I don’t know why but yesterday just felt full of good things and possibilities.
I wrote a recap of it at Medium but I didn’t even include all the details.
Perhaps the weirdest and most unexpected thing was my contact with Richard, who is my son Dylan’s girlfriend Savannah’s guardian. He’s not even her biological grandpa, although he was married to her biological grandma. He lost his wife to cancer around the same age as I lost J.
He’s considerably older than me, about 10 years. We’ve always had the common interests of wanting what’s best for our kids (obviously, in his case, because he stuck around to raise a child who wasn’t even biologically related to him—and he did a wonderful job with her.) And then when J was diagnosed with cancer, we had being spouses to people with cancer in common. He was always nice but kind of quiet. I just always assumed that he thought I was too much of a hippie weirdo for him.
So last night, when I went to pick up Dyl from his girlfriend’s, I went in and talked to Richard for almost an hour. And suddenly he was completely different with me and revealed much more about himself.
He told me that he had read the bulletin from J’s service, including the 800 or so words I wrote about him. He said it was nice and interesting to read things he didn’t know about J.
He also said that he was raised Episcopalian, the same as the religion that J switched to. And he said that he was thinking about checking out that church where J’s service was held.
He also revealed that he’s totally affirming of LGBTQ people and he’s also politically liberal (though probably not as much so as I am, lol.) He even complimented me on my tattoo memorializing J, which he might have just been doing to be polite, I don’t know.
I have to admit that I previously assumed that he was turned off by all my tattoos and nose ring. And who knows, he may well still be.
But yesterday was the first time I thought about what if? I mean, we’re both widows/widowers. We apparently have more in common than I thought we did.
But at the same time, I can also point to a million reasons why we would never work as a couple. He’s retired (took early retirement at the beginning of the pandemic because he had the money and really hated his job.) He’s very structured and schedule-oriented, which I am SO not. And possibly most importantly, he’s allergic to cats.
So I’m not really thinking that anything is going to come of this. But he might turn out to be a much better friend than I ever thought. And that’s nice because he’ll most likely be my in-law someday.
He’s actually a lot like J, weirdly enough. He’s a genuinely nice guy but he’s also pretty shy until you get to know him. He said that he gets his feelings hurt easily, just as J did. And he’s got a secret rebellious streak that he’s allowing himself to indulge (as evidenced by the fact that he’s growing out his hair.)
I’ve seen pictures of him when he was younger and he was hot. But maybe I just need to get laid lol. Not by him! I’m not actually sure who can fill that role for me, so I don’t try. But I won’t lie: I do miss sex a lot, which is quite inconvenient.
To be clear, I don’t feel anywhere near ready to date yet. But yesterday was just the first time I wondered “what if?” And that feels weird and disloyal.
I think that for now, this is just another example of people being there for me when I didn’t expect it. And it’s honestly pretty nice.