My Very First Family Week

posted on Thu, Aug 11 2011 10:11 am by rebecca.sniderman@familyequality.org

Having just returned from my first Family Week, I now completely understand why folks often tear up when thinking or talking about past Family Weeks.  It was such a rewarding and meaningful experience getting to meet the families that we serve.

I now have many lasting memories from Family Week.  I think one of the moments that really stuck with me was at the Family Dance on Friday evening, which was one of the cutest things I have ever been to!  One of the girls from my Kidapalooza class, soon to be 8-years-old, Becca, decided that she wanted to dance with me.  Unfortunately, she could not find me on the dance floor since I was outside handing out snacks to families.  She approached many staff on a desperate search for me.  Eventually a staff member came out to find me stating that a little girl was looking for me.  As I approached the entrance to the dance floor, I spotted Becca waiting on the threshold with a big grin plastered across her face.  She demanded, “where were you?!”  She grabbed my hand and dragged me to an open spot on the floor.  We danced together, along with her little sister, for many songs while her mom videotaped the experience.  I could tell that it really meant a lot to her.  It meant a lot to me too.

Our Executive Director asked if I was enjoying myself half-way through the week.  I immediately started telling her stories about all of the parents and children I had met, our conversations about their homes in places ranging from my birthplace of Rhode Island to Texas, and the deep gratitude and joy I felt from each and every individual I had the pleasure of coming in contact with.  I am now convinced more than ever that any person who opposes the creation, maintenance, and rights of LGBT families could not continue to hold that stance after experiencing one day or even one hour in Provincetown during Family Week.  Having served as a day camp counselor in the summers during high school, I did not notice any differences between the families in Provincetown compared to those picking up their kids after work in Rhode Island.  I agree whole heartedly with Family Equality Council’s belief that love makes a family.

By the end of the week, I was overwhelmed with pride and joy when looking back at the hundreds of families marching through the streets during the Parade and while viewing the slideshow of photos.  At these moments, I couldn’t hold back the tears.   Thank you to all of the parents, children, loved ones, staff, and interns who made my first Family Week such an incredible experience.