STORIES OF STRANGERS ON THE TRAIN: THE CHRISTIAN AND HIS GAY DAUGHTER
By Lauren Modery
I can’t remember how our conversation started, but we talked from 8AM to 10:15AM. He was 60 years old, a truck driver. His daughter bought him his first smartphone, and he asked me if I could download a few apps for him. I was surprised how relaxed he was giving me his phone and personal information, but the train has a way of making you feel comfortable. I find myself sharing stories of my own life to strangers.
While I was downloading the apps, he began talking about his daughter who gifted him the phone. His face lit up when he spoke of her. “She’s an artist, a poet, a rapper. She’s cool,” he said. Many years went by where they didn’t see one another, and when he saw her again, he noticed that she had a very beautiful “female friend” with her. “You know, my daughter likes members of her own sex,” he told me. He mentioned God once or twice in our conversation, so I wasn’t sure where the conversation was headed. “She was afraid to tell me that she liked women,” he said. “Everyone in the family knew but me.”
His ex-wife encouraged his daughter to come visit and tell her dad in person. They went for a walk and she asked him, “Daddy, how do you feel about people who like people of the same sex?” He told me that it hadn’t yet dawned on him what she was trying to say. “I like women,” she said. He told me that he turned to her and said, “Baby girl, I love you for who you are.”
He raised his hand in the air, entwined his forefinger with his middle finger and said, “She and I are like this now.”
He asked me to look her up on Facebook to see her photo, and I could tell that this God-fearing man was so proud of his gay daughter.