Five Year

On Monday morning, my wife and I got into the car, buckled our seat belts, and took our VW Jetta on one last drive. She’s had that car since she got it new, a 2008 model: “Smokey.” Tinted windows, cloth interior, charcoal grey on the outside, and seat warmers in the front seat. Those seat warmers are so great for sore backs, cold mornings, and practical jokes on your partner.

I asked D what her favorite memories were. They came easy – going to get the car. It was an upgrade from a 1980s VW Vanagon camper. She was amazed it had cup holders – cup holders! What an upgrade.

She also talked about driving out to North Carolina to go to art school where she learned glass blowing and pottery.

Five years ago to the day, she told me about going to that art school and doing glass blowing, as we were riding in Smokey, on our very first date. I silently mused “that’s kinda hot,” and I wondered more about this girl who was my first real date with another girl.

We talked about our favorite memories together in the car: driving to our first date together, driving home from our first date (the first time we held hands, while listening to “the everybodyfields”), driving home from the hospital with our daughter – a nervous wreck that we had a tiny human in the car!

We talked about no so good memories – like when I spent hours alone in the car, driving around North Georgia for in home counseling with kids and teens, and the drive to the hospital while I was in labor – an hour long drive of o.m.g.

We talked about hoping we will form new good memories in our new vehicle.

It was hard not to feel nostalgic. Here we were on our five year anniversary of our first date, driving our car one last time.

But also, Sunday held its own nostalgia. Sunday marked seven years since my grandmother Nellie passed away rather suddenly. I found myself crying that morning, remembering and mostly just missing her. Wishing she could have met my precious family.

I found myself crying again at the senseless mass murder of people like me, like my wife, like my friends.

I got word that my brother’s wife was in labor, and it looked like a new life would be born before the end of the day.

I played with my daughter during the day on Sunday, and as I watched her, I wondered what kind of world she, and the other new little one would have to deal with. I worried. I fretted. I looked at her again, and I found a sense of calm and peace in knowing that she is in this world. And that she will make it even better, and that I can make it even better.

I had picture texts of a precious new life on my phone before bed that night, and again on Monday morning, so here we were, and here I was – in a state of deep thought, remembrance, and wonder.

We had two stops to make on Monday before we could eat together for our anniversary.

The first one took about an hour, the second one took over two.

Before we went to eat, we took Smokey in and traded for a different vehicle, one that will be more reliable, and one that will make more sense for our family.

Before that, we looked at a screen in a doctor’s office. We saw my healthy ovaries, my uterus in great shape, and a beautiful gestational sac with perfectly formed walls,

But empty.

This was our third look. The second was the hardest. I didn’t cry this time. Not at the doctor’s office, anyway.

I listened and asked questions about the surgery I will need to remove it. D and I looked at each other, on our five year anniversary of being together, and all I needed to know I was going to be ok was to have her look at me with her caring eyes.

On our five year anniversary, we talked about my fears of anesthesia and fears about future attempts at pregnancy. We talked about our new minivan and how did two hippie/granola lesbians wind up with one. We laughed about some things, gave each other personal and reflective cards, and we were silent together in the way that’s an okay silence, the reassuring kind.

They call it a “blighted ovum.”

In the best of terms, it sucks.

As we let go of that dream and look on to the healing process and then trying again, I wonder at how the miscarriage of justice for the LGBT community is so similar.

Just when it looks like things are positive last year at this time, the backlash starts in the form of bills and rhetoric, and now a massacre.

There aren’t answers for why this pregnancy didn’t work. We even tested the embryo, and she was given a clean bill. One of the nurses said, “Sometimes you don’t know. There’s just so much wrong in this old sinful world.”

There is so much wrong. In this world.

But you know what? We have the power to make it right.

And love will make it right.

Five years ago from Monday, D looked over at me and said she’d like to go out again sometime. I said I’d like that, too. She also said that she wanted to look at some stars – the first time we found ourselves in a familiar place – not wanting our time together to end.

Now here we are, and there is no end in sight. And I like that.

With Love that wins,

C.

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