Monday, November 16, 2009

I Now Pronounce Thee…, Part 5


Imagine being outed to the girl who wrote you throughout your mission—pushed out of the closet door in but a blink of an eye. A look of terror coming across your face as she looks to see your reaction, pulling away a little asking why didn't you tell me? The pieces pull themselves together in her head—the conversations about the right girl being impossible to find; the intensely deep discussions of literature, theatre, music, and art; the uncanny and undying devotion to sock-shirt color coordination.

Jeannie was the one person aside from my own mother who regularly wrote me on my mission. We were connected on a level I'd never felt with any other girl. We could finish each other's sentences, hold arguments over any number of common interests, and point out minute, unmentionable flaws in each other. In the mission field, I contemplated more than once the idea of coming home and marrying her—the lives that we'd lead, the continued, growing friendship, the intertwining of each and every branch of our life.

These fantasies were spurred by a number of conditions. I was a continent away, reading glory stories of men coming home, getting married, and raising families. I have no idea if her intention was the same as mine, but the poetry we exchanged and the clippings of my favorite comic strip would likely indicate that that's the case.

Needless to say, once I got home from my mission, things did not work out—romantically—between us. We spent more time than ever together. We continued having our late-night discussions, and critique one another's poetry, but something never took. That seed of mutual interests, compatible senses of humor, and everything else never blossomed into a romance. It never even peeked out of the soil.

Upon returning from my mission, things immediately started where we'd left off, but it was only a matter of months before we hit a wall. I was attracted to her in every way but sexually. There was no 'spark' because I didn't even that special feeling, and as a result, we never went on a single date, though the possibility was always implied. One day, when I felt comfortable with it, we were going to go on that first magical date. That date never came, so someone else came along.

As Matt entered her life, we remained friends, but our friendship became more and more dependent on Facebook as we headed in different directions and they started to absorb every free moment in each other's lives as lovers tend to do. Eight months later, they were married in the temple. The reception was beautiful. The wedding colors were white and a very subtle green and Jeannie's bouquet of lilies brought out the often over-looked color in Jeannie's reddish-brown hair. The reception was held a stone's throw away from the bride's house in a town a stone's throw from nowhere.

I arrived at the wedding with Cole and a guest. Although I can't be certain what Jeannie knew or inferred close as we were, that guest was possibly the last piece of the puzzle she needed. I brought Mark. Deep down, I suppose I wanted to show my boyfriend that I wanted to be married someday and that I thought being with him was worth whatever risk bringing him to the wedding entailed. I simply introduced him as a friend who was going on a mission to the northeast soon. (All true). Everyone took it at face value and didn't question why I would bring a random young man to the reception of one of my best friend.

One year later, we all found ourselves at another wedding (with the exception of Mark who was on his mission).

We (and perhaps, at times, Bronson himself) thought the day would never come when he would find his special someone, but then we met Cheryl (a story which deserves a post—nay—a series of its own). They were perfect for each other. Again, it was a beautiful reception in fabulous June weather. Book-ended by two days of rain, it was the perfect temperature. In the bride's back yard, the reception had a cozy feeling. All of my dearest friends sat at the table reminiscing about past weddings and the high school days.

As the wedding came to a close and the line dissipated, one of the bridesmaids flitted over in her lime green and pink dress to join Cole, myself, Matt, Jeannie, and Emily. Liz had heard Cole's infamous laugh and a conversation about the music of Up from across the yard. (We tend to demand that attention in large groups). Every aspect of Liz's personality and appearance contrasted with that of her sister, the bride. While Cheryl, though lovely, initially came off as somewhat awkward and conservative….

Liz's first question for us immediately following our discussion of the visual and narrative significance of the movie Up was:

"So are you two going to PRIDE tomorrow?"

My and Cole's jaws dropped. We had no idea what to say. Gay was by no means tattooed on our foreheads, but why would it be the first question out of her mouth? Dumbstruck, neither I nor Cole could utter a word. The hair on the nape of my neck stuck up and I remembered Jeannie's presence and the fact that as close as we'd gotten to having a conversation about me being gay, it had never actually happened.

I swallowed my fear and opened my mouth, "Yes. Actually, I've been volunteering there the past two days."

"I've been meaning to go with some friends. You know me. I'm a bit of a 'fruit fly.'"

At that, it was immediately revealed to Cole and I had a new friend. We also had confirmation that any hopes that Jeannie and Matt might have had that we were straight were laid to rest next to that dream that what Jeannie and I had might grow into something more.


Anonymous said...

This certainly makes one wonder what the real essence, the real force of a relationship is... if it's everything but sexual, does that by logic make sexual attraction the definition of a real romantic relationship, even considering the absence of the other factors? Maybe this is why gay relationships often feel somewhat superficial, because too frequently they never surpass that sexual attraction to make it to our hearts or intellect. But a thought, GMB.

A Gay Mormon Boy said...

I hesitate boiling love down to a checklist of types of compatibility (i.e., intellectual, sexual, emotional) but the more you connect with a person, the deeper the emotions will run. I agree that the problem with many homosexual relationships is that depth.

Anonymous said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

Popular Posts