Duxbury, October, 1997
I spent the first 34 years of my life thinking that life was something that you just settled for and that moments of fun were the things that got you through all the rest of the middling.
When I was with my family, I had to be one person, and when I was with the man that I had spent nine years, eleven months and two weeks of my life with, I was someone else. But even when I was with him, I was never fully with him. He said that he couldn't totally commit, and it made me feel like the other man in our relationship. My shrink summed it up by saying that we were "alone, together" and that I had found a guy who never really accepted himself. Well, I woke up one morning, as we approached a milestone anniversary, and smelled the proverbial coffee. I summed it up by saying I couldn't celebrate a milestone anniversary of ten years when I had very little to celebrate, and I left him.
Then, fifteen years ago this month I reconnected with my friend E from college - who I hadn't seen for 15 years. E was newly "out" and that was exciting. In college everyone wanted to be with E, me especially. So I contacted him, I invited him to my house for dinner, and I fell hard for him, and he for me. We've been together ever since, our lives are fully entwined. He's my best friend, he knows everything about me, and just as I let him be him, he lets me be me. We finish each others sentences and when either of us loses ability to find the exact word on the tip of the tongue, the knows what it is and answers it back. Together, we have been in propinquity for 15 years.
Some people never find what we have, or grow entwined while together. If I had to go through everything that I went through in life to get to the point where I could love myself enough to love him like he deserves, then I have a life with no reservations, no second thoughts. no regrets. Everything before him was well worth the price I paid during those first 34 years, it was well worth the wait. My real life began on May 15, 1997.