Last week my dearest wife, Steph, flew into town from Toronto with her fiancé Mike. I actually took time off from work as well and played tour guide/host for a few days to save them some money and to maximize my time with my friend. We met online about 6 (or 7?) years ago and then in person 5 years ago when I flew to Toronto and stayed with her. The last time we saw each other though was 3 years ago for my birthday.
This woman is my parallel and is the original wife. I have a select few women in my life to begin with and each one has a very crucial role to play so I value each friendship to the Nth degree. To say that we were bursting at the seams in anticipation of finally meeting up again is a gross understatement.
We had been planning this for months – prior to me even meeting Dean. I was excited about meeting the man who’d stolen my wife away from me and made her so blissfully happy, but then things turned with Dean and suddenly I was dying for her approval of him. Being the awesome guy that he is, he totally agreed to take his day off and spend it schlepping downtown in DC with 2 strangers from another country and his girlfriend knowing he’d be scrutinized the entire time. I think Mike had it even harder though because he was staying in my home and he had to contend with my 3 furballs as well as meet strangers in a strange land. (Okay not really strange land – he’s very familiar with the States.)
So anyway, time was spent with Mike & Steph and Dean & Tovah and it was absolutely great. Watching Mike and Steph together made my heart sing. They are so utterly in love and so absolutely perfect for each other that it reminded me that true love does exist. I could not approve of their pairing any more than I already do. It was natural and sweet and easy.
The next day Dean went to work and the out of towners and I went over to my mom’s for an engagement lunch (they got officially engaged a few days prior to their arrival) and Steph and Mike weighed in on my pairing in front of the mother person. High praise was given and approval was shared. Apparently Dean and I are very natural together and “you wouldn’t know from looking at them they’d only been dating a few months.” Translation: The two pairings were mutually APPROVED!
I had only a few precious days with my friends before sending them back home. I cried about 3 seconds after I got back behind the wheel and dropped them off. I called Dean who comforted me, but I didn’t have much time to mourn the absence of my friend because woosh! Three day weekend with my man magically occurred wherein I had to meet his friends and then dun dun dun he had to meet my parents! Oh my!
Friday all was well… and then we had our first argument. Why is that first disagreement the absolute hardest one to deal with? I will never know, but we survived it and learned a few valuable lessons. As much as I loathe arguing, I’m glad we got that first tiff out of the way early on.
Saturday I was to meet the friends and quickly realized this translated to “get the approval of the women” because instead of four couples watching the UFC fight, the men went off to be manly and watch sports while the hens clucked in the hen house… while drinking. Heavily. It’s widely known that I do not do well with women and prefer the company of men and sports to the hen house. Alas, I was in no position to argue and I figured alcohol would help any situation so I just went in full tilt and let them see the real me. Turns out I had nothing to worry about and ended up having a fucking GREAT time with the girls! I learned all sorts of juicy little tidbits and felt right at home with them. I got the seal of approval from his friends.
At this point, we’re two for two on meeting of the friends and being approved of, but the biggest test is yet to come – meeting my mom.
Sunday was the 4th of July and the initial plan was to have Dean meet my parents in a relaxed environment. We usually go to this local farm that opens up it’s doors to the local yuppies for a huge fireworks display. You can bring your own food, drink, (yes, alcohol is okay), games, seating, etc. and it’s free. They ask for donations at the gate and we always give a few bucks because it’s totally worth it. It’s completely laid back and chilled out. Well plans changed when not only did my stepdad get sick, but I ended up with a flat tire! I was visibly disappointed, mom got frustrated with me, and we beefed briefly and I gave up. Super mega turbo great boyfriend leaped into action though and before I could even get my clothes on (I tend to take a shower when I get frustrated) he was out the door and already in action. By the time I got to the car, he had all but two lug nuts back on the spare tire, which I found out was a full size tire, not a donut so my worry was for nothing. Amazing!
So once order was restored, we headed off to pickup mom with her cooler full of food and her bag of games, and then headed off to our destination. We had 2 hours to kill before fireworks so we socialized and had fun. Mom brought out magnetic darts, bubbles, the camera, and food and we had an absolute blast! Dean was as affectionate in front of me as he is with anyone and didn’t put on a front at all. He was 100% him and I was 100% me. I got the “awwww” look from mom about a dozen times. Then she brought up the beach trip we’re all going on in two months and when she started telling him what we’ll all be doing, I knew instantly she had approved. Three for three, bitches!
Then the real test and final approval moment was at hand.
When it was time for the fireworks to begin, mom set up her tripod and camera at her chair while Dean and I laid out on our sides on the blanket and he kinda half spooned me, half wrapped his arms around me just we do when we’re lying in bed. This allowed for optimum comfort and view of the fireworks exploding right over us, but also allowed for romance. Let me tell you, the romance was so thick in the air you couldn’t even hack through it with a machete. I was completely and totally head over heals prior to that moment, but I looked back at his face at one point and he looked back at me and gave me a kiss. Right then and there I fell in love.
Now I just need to figure out how to tell him that.