2. She explained to BuzzFeed in her own words:
Over that time I dated, fell in love, fell out of love, had my heart broken and recovered. I graduated from college, gained a brother-in-law, made new friends, and lost a few old ones. I matured. I realized what truly is important in life and began to appreciate more deeply. I finally accepted myself. But even with all of this enlightenment, one thing remained the same. I couldn’t seem to find the right words or perfect timing to tell those in my life the one secret I’d been hiding: that I was a lesbian.
4. They are also fiercely and unshakably loyal — something Kelly was reminded of a week before Thanksgiving in 2013, when her aunt (pictured below) unexpectedly passed away.
The outpouring of love, support, and homemade meatballs was incredible. It was at that time, with the uncertainty of life and the outpouring of love so blatantly before my eyes, that I realized I wasn’t giving my family and friends enough credit. I was suddenly certain that their love for me far outweighed any prejudices they may possess.
6. She set a plan in motion to come out to her entire family on Christmas Eve.
8. She recorded the entire planning process all the way up to the reveal — as well as a bit of amazing lip-synching to “Brave” by Sara Bareilles.
15. Tears, hugs, and then even more hugs for everyone involved.
16. Kelly says it was both “terrifying and amazing.”
17. She was most concerned about the reaction of her elderly grandfather. “I shouldn’t have been.” He said, “Kell, I couldn’t love you any less if tried.”
18. Her aunt’s passing made Kelly realize life is “too short to be anything but your authentic self.”
19. Shortly after coming out, Kelly welcomed a new niece into the world. She received a shirt on Christmas Eve too, which is proudly displayed on her nursery wall.
20. Watch the entire surprise here:
- Tom Perez has been named chair of the Democratic National Committee. He was Obama's Labor Secretary.