India Lipton and Shirley Lesser were one of the first same-sex couples married in Virginia after marriage equality became law of land. That marriage happened at New York Deli with local news crews filming. "Yep, the whole state was able to tune in and be part of our wedding," India says.
Shirley was the first gay parent to legally adopt in Virginia. It was marriage that opened the door to the adoption process for their son Dylan. The couple had already planned for conception and were equally his parents from before birth.
These legal hurdles plus medical challenges like their son's 22 brain surgeries have brought the family closer together.
"Family are those you share love with, celebrate with, mourn with and plan with regardless of distance or length of time. Your bond with them is more intimate than with others," India says.
India, Shirley, and Dylan are part of the One Love exhibit at the Valentine. You can see them visiting ARC Park which happens to be one of their favorite Richmond spots.
"We love that Richmond is a great place to raise a family," India says. "You can do nearly anything you want to here if you seek it out."