How wonderful it must be to speak the language of the angels, with no words for hate and a million words for love! ~Quoted in The Angels' Little Instruction Book by Eileen Elias Freeman, 1994
I thought hard about my contribution to the Blog Hop Against Homophobia. There are so many issues to be addressed. So many important, critical issues.
I'm not a gifted orator, certainly not qualified to voice with the adequacy necessary to express my feelings on the issue of hatred. Bigotry. Intolerance.
So I'm just going to share how the hatred and gender bias hits me where I live. I'm going to introduce you to a real-life angel, a beautiful friend. A guy named Rick.
Rick is gay.
Everytime I hear hateful remarks about gay people, my first reaction is always a very defensive, hackles-raised ire. Because if you're hating homosexuals, you are hating my friend Rick. And I just won't tolerate that.
Rick is a friend of my daughter's and my late son-in-law, Mike. He'd been close friends with Mike's mom before she passed away (when Mike was a teen).
He's always been a wonderful man. I even have a huge crush on him, and he knows it. But when Mike became ill with Stage IV lung cancer, Rick kicked into high gear and literally became a fierce guardian of Mike and my daughter.
Rick came to clean the house when Lyndie was too tired with trips to M.D. Anderson. Rick prepared meals for Lyndie and Mike. Rick tended the dogs when Mike and Lyndie took much needed get-a-ways to the lake. Rick remembered how much Mike loved his childhood aluminum Christmas tree and bought he and Lyndie a beautiful seven-foot replica, complete with ornaments and lights. Rick taxied Mike to and from M.D. Anderson for chemo and radiation when Lyndie was not able to do so. Rick always made sure to bring flowers to Lyndie's work to cheer her up during the illness, to let her know she wasn't forgotten. When Mike was unable to work, Rick visited him at home and kept him company. Rick was always there, at the drop of a hat, anytime Mike or Lyndie needed him.
Mike (left) and Rick
See where I'm going with this? Do you see the angel I see in Rick? Unselfish, loving, gentle, tireless. Angel.
When Mike passed away, it was Rick who completely decorated the memorial chapel. Beautiful flowers, candles, photos. Rick constantly visited Lyndie in those horrible early days, he still does. The beautiful flowers continue to arrive for her. He's still there. He was and still is a friend to my children in every sense of the word, and beyond.
So you see why I might get a little bit angry when I hear homophobic remarks? Why I take very personal offense? Because if you say these horrible, hate-filled things, you say them about this angel on earth. You say them about my Rick.
And, like I said. I won't tolerate it.
Rick and Lyndie
All God's angels come to us disguised. ~James Russell Lowell