It all started with a question about the pin I was wearing on my sweater. The organization Believe Out Loud has a logo that is very intriguing, and I've started wearing it in the hopes people will ask me about it. My strategy has proven to work.
It was a find-your-own-seat airline, and I saw a window seat in row 6. I asked the man sitting in the aisle seat if I could pass him to sit down. He stood and apparently saw my pin as I took my seat. Less than five minutes passed before he asked, "I couldn't help but notice your pin. Can you tell me about it?" I told him that Believe Out Loud is an ecumenical group that encourages supportive Christians to speak up as allies in order to drown out the ugly invective being spewed by the religious right. And we were off to the races.
I learned that David is a training executive for a national bank firm and a partnered Jewish man who lives in San Diego and Palm Springs. We talked until we parted ways at the airport—about the harm done by people in the name of religion, about our relationships and those we've lost, and about aging parents. I've never had such a compelling exchange with a stranger on a plane before. He encouraged me and we traded business cards. He offered to fly to Indy to address my church in whatever way might be helpful in our growth toward affirmation.
Our meeting was just the thing I needed after my disappointment in our convention's lack of LGBT support. It is uncanny the doors that open for me as I move along in my journey of advocacy. I can't wait to see what happens next.