Ode to Son
Our relationship began in February, 1979, but in all actuality, I had been dreaming about this man for many years. He would be tall – say six feet six inches; no, he would be of average height, five feet, eleven inches. His hair was straight and dark. No, he had flowing blonde locks. My vision of him changed through the years, but one thing I did know – when we met, he would be everything I had ever wanted, and more.
We began communicating nine months before we spoke face to face. Our initial introduction was exciting, exhilarating, and I knew our relationship would be one that could last a lifetime, if I was patient. So I learned the fine art of patience. This is not to say there weren’t anxious moments. Some days I heard nothing from him, not even a peep. Other days he would not leave me alone, making sure I was always aware he was in my life. We shared our dreams, our hopes, our fears, our plans for the future, and we began planning a life together.
I commenced gathering items I knew he would love: plants – he was a lover of all things green; books – he was a voracious reader, and his appetite was for history and people; food – I knew he hated broccoli and cauliflower, but he loved salads, pastas, and garlic. I began making a list of all I wanted to tell him. I pictured long days in front of a warm fire holding each other and talking about our childhoods. I would teach him the first game I remembered learning – “button, button, who’s got the button,” and pray he would never ask me the first swear word I used and the discipline I received when my mother overheard me calling my neighbor that awful word. We would laugh as we discussed where fire came from and how many stories the logs were telling as they kept us warm.
This communicating and gathering occupied most of my waking, and toward the end, sleeping moments. But, with all the dreaming came worrying. Would I be all he wanted me to be? Had I misrepresented myself to him, and would he be disappointed in my face, my cooking, my decorating, my style? I knew he could love me unconditionally, but would he really do that? I never once wondered if I could give him all of my love, but I did wonder if it would be enough to sustain a long-term relationship.
On October 15, 1980, I knew his arrival was imminent. I cleaned the house, stocked the refrigerator, made sure all outside contacts and errands had been taken care of. I didn’t want anything to interfere with our first few days together. The outside world could wait. He said he would be at my disposal beginning November 2nd. By Halloween evening all was in place. If he were to knock on the door, dressed as a pirate, I would recognize him and be prepared to share my life with him. I spent Halloween evening watching “Arsenic and Old Lace,” but this movie was only a bandage – the anticipation far outweighed any distraction the movie provided. I knew, I knew he was on his way.
November 1st, I could feel it in my bones, today was the day. By noon I could wait no longer; where was he? I was fearful – would he stand me up? After nine months, was he even real? Was this all an apparition?
No, No, Yes, Yes, he was real – I can see the back of his head – dark hair, his shoulders, his body, his legs. Turn, please, let me see your face, are you who I think you are? And with this request, he turned to face me. All my hopes, dreams, fears, joys, and sorrows became reality. There, in my arms, was the man I had conjured for nine months. Our eyes met; I dove quickly and deeply into those pools of blue; regardless of what our future held, he was mine.
Happy Birthday Tyler - you are the man I always knew you would be. I love you -