When Julie Hindsley, 33, and her husband Daniel, 37, from Texas, USA, discovered they were expecting a boy, they threw a big gender reveal party with blue balloons and blue cake.
Julie said: “For our first gender reveal, we had all of our closest friends and family come together at a local restaurant that I worked at at the time. We had a cake pop stand and we bit into the cake pops to reveal the gender – it was bright blue inside.”
But six years later, the couple realized that their declaration that they were having a boy was wrong. Their baby Easton grew up and was completely different to their eldest son, Grant, now 11. He loved playing dress up in Julie’s clothes and make up.
Eventually, Easton had come out as trans and told Julie: “I want to be a girl! Just make me a girl!”
Julie was shocked, and it took a while for her family to accept that Easton was transgender.
“That phrase will be etched permanently into my memory for the rest of my life. The vision of my child throwing her fists down in anger and frustration as we were about to get into the shower can never be erased. That was the moment when I knew I had a transgender daughter and our lives as we knew them were about to change. I could feel the air suck right out of me after she said it, I could not breathe. I am sure she noticed the fear and shock in my face as I stood there silently just staring back at her not knowing what to say,” Julia said.
After several sessions with their councillor, Julie and Daniel decided that it was best for Ella to transition as soon as possible. To honor their child, who now known as Ella, the family has decided to host a second gender reveal party for Ella to celebrate her true gender and reveal her to the world.
“When we decided to do a new gender reveal for Ella, I wanted to highlight how big of a role my husband has played in her transition, and I also wanted to highlight the grieving process that comes along with being a transgender parent. If you love your child unconditionally, then accepting your child for who they are is never a choice, it is just something you do. That does not mean it is always easy, though. This journey has been anything but easy. I am often praised for accepting and loving my child, but behind the scenes, I am filled with anxiety and fear most of the time and I continue to grieve the easier path I had predestined for her. This continues to get easier as we continue to grow support from those around us and watch her fully blossom.”
Julie says Ella is so much happier since being able to live authentically. “Now, I would recommend waiting until a child is born, and a couple of years old, before having a gender reveal or be prepared that it might change,’ the mum advises other parents. We were in denial for a long time about it until we finally learnt how to let go of our son and accept our daughter.”
“I hope they can push their preconceived notions aside and recognize my child is not some mistake like many have made her out to believe. I hope they can see she is now living her best life and would want the same for every one of them, and I hope we can gain more allies. At the very least, I hope I can help at least one other parent struggling with the decision on how to move forward with their gender-nonconforming child who insists their identity does not align with the sex they were born as.”
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