves to flirt without prejudice. In turn, I have had countless conversations about being a parent with all sorts of people I’d assume would give me the stinkeye. Apparently having a baby makes us more approachable. We’ll see if this changes, but for now, it’s really encouraging.
So please, if you’re interested with contributing to this blog, hit me up on email. I’d love to talk about where you’re coming from, because if there’s anything I’ve learned over the past 9 months, it’s that there are an unlimited amount of definitions of the word “family,” and I’d love to talk about as many as I can.