The next piece of our Born this way series is by Cinti. Read the others' stories as well and find the series summary HERE.
Our page concept was inspired in LGBTQ+ solidarity by BornThisWayBlog.com
Cinti (2 months old), (1991)
In this photo I’m 2 months old, which I know from the inscription on the picture’s back, along with the fact that it was taken by my grandmother, because she spelled my name wrong. I was born in a bigger village, in the winter of 1991, and during her pregnancy my mother was reading a romantic little book, in which the heroine was called Cintia. That’s how I got this name, which at the time and place counted as very unusual. When I was born my granny carried the news around the street, telling everyone her granddaughter was born. ‘What’s her name’ the neighbours asked, and she pulled out the slip of paper she wrote it up on, because she couldn’t remember it.
In the picture I’m looking at one of our dogs who’s sitting beside me on the bed, with a mix of fear and awe. Before me there were no children in the family, but there have been a lot of animals, mostly dogs. According to my mother, when I was first given to her in the hospital the first thing out of her mouth was ‘Master’s here’ because it came more naturally than saying ‘mother’ and then looked around sheepishly to see if anyone heard it. She was 21 then.
The love for animals never lessened in our family, there were times when we had 12 dogs at once, along with cats, rabbits, poultry, hamsters, turtles, fish, so a lot of animals. With time my mother got the hang of motherhood as well as being a dog owner: she raised five children, started to work at a school, and she watched over children at home in her free time, so the house was always full. I remember my years spent at home as being surrounded by a crowd of animals and children.
I think this is why I learned very early on that we are all different, that we all have different needs and carry different baggage, but we are still the parts of a community. My family never cared where the children my mother took care of came from. She always said ‘children are just children’, and this is something I remember fondly.
This story has nothing to do with me being a lesbian, really. Suffice to say, my grandma’s forgetfulness makes a return as a plot point: I came out to her about five times, because she kept forgetting it. Luckily she reacted just as positively every time.
In such an environment, it wasn’t hard for me to come out. My family always accepted and supported me, but I know it’s not so easy for everyone, this is why with time I started to volunteer with LGBTQ organisations.
This worldview, this acceptance and respect of diversity and the joy of belonging to a community is what I want to pass down to my children. My partner (my wife since this summer) was a mother when we met, her child is one of the most adorable creatures in the world, and, as we are planning, should be getting a sibling in the future, because in my experience siblings are very important. Just like the knowledge that families come in all shapes and forms. No matter what they say, to me it’s not having one father and one mother that defines a family, but the love and support we have for and the fact that we always look out for each other.
Translated by Zsófia Ziaja