Back at Mile High
If there’s one thing I know for sure, it’s that life’s journey can take you to some unexpected places.
For Addison and me, it took us back to the Mile High City, to our beloved Denver!
When we left Denver and returned to South Carolina back in January of 2013, we didn’t expect to come back to Colorado. We were planning to get good jobs, buy a house, and start our own family surrounded by our parents and dear friends who live in the Palmetto State. But you know what they say about the best laid plans.
While we absolutely loved the 18 months we spent at home with so many people we adore, we simply couldn’t turn down the opportunity to go back to Denver.
I have just wrapped up my first three weeks as Director of Communications at the Gill Foundation, based in Denver. Gill Foundation is one of the largest funders of LGBT advocacy work in the country. For years, the organizations I’ve worked for, including One Colorado, Freedom to Marry, and Equality Federation, have relied on the Gill Foundation for generous funding. I’ve come to know many of the key players on the Gill team, and I’ve counted them as friends for years.
When I was given the opportunity to join a team of some of the brightest minds in the LGBT movement, even though it meant throwing our lives into disorder and returning to Denver, I had to say yes. I simply couldn’t turn down the chance to shape how the movement is funded in the coming years. Three weeks in, and I’m still really excited about this new challenge.
[As a side note: It was incredibly sad to leave the Equality Federation — I’ve never loved colleagues as much as I’ve loved all of them. But I’m already finding ways to continue seeing and working with them (they’ll never get away from me!). Yay!]
Our return to Denver wasn’t just about my career. It was also a good—though not uncomplicated—step for us personally.
Addison and I are continuing to pursue our dream of starting a family. In Denver, we have access to a world-renowned fertility center. And we, as an LGBT family, are welcomed and encouraged to adopt children. Two clear paths toward the family we’ve been dreaming about.
As regular blog readers know, our attempts to get pregnant in South Carolina were not successful. In Colorado, we have incredible expertise at our fingertips if we decide to continue pursuing a biological family.
Our attempts to learn more about adoption in South Carolina were also unsuccessful. Our conversations with adoption attorneys in the state revealed the many obstacles we would face adopting as an LGBT family in our home state. In Colorado, LGBT families are actively recruited to provide homes to children who need them.
So while my career was the driving factor in our return to Denver, Addison and I believe it was also the best thing to do for us as a couple.
The most common question I get from people about our move: “But what about your house?” Yes, friends, as you’ll recall, in December of 2013, Addison and I bought and renovated a delightful house. Our decision about what to do with our beloved home was not simple.
We thought about selling it, but after talking with a real estate agent, we learned that we wouldn’t get back the money we invested in it with such a quick turnaround. Instead, we rented it out.
We were exceptionally lucky. We found a wonderfully lovely couple to rent it, and we truly believe they’ll take good care of it. I’m keeping my fingers crossed that they’ll want to stay several years until the timing is right for us to sell.
Naturally, no part of our process of returning to Colorado was easy. Making the decision was hard. Figuring out what to do with our house was hard. Finding a rental house in Denver was hard. Getting ourselves and our dog and our stuff back across the country was hard.
But now that we’re here and settled, looking back, everything seemed to fall into place. Great renters in SC. An awesome place here in Denver. Lots of support from the Gill Foundation to help us return. And, just a few days ago, Addison was offered a job. I’ll let her fill you in on the details, but it’s a job she really wanted, and she’s thrilled about it.
And so we’re back and feeling grateful to be here. All we’re missing is our family and dearest friends (and yes, we miss them every day). But I’m crossing my fingers that they’ll be here to visit soon.