It Was a Cold and Snowy Night
If I had known "the real" Tracey before meeting her, I would have run the other way. As fate would have it though, I experienced a life changing couple of months. I can say without hesitation that I don't regret anything that happened during the time we were together. I am the person I was meant to be because I allowed myself this experience.
After our first meeting, we met for dinner a few times and I went to her place to meet some of her friends. I also met her daughter who was fifteen years old, and that, along with a few er... minor details, would ultimately ruin any real relationship we could possibly have had.
Tracey wasn't one to tolerate a whole lot of emotional garbage. She knew I had about zero experience with woman and didn't seem affected by it. She wanted to have fun, live in the moment, and worry about the consequences later. For me, this meant keeping a lot of things to myself, I just played along. She reminded me of Anaya so much, it was like I had know her for a long time. She was playful, like while we were laying on the couch in her living room watching a movie, she would tease me about being tall, how she was still stronger than I was, and that would ultimately lead to mini wresting matches to see who could hold the other person down. She would always win, and like Anaya, she took great pleasure in being able to overpower me. I have thought about the power position in both cases, but have never really come to any conclusion.
In any case, I never saw it as negative, I never felt uncomfortable.
I have thought a lot about the first night I spent at her apartment. I lived an hour away from Tracey and it was the middle of winter. I was tired of the driving and she told me to just crash at her place the next time I made the trip. It wasn't meant to mean anything, she had mentioned it before, but do to the fact that I was lying and living a secret life from the people I was living with, I just didn't do it. How I thought I was going to
live my life like this I don't know.
I do know that from the very beginning I was hesitant to stay because of Tracey's daughter. First and foremost, I will never do anything that could be considered hurtful to a child. From my years working at the shelter for runaways, I know a lot of trauma occurs for teens when parents date other people. I was also consumed with guilt because during the day I was being this conservative role model to 300 children, and then at night I felt like I was letting one down. I knew Ali, Tracey's daughter, had spent a significant amount of her life with her mom's ex, who was a woman, but that still didn't make it acceptable with me. I was letting myself explore the possibility of being gay, but I didn't want to include a child in any part of it.
Tracey said she understood where I was coming from, and that Ali spent a lot of time with her grandparents and she could go there at any time. She had arranged for her to spent that particular night with them anyway because they were coming back from a trip to Washington D.C. and her grandparents missed her.
To make the evening fun for everyone, Tracey arranged a welcome home party for her parents and a lot of people came over to eat, drink, and quite obviously meet me. I did realize at one point that I was the only white person in the room and I just kind of giggled. I mean, oh my gosh, if my family had any clue about that evening. It was surreal at best. It makes me smile just to think about it. This doesn't mean though that I wasn't extremely nervous. Nervous to meet just about everyone she knew, (Gretch did the same thing to me on our third date no less) and also because I knew I was staying alone with Tracey, a lesbian who was attracted to me. I wasn't panicking like when I was with Kate, but pretty close. Behind that anxiety thought, was excitement, it was excitement that I couldn't deny at that point. That night is very vivid in my mind for many different reasons.
Soon the parents arrived and Tracey's mom chatted with me about being a teacher. Thankfully, she did not ask what school specifically,just the city. In so many cases over that year people would ask specifically what school. I would either lie yet again about some aspect of my life, or change the subject. I lied to everyone and anyone. I was the biggest liar on this earth. I was good at it and proud when I accomplished it. I lied about being a Christian and I of course lied about dating women. Do you know what this makes me out to be. I feel terrible thinking about this now, but I will make that another post. That night, I wasn't feeling bad about anything. I was living in the moment. After a couple hours of this intense conversation with Tracey's parents and friends, the party broke up and we were alone. Tracey told me to just lay on the couch and relax while she cleaned up a bit. I grabbed a pillow and was watching a music video when I fell asleep. The next thing I remember is Tracey rubbing my shoulders as I woke up.