A Love Note from the Tour

We welcome our guest blogger, Sunshine West, who will give us a behind the scenes look at one person’s experience with the Free Mom Hugs Don’t Hide Your Pride Tour.

The Free Mom Hugs family gathered in Knoxville, TN today in a queer owned coffee shop full of pop culture memorabilia and rainbows. I didn’t consider that there may be protesters outside, but when I walked up to the door there were two young men sitting by the entrance, bibles open. Before I could decide how to feel about their presence, I noticed a mom talking to the boys, and in the next moment another mom was welcoming me with rainbow stickers and pronoun pins. The next thing I know, I’m in line to buy a lemonade from a nice queer lady. I didn’t know anyone at the event so I decided to sit with someone new. I ended up meeting Allison, who was at her first Free Mom Hugs event. We had a great time getting to know one another. 

Don’t Hide Your Pride Tour Stop, Knoxville, TN.

Sara told her story and then a couple other people talked about their community, and next was told the best engagement story I’ve ever heard. It all felt like a family reunion where I was meeting a bunch of distant cousins. Mundane and simple, yet the air was flecked with gold, and time stood still as we all laughed and celebrated our community together. 

Sara speaking at South Press Coffee House in Knoxville, TN.


Here, I don’t have to defend my existence. 

Here, I don’t have to hide any part of me. 

Here, I feel safe to be myself. 

Here, I feel valued and loved for who I am. 

Sunshine West