LGBTQ community, hockey, Ten Oaks Camp, parenting, adoption, ADHD, family focus, support, special needs, identity
Tara: Lots of families, both in Toronto and in Ottawa are involved in activities in the community with other queer families. Is that something that you’ve been doing as well?
Shelby: We have not. And mostly, just because it’s time, and schedule, and sense of urgency for the kids. So while we have some friends where they have kids as well, and make a point of bringing them together, it’s very much a bilateral basis with these particular families. And we have, I would say, we’ve been kind of non-joiners in that larger community sense. And there I think we’ve kind of traded off what’s close to home vs. what’s not. And so as an example, you know both kids are in hockey right now. Our daughter is in the Ottawa Girl’s Hockey Association league, our guy is in the Ottawa East one. You know, between them there’s five or six times a week we’re out at hockey rinks. But what’s great about both those leagues is all the rinks are close to home, so it’s not so bad. You know we’ve tried to stay being a one car family, so we’re trading that off. So it’s been, it’s been that. There is a Ten-Oaks Camp in the Ottawa area. And we’ve considered whether or not we’d have the kids go there at some point, and it hasn’t, it hasn’t emerged as kind of a priority for us. And the one thing that I wanna say, so our son, my partner carried him as a biological child, and we were actually unable to get pregnant again a second time, and some time went by. And then we said you know, we should adopt a child, which is what we did. And our daughter came to us at 11 months, from the local area. And she’s someone that has been diagnosed with a pretty profound level of ADHD. And I’d say our family focus, you know, rather than you know, looking at our identity as being say, a queer couple, and what are the kind of experiences that our kids may have around that, they’ve been having such a smooth sailing time. Our family focus has been dealing on supporting our daughter. And so I would say that whether it’s this Mud Monsters thing that we do Sunday afternoons where she gets to tromp through the woods for hours, or making sure that we have special reading supports for her, or just finding ways to support her and some of the needs that she has, has been more the narrative in our family than our identity as a queer family.