When I was in college and was realizing that my queerness was here to stay, I remember watching Rosie’s show every single day. I’d record it when I couldn’t be home. There was such comfort in seeing an openly queer person on tv, being loved. It gave me hope for the future when I desperately needed it.


After I moved back home, went back into the closet, I sometimes went to NYC just to get away. One day I was there and I saw that Rosie was doing a book signing the next day. So I got up super early the next morning and drove back into the city.


We weren’t supposed to give her anything, but I slipped her a letter, which she graciously took. And we snapped this photo.


It’s so vital for queer and trans kids to see adults who are thriving. And they need to see us close up, not just on tv or in the news. These connections are vital and lifesaving.


I’m grateful for all of the queer and trans folks who gave me an example to hope towards. And I strive every day to be that example of hope for others.