In summer 2014 Barilla launched a contest calling for content creators to submit work under 60 seconds that reflected their new diversity campaign. I felt strongly compelled to create a commercial testing their commitment to a more inclusive ad campaign. In fact, my submission was the only one that confronted them face-to-face with a gay family.
"No quere ... dormir," mumbles Olivia as her breathing deepens and her eyes finally stay shut. She means "no quiero dormir," "I don't want to sleep" in Spanish, but her conjugations haven't quite come in yet. I don't care. It's been an hour and a half, she's finally asleep in any language, and I tiptoe out.
I was orphaned when my mother Millie died nine years ago. My biological mother went back to being a Jehovah's Witness and now says she regrets being with Millie for 20-some-odd years. "Les di un mal ejemplo," she says. That's B.S. See, Millie is the one who loved me -- tender, unconditional, I-believe-in-you love.
I live in Alabama, and as most people know the south can be a very conservative place. Aside from God's love, my family is the principal source of my happiness. Like many of the SEALs I have worked with, I am willing to fight and die to protect that. Unfortunately, this state does not recognize my family, a fact that is beyond disheartening.