and realized I had not been here at all since last Friday. I had been here just one week ago today, to gather a few clothes and what-nots. The importance of coming back simply never arose all week. Now, I'm back to gather up even more. Actually, I've come to get everything.
Ever since my days of coming-out, I've witnessed the birth of many 'instant relationships'. I've also been witness to many of them crash and burn. Of course, I always thought that people who seemed to rush into an espoused situation were lacking better sense. Perhaps that is quite accurate in many cases, but after what I've been witness and participant in over the last few weeks, I'm more inclined to say that in some cases...it does work. In some cases...it does make sense.
All of my immediate friends know of the dating disasters I've encountered over the last several years. The Ellen movie "Mr. Wrong" always comes to mind when thinking about my dating experiences. What amazed me though, is that I encountered SO MANY Mr. Wrongs before I met Mr. Right. I have to admit that those experiences did make me a stronger person, and helped me to define exactly what qualities I was looking for in a potential life partner. I was beginning to think that 'this man' didn't exist in the real world. To even imagine that he existed in the gay world was even more laughable to me. I was wrong. Man, was I ever wrong.
When I was convinced I would likely spend the rest of my days alone, Joe came into my life. A first date went really well, both of us commenting across the restaurant parking lot to each other, "You passed the first test" ,laughingly, as we made our way back to our vehicles. The second, third, fourth dates...showed us exactly the qualities each of us hold most important in our ideal of what makes a 'good partner'. And well, let's just say that we came to the decision that it didn't make sense to not dive into this, so that's exactly what we did.
Let me tell you a little about Joe... Intelligent, low-key, no extreme opinions/behaviours, hard working, focused, passionate, independent. What makes Joe seem so noble and attractive to me is the life experience he brings with him. Joe came out in college, and upon completing his plan of study, met his first partner, Kris. They remained together for nearly 20 years. A whole lifetime-in Gay Years. Unfortunately, Kris was diagnosed with cancer in his last years of life, and Joe took care of his every need...day and night, for months on end. He put his career completely on hold, not knowing if he would even have a job when or if he came back to work, and nursed his partner through death, in the Hot Springs home they had just purchased and moved into after transplanting themselves from Chicago.
Joe didn't get to experience much of what I did in the dating world, but I know he's got all the right stuff. He wants a relationship similar to what he had with his first partner...something traditional, and I'm probably the most traditional kind of guy anybody would ever meet. I was looking for the same...and everything has just fallen into place, exactly where we're comfortable for it to fall.
So now, the rest will be our history to make...