Conveniently Unconscious

Posted: 10th November 2013 by admin in Blog
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Less than a month ago, in the midst of planning for my agency’s gala, I reached out to a youth who had attended the previous year to see if she’d be able to join us again.

Less than a month ago, she responded that she and her mom would be thrilled to attend.

Three weeks ago, I was at the registration table on the night of the event when that youth and her mom appeared, ready to sign in to enjoy the evening. We spoke in the hallway, them grateful for the invitation, me grateful that they’d make the long trip from home through Friday traffic and construction to spend this evening with us.

Two weeks ago, the mom contacted me through Facebook, leaving me a wonderful thank you note about being there that night, expressing her desire to get more involved but explaining her time commitments. She went on to talk about the changes she was noticing at the school where she teaches and on the college campus in relation to LGBT issues, particularly around people’s growing comfort to be seen as who they really are.

Two weeks ago, I wrote back to her, first thanking her for her note and then talking about future possibilities for how our work, our mutual vision, might cross paths in the future, no matter if she was officially a part of Youth Outlook’s volunteer pool or not. It was a exchange of hope, of brightness, of plans, of a commitment to something about which we share a passion, for her child, and for LGBT kids in our community.

Yesterday, I received a note from a colleague who thought I might want to know.

Yesterday, the mom who sent such a beautiful, inspiring note died. 

Today, I sit with this information, contemplating such chaos and the loss of such a strong ally on her child’s life. I marvel at the timeframe of having spoken to her, a healthy, able-bodied person, just three weeks ago. I picture her child standing at a hospital bedside just across town and think about their opportunity to say goodbye. And I marvel at how we move through our days deliberately unconscious of the fact that this might be the last time we speak, or the last message we exchange with the people who mean so much to us.

Today, it’s glaring, this question. If we did know, how would we love?


  1. susan francis says:

    My heart was joyful- my heart ached Love love live live. Thank you Nancs I LOVE U ❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️

    Sent from my iPhone


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