love, family, understanding, exposure, acceptance
Tara: What do you think it was, your mom was a devout Catholic, had grown up in an institution that um, was you know, still struggling with LGBTQ acceptance, what do you think made the difference for her? How could she be.. what helped her be so embracing of your family? Of you and then your family?
Mary: Well I mean, my first impulse was to say unconditional love for me.
Mary: Because it was.
Mary: And uh, there would be very little that I could imagine being or doing that would cause my parents not to, not to love me.
Mary: So I think that was an important part. I think, you know, my mom expressed to me at the time that, you know she was a very good athlete and she was involved in a lot of sports. I get emotional when I talk about my mom.
Mary: She’s been gone for 16 years, and it’s like wow yesterday that it feels like.
Tara: Huge loss.
Mary: Um, but yeah she was very athletic. She played softball and she did competitive speed skating and all of those bowling and that kind of thing. And so you know, after you know, talking about it, she was like “well, it’s not like it’s the first time I’ve heard of this.”
Mary: And I’m like “wow really? I had no idea.” And then she described all these women that I had known all my life, and you know, just had never put the pieces together.
Mary: “Oh you remember LL? They’ve been together for like 45 years.” And I’m like “really?” So I think you know, in that way that uh, that women find their communities, and that my mom was in that athletic world, and that’s where she found a lot of, of, of people that she met, and she got to know, and maybe they never talked about their relationships in the way that we would today if we were having a conversation. But there was an understanding, and uh, I think she was a good person and she looked at who the people are--
Mary: --rather than what the label is, or whatever.