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EPISODE 78:WHEN YOUR LGBTQIA+ LOVED ONE FACES NON-AFFIRMING FOLKS DURING THE HOLIDAYS

DISCOVER CHRYSALIS MAMA

Transforming the Conversation

Hi, my name is Heather Hester. Welcome to Chrysalis Mama.

You have probably landed on this page because your child or a loved one (grandchild? niece? friend?) has recently come out as lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, or another sexual orientation or gender identity and you are looking for resources and tools. I know the joys and challenges of parenting an LGBTQ child.

Or, maybe you’re here because your company or organization is looking for Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) speakers or consulting. I can help you with that!

Don’t panic. Take a deep breath. You are in the right place. I’ve been where you are. I’ve felt the shock, the joy, the terror, the growth, the unconditional love, the fierce mama bear response. It’s A LOT! And, it can be challenging to find support, guidance, resources, and education. That’s why I’m here.

Chrysalis Mama is the product of our family’s journey with depression, anxiety, and embracing our son, who, among many wonderful traits, is gay. It is my desire to pass on valuable information and offer support to those who are on a similar journey of loving and raising an LGBTQ+ child.

My mission is to transform the conversation around embracing, education, empowering, and loving LGBTQIA+ adolescents, teenagers, and young adults.

You may be asking – how do we change this conversation? I believe it starts within each one of us, blossoms within our families, and then grows within our communities and beyond. My principles are simple yet effective – To embrace, educate, empower, and love.

I am grateful for this opportunity to connect with parents, allies, advocates, and all who are, among all of their many wonderful traits, LGBTQ!

Nestled in this site you will find:

PODCAST

Do you have a child, teen, or young adult who identifies as lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, or another sexual orientation or gender identity?

Do you feel alone in your effort to support them on their journey or navigate your own?

Do you want to learn how to make your work environment more inclusive and well-informed?

Using a combination of solo episodes on in-depth topics and interviews with fascinating guests. Just Breathe: Parenting Your LGBTQ+ Teen helps calm you, educate you, inspire you, and support you on this beautifully unpredictable journey.

BLOG

Covering topics ranging from the LGBTQ+ coming out process to mental health to improving diversity, equity, and inclusion in corporate spaces - the Chrysalis Mama blog is a space to learn, grow, and become empowered.

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Trans Positive Short Film PACEMAKER | Trans Awareness | Chrysalis Mama

November 22, 20232 min read

Trans-Positive Short Film PACEMAKER

Trans positive animation

Pacemaker, a trans-positive animated musical short film, is scheduled for release on digital platforms on November 14, coinciding with Transgender Awareness Week. The poignant and impactful film is now available on Vimeo and YouTube.

Pacemaker stars Alex Newell, the 2023 Tony Award winner for "Shucked,"  the first non-binary actor to win a Tony Award, and Philip Lawrence, a multi-Grammy Award winner. The film tells a heartwarming story of a grandfather's journey toward acceptance of his trans grandson.

Composer Christopher Lennertz wrote the original song that threads the narrative and authored the screenplay. His inspiration derives from his personal experience with his trans son, who also provided valuable consultation on the film's storyline. Brian Vincent Rhodes (Spies in Disguise) shares the co-director's seat with Lennertz.

Pacemaker is executive produced by ND Stevenson, the creator and writer of Nimona. Animation veterans Darlene Caamaño Loquet (Fox, Nickelodeon) and Magdiela Hermida Duhamel (Pixar) produced the film alongside Alex Bedford and Ben Parkin from A Running Commentary, or A.R.C, in London. Vincent Rhodes also served as the Story Artist on the film.

The film has garnered accolades from the Stamped Film Festival, LGBTQ+ Toronto Film Festival, Indie Short Fest, and IndieX Film Fest. The film's original song, "Rhythm Of My Heart," composed by Lennertz and performed by Alex Newell and Philip Lawrence, recently received a nomination for Best Song in a Short Film from the Hollywood Music In Media Awards.

Lennertz shared his thoughts on the film, stating, "This film is a love letter to my own family's journey towards understanding and accepting the identities and purposes of all individuals. Inspired by my son Tobi and our shared love for classic animated musicals, we set out to create a film that captures the essence of beloved classics but delivers a fresh message of love and pride for families within the LGBTQIA+ community and the world. Love emerges victorious when we follow the rhythm of our hearts."

Pacemaker Trailer: here

Original Song: “Rhythm Of My Heart”: here 

YouTube here

Vimeo here

For further information or media inquiries, please contact:

Stacey@rtb-media.com

Heather Hester

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WHAT PEOPLE ARE SAYING ABOUT HEATHER

Heather was a passionate and informed speaker on the topic of LGBTQ2S parenting. Heather shares her personal and professional experience through family storytelling and is able to connect to the audience in this candid way. Heather provided thoughtful and supportive feedback to parents’ questions and employees shared positive feedback after her informative session.

~Kallie Jackson, CN PRIDE ERG Co-Chair

Canadian National Railways

I am very happy to know that Heather is available to serve as a resource for parents of LGBTQ+ kids, and really to any parents at all. Everyone talks about being "inclusive", but Heather lives it. Heather is able to accept whatever comes her way and use the power of unconditional love and kindness to turn challenges into gifts. We can all learn a lot from Heather.

~Adam Simon, Executive Director

Odyssey Teen Camp

Heather was the calming voice in a world that was otherwise in upheaval. Heather was there to pick me up (although she didn't know it) and she was the best friend in my head helping me process and get through some difficult stuff. I loved that she gave ME permission to process and mourn my story now that it was being rewritten...Heather gave me the time I needed to get to the next step. Heather didn't judge me. I would download a podcast every morning and listen to ther during my walk. Her voice fixed it for me. Her voice soothed my heartache. Her voice helped me get to the next step of processing and her voice helped me move on. Heather helped me have difficult conversations that were based in kindness. She helped me to breathe. And I love her for that.

~Anonymous and thankful

I was searching for resources to be the best supportive mom I could be to my pre-teen (now teen) and found this amazing podcast! It was just what I needed! I knew I needed some guidance from a parent who had experience through a similar journey and Heather was there with perfect content and even talked with me personally through email. The community Heather has built through this podcast and Facebook page has given me the confidence to not be fearful through this journey but rather to embrace it and encourage my teen to be their authentic self!

~ Lauren Bo21

Heather is real, relatable, thoughtful, educated, and inclusive of every teen parent scenario in her talks. I love being able to hear first hand from someone who has gone through the “Valley of Darkness” and come out the other side a better person, informed, and able to help others right where they are.

~ MrsWeiselNMS

Your centered, calming voice and demeanor help me to feel more peaceful. I experience you as therapeutic & your journey gives me more hope that we can love [our son] well. Thank you for giving your life away to me through sharing your story and the guests you interview.

~ Anonymous

I love your raw, real vulnerability. I am brand new on this journey and stumbled accidentally across your podcast on a road trip. I listened for 8 hours of driving and didn’t want to get to my destination because I wanted more. Using your own journey to help and support other parents is so brave and I am grateful to you and your family. Connor is so fortunate to have you ❤️

~ Anonymous

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