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Sunday was Mother’s Day, and countless mothers lined up with their families, clutching their restaurant wait-list buzzer thingies that, when activated, startled many of them into an inopportune piddle. Then they waited an untoward amount of time for a mediocre brunch, a watery mimosa, and a flagging carnation. Yet, they remained cheerfully appreciative of the U.S. style of maternal adulation, grateful for the predictable mundanities of motherhood.
But this year, the recent fumble between Vice President Joe Biden, President Barack Obama and their campaign strategists managed to place the administration’s same-sex marriage ball directly onto the civil rights side of the field. In so doing, they brought to mind a special group of mothers who must feel poignantly encouraged to know that their president has declared his support for same-sex marriage: Mothers of same-sex couples.
Fallbrook, like small towns everywhere, is home to some of these mothers, mothers who can now imagine a day, in the no longer so distant future, on which their offspring might don fairy-tale attire, force their family and best buds into ill-fitting tuxedos and gowns, run the gauntlet of endearingly silly speeches and dances and family dramas, and then waddle home with a government-sanctioned certificate validating the union.
I can’t wait to celebrate for them, for the return of a dream these mothers lost to the hate bestowed upon their kids when states and Congress passed anti-same-sex marriage laws.
I can’t wait to celebrate for the mother whose gay son was brutalized as he rightfully insisted on being honest about who he was while a student at Fallbrook High School. Perhaps he will return to town one day soon to share happy engagement news with his mother.
I can’t wait to celebrate for the lesbian mothers who might now be able to envision themselves married as their children come of age.
I can’t wait to celebrate for the mother whose concern that her gay son’s lavender shirt makes him a target for the fearful might soon shift to the consideration of centerpiece color palettes.
I can’t wait to celebrate for the mother whose perfect wedding plans, put on hold not by her daughter’s coming out but by an ignorant electorate, might be revitalized with her daughter’s newly won rights and romance.
That we might celebrate all of this, I can’t wait for the repeal of the federal Defense of Marriage Act, so the president’s — and the mothers’ — position becomes the law of the land. That will be one hell of a Mother’s Day.
Kit-Bacon Gressitt's commentary and political fiction can be read on her blog Excuse Me, I'm Writing and is republished by SDGLN, The Ocean Beach Rag and The Progressive Post. She was nominated for a Pulitzer Prize while working for the North County Times. She is also host of Fallbrook's monthly Writers Read open mic and can be reached at email@example.com.