Monday, October 24, 2011
To Be Happy Once Again
Well, yesterday was a step into the next phase of my relationship with Abel, and the beginning of my family getting used to seeing me with another man.
It was the occasion of my niece and her husband baptizing their newborn baby boy. I drove up with two of my kids, and a new person at my side. It was not a surprise to them, as I had broken the news of this new relationship with them one week ago. Each of them were surprised to learn that I had been dating, and that I had chosen not to share the news with them for well over a month.
I let my family know that I needed some time to feel secure in being part of a new twosome before having to deal with the looks of confused emotion on their part. My family loved Michael, and they, like me, continue to grieve his absence from their lives.
Abel himself was a nervous wreck. I suppose it's always a big occasion when the new love gets introduced to the extended family members, and he wasn't quite sure how he would be received. He knew that my family had grown used to seeing me either as Michael's husband, or later, as Michael's widower. For the past two years they grew used to seeing me in a continued somber state of mind and emotion.
Once at the house, most of Abel's concerns began to melt away. My brothers and parents were very gracious in introducing themselves to him, and each spent some time getting to know him and wanting him to feel comfortable in their presence. At one point Abel leaned over to me and pointed out that my mother kept glancing our way. I reminded him that this is the first time that she has seen me with another man. It has to be both pleasing and bittersweet. Around this time my mother told me that my decision to move to San Diego has been the best choice I made for myself. She reminded me that I now have "a lovely home, a good job," and looking at Abel, then back at me, she said, "and now you have this."
On the long drive back to San Diego from our day in Thousand Oaks, I received a text from my older brother telling me that his day was great. Among those events that made his day was seeing me happy again. After reading the text to everyone in the car, my kids both chimed in, saying "Abel, we are so happy that you and my dad are dating."
Oh, to be happy once again.