Sunday, March 16, 2008

22 years ago today

My life felt finally on track, but the future was definitely uncertain.

I had lived abroad, gotten married, been divorced, found a new love, taken a loooong time to finish my BA and was about to move from Hawaii to Denver in search of work.

An outsider (or family member) might have blamed much of the upheaval in my life on the fact that I had figured out that I am gay.

Recognizing that about myself at 27 brought me ...

a feeling of peacefulness, of ‘coming home’ as I put it at the time. But it also threw parts of my life into turmoil. My seven-year marriage wasn’t going to survive. Who do I tell? Who do I not? What do I want to do with the rest of my life? What doors have just opened, which ones have just shut?

Would I ever have kids?

Oh sure, Time magazine had just done a huge piece on how gay was the new black and through adoption, artificial insemination, or even the old-fashioned way, everything is possible. But would I ever have kids? And, really, did I want them. In a straight marriage, there is an assumption that, of course, you’re going to have kids sometime… whether you want to or not. But since I was rewriting my script, I got to ask, Do I want kids?

No rush to answer that one. I felt pretty much like most 27-year-old women in the 80s. I had plenty of time.

All that was swirling around me on this morning 22 years ago. My oldest brother and his girlfriend had given birth two days before to their first baby, a boy, the first child in our next generation, my first nephew.

I now have three nephews and three nieces and, no, I didn’t have any kids myself, and I’m still loving that. But 22 years ago today, my brother brought home tiny Andrew.

“Will you call him Andy?”

“Dunno, have to see…. here hold him.”

“Really? .. uh, ok.”

He was 2 days old. Really tiny. Very calm. And, as I sat with him nestled in my arm, drinking a small bottle of water, his dark eyes locked on mine. He pulled me into his calm.

Our little world was at peace. We were family. It was a perfect moment. Happy Birthday, Andrew.

Robin, Tempe, Arizona

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