Tag Archives: Love

Bobby and Blair in 2012 after first starting to date at Boxers NYC.

After 8 years, we had our first date!

2004:

Remember the days before Grindr and OkCupid?  When we had to either use antiquated social sites like XY.com or Gay.com to find other gay men in our area to be friends with, or to do other things with?  Back in 2004 I was one of those people using XY.com to see who else was out there.

Virginia was a lonely world for a gay guy in his late teen years.  I wanted friends or a guy to date.  I found a lot of frogs in that time, but no princes.  To be fair I was in high school and about to head off to college.  I didn’t really know what I wanted at that time.

None-the-less I searched longingly to fill an emptiness inside of me.  Then one day I got a message from a guy on XY.com.  He was cute, but a bit older.  I was a senior in a Virginia high school and he was a freshman at American University in Washington, DC.  We talked for a while on AIM, that’s American Online Instant Messenger for you young kids out there, and tried a few times to go on a date. I loved chatting with him online. He was forward, but honest.  He was sweet and always knew what to say. He made me laugh every day.

At that point in my life I thought laughter was gone from my world, but he had reintroduced it to me. Unfortunately with his just having started college and my trying to wrap up high school we never got the chance to meet in person before I packed up my bags and moved off to college.

2008:

In December of 2007 I graduated from college a semester early.  My boyfriend at the time really wanted to move to New York City and I figured it sounded like fun so I went along for the ride.

When I arrived in New York I realized I didn’t know anyone besides the boyfriend I moved up with.  At this point in my life my online world had already started to expand.  I was on Myspace and Facebook and used them both regularly.

One day when I was sitting bored in my Hell’s Kitchen apartment I decided to see if I could find anyone from my past who may have moved to New York as well via Facebook.  I signed into my account and synced all my contacts into my Facebook profile.  First my AIM contacts, which included that adorably sweet guy from American University who use to chat with me my senior year of high school.

He popped up as someone from my contact list who was also living in New York City now.  I was excited to say the least.  I kind of knew someone and possibly could make a friend.  No, we couldn’t date at this point because I had a boyfriend, but I figured everyone needs friends.

I decided to make the bold move to write him. I was going to be throwing a birthday bar crawl for a friend so I decided to invite him to that. A group situation to break the ice seemed like a good idea.

Our Facebook conversation started February 21, 2008:

Blair responded to my invitation: hey hun, not sure how we know each other, or what party I am supposed to attend, but I guess if you’re coming to NYC to party let me know where and when, k, hope you have a good bday!

Realizing that I probably sounded a bit crazy since we hadn’t ever met or talked since 2004 I thought I should say more. I added someone I talked to 4 years earlier on a dating website to my Facebook page, invited him to a birthday party and expected him to remember me and come. I tried my best to reign in my crazy.

I wrote him back: I did the find which of your AIM contacts are on Facebook.  I decided to check my old screen name from when I lived outside of DC.  I think we met when you were in college at American University.  Now that I live up here in NYC I figured I’d add you as a friend because it never hurts and I really know no one up here lol. I know it seems random!

I guess Blair realized that his original message was a bit curt so he replied:

Blair’s response on Facebook: No, I wasn’t trying to be mean, just confused and didn’t want to ignore you or anything. That’s totally cool, when I moved up here I didn’t know a ton of people either but now I have a really great group of gay friends and girlfriends from work, etc. So yea, if you and your bf or whomever are ever interested in going out just let me know, they’re a lot of fun. And as I said last night I was kinda confused about when and where your party is so if your having one let me know. Have a good day!

Our conversation continued for a couple more exchanges. I tried my hardest to engage with him and he entertained me to an extent, but as he tells me now he didn’t see much of a point. I had a boyfriend and he wasn’t interested in just being friends.

He never showed up at the party i was throwing and we didn’t get to meet that year. I wasn’t all that surprised, but it was worth a shot to run into him again after 4 years.

2009:

Nonchalantly, as all of us do, Blair and I wished each other Happy Birthday on Facebook when our birthday’s came around.  While we both arbitrarily invited each other to our birthday parties that year, neither of us went to the others. Our lives continued on separate paths.

2010:

While living in Hell’s Kitchen on 47th Street between 8th and 9th Avenues I was walking Evian when I noticed a guy walking toward me.  At this point I was married to the guy who I had moved to New York City with, so was still unavailable.

None-the-less the guy caught my eye.  I am only human after all.  As he got closer I could tell he was looking at me too.  He was incredibly sexy.  His walk screamed of confidence. His outfit was fitted and stylish and his scruff was so sexy I could hardly take my eyes off it until I noticed his eyes.

He must have noticed me staring because he kindly said hi as he passed. Once we were a few feet past each other we turned, smiled and waved acknowledging that we knew we had just passed each other in person for the first time since we had started talking in 2004.

Sadly, I was taken and he was walking to meet a guy for a date. The stars were not aligned for us at this point.

2012:

In 2012 I split with my now ex-husband.  Divorces take a long time, but one month after announcing publicly that I was no longer married I got a message that changed my life forever.

I remember it like it was yesterday.  I was sitting at my desk at Roosevelt Hospital in Midtown Manhattan when I noticed my Facebook was blinking.  Someone had either sent me a message or made a comment.  I decided to check it out.

Blair wrote me a private Facebook message on June 27, 2012: So, I know this is kinda random, but I see your pictures on Instagram and Facebook all the time and always thought you were such a cutie. I know we chatted ages ago, but I guess I didn’t realize you were single until very recently.  Would it be too forward to ask you out for a drink sometime? Hope you’re enjoying this lovely day. ~ Blair.

I think I read the message twenty times before calling over my work-wife Daisy to read the message with me and stock his Facebook photos.  A couple of guys had asked me out since the divorce and I had gone on dates, but none had excited me as much as this guy.

I was hesitant but after ten minutes I wrote him back, “Hi Blair”.  Then I must have had further hesitations because it took me two more minutes before I fully responded.

My full response sent on Facebook: You are just the sweetest.  I haven’t been single all that long, or at least public about it, so I’m not surprised you didn’t notice.  I think a drink would be nice. I do remember we use to talk when we both live in the DC area but never were able to meet up.  I am leaving for Virginia early Friday morning and won’t be back until July 12th. Anytime after that would be wonderful. My number is xxx-xxx-xxxx and of course I do think you are cute as well, and a little forwardness is always welcome!

After about 15 minutes he hadn’t responded and my nerves were getting the better of me.  I was asking myself a hundred questions. Was I ready to date?  Am I moving to quickly?  If I wait

Then my conscience started to scream at me.  I couldn’t resist writing more because I felt guilty and as if people would judge me for dating.

I wrote: I do have to be honest though, not sure if I am looking to date at the moment, but a drink doesn’t hurt if that sounds good to you.

Smooth, so freaking smooth.  I guess playing hard to get has never been my strength.  Luckily Blair is patient. He has waited since 2004 to take me on a date, so dealing with a little hesitation didn’t seem much of an issue.

Blair responded like a gentleman: Well that all sounds fine, and I completely understand if you’re not looking to date, I’m kind of in an in-between stage myself, so maybe we can just get a drink and see how it goes, haha. The summer is crazy, I’m in and out a lot as well, but we should be able to find a time after the 12th. (I’m in Chicago July 14-17) Do you wanna just pencil in the 19th and revisit when we get closer?

My response:  Yes, we can pencil in the 19th. That works perfectly for me. I work in Hell’s Kitchen so I can stay in the area post work . If I come back from my trip earlier I’ll let you know. My trip is very up in the air at the moment as it’s last minute and things at the office are so crazy busy.  Chat soon or see you on the 19th .

I was due to take a two to three-week trip to my parents. I was very fortunate because my job at the time let me travel to my parents since my life had so much going on to get my head on straight.  I thought it would be perfect to get me out of the city and away from my ex.

In the days building up to my trip Blair and I started to exchange Facebook messages and text messages.  My attraction to him was growing with every day.

By the time I got to my parents we were chatting regularly.  I obviously through playing hard to get out of the window, until my parent’s home came into play.  Their home tried to force me to play hard to get.

You see, they live in the middle of no where Virginia.  The first day I was at their house a storm hit Virginia and Washington, D.C.  Power and cell towers were knocked out throughout the area.  This was an issue that lasted for about a week.

My parents are fortunate enough to have a land line for phone calls and a backup generator that can give electricity to the guest house I was staying in, but not to the main house.  My trip wasn’t ruined, but I couldn’t get on the internet to chat with Blair there.  I couldn’t text him or call him from my cell phone either.  To top it all off he was in Cape Code with his friend and I didn’t want to interrupt his trip by calling him from the landline. We hadn’t even met after all.

Yet, I learned quickly what type of guy Blair is.  Without hesitation or question he called my parents home that first night to talk to me.  He enjoyed talking to me and getting to know me.  I enjoyed talking to him just as much.  As if we were living decades earlier we started a courtship for two weeks over the phone.

When I could, I would drive the hour and a half to Richmond, VA were I could get service on my cell phone. That allowed us to send each other pictures of our trips and further connect with each other.

By July 11th I was dying to get back to New York City.  When I left I never wanted to go back, but after two weeks of talking to Blair on the phone I couldn’t wait. We got to know everything about each other.  We had no choice, but to talk and learn about each other’s lives.  I think that is something missing in a lot of relationships today.  Thanks to apps like Grindr people often meet, have sex and move on with their lives.

When the time came for me to decide if I would stay an extra week or go back to New York City I decided I had to go back to New York City.  My mother and I hopped in the car and began the long drive up the east coast.  The entire time Blair and I texted each other and sent pictures as I made my way back to the city. He was already back from his trip.

My mom and I arrived around 5 pm.  She had to continue on to Connecticut for a business meeting, but I had business to take care of as well.  I unloaded the car, put Evian in my apartment and immediately headed to Queens.  Blair and I couldn’t wait any longer. We mutually decide that July 19th wouldn’t work.  The moment I got back to the city on July 11th I ran to the subway and our relationship began. We met for the first time in person and never looked back. 

Two years later I have to say, he is every bit as amazing and thoughtful as he had been those first two weeks while I was in Virginia.  He is a gentleman that wants only the best for me.

2014

Today we celebrate our two-year anniversary.  It’s been the best two years of my life.  We’ve moved across the country together and started a new life. We adopted a second dog and began to form our family.  Most importantly, we have decided to get married.  Sometimes I just have to sit back and remind myself that I have a pretty amazing life and an extraordinary partner.

I’m  not a patient person, but sometimes the best things in life are worth the wait!

 

 

 

Distant Memories

It’s one of those days where you look out the window as the rain falls down drowning out the view across the city.  Your iTunes hits the perfectly somber song to flow with the tone of the darkened sky and your mind starts to fade into distant memories.

Part of why I don’t sleep very well is that I hate remembering a lot of my past.  For the past two years it’s been pretty impossible to sleep a solid night without some sort of chemical assistance (I’m only referring to completely legal over-the-counter aids or prescriptions that were written specifically for me by my medical provider).  Today, listening to Please Remember Me by Tim McGraw while watching the rain dance outside my window I can’t help but be taken back to my childhood, but I’m not having one of the bad memories.

When I was young my parents took me and my sister K on a road trip through Europe.  I was enthralled by the trip from beginning to end.  We began in Germany where we rented an Audi to drive through multiple countries including Germany, France, Italy, Austria and Switzerland.

This trip was a once in a life time trip for a lot of people.  I was very fortunate to have parents that wanted to give me this experience.  Yet, what I remember most and the memories I cherish from the trip the most are beyond the obvious.  Yes I loved and remember touring the salt mines of Austria, eating cheese on a mountain side in Switzerland, taking pictures from the top of the Eifel Tower and laying on the beaches of Italy, but what I cherish is what I refer to as the Tim McGraw moments.

My family, like most, has varying taste in music, but one thing we could all agree on was Tim McGraw.  Cruising through the countryside from country to country I still remember my dad (technically my step-dad) singing along to Tim McGraw.  Then there would be songs that just grabbed everyone’s attention and the entire family would belt out to the heavens to the sappy country lyrics of Tim McGraw’s greatest hits.

I don’t have much to say about memories like this one because they are more photographic, but sitting here with the rain falling outside the window transports me to sitting in the back seat of that dark blue Audi singing to Tim McGraw.  I just remember looking in the front seat as my dad threw his head back and bellowed out the words full of joy in his voice.

During the instrumental sections he would turn and look at my mother.  It was never forced, but his natural instincts.  He would smile at her and grab her hand then look back at the road and sway.  You could feel his love, devotion and passion in the subtly of his actions.  Those simple moments are the moments that defined me (and why I feel that taking my step-dads last name was the right thing to do).

My parents have always had this love for each other that I’ve always wanted to have for me.  I’ve always wanted a relationship full of that intimacy and happiness like they share. They constantly showed and taught me that showing you love someone isn’t just about saying I love you, but it can be about a simple look or action.

The memories are distant now but still inspiring to me.  When I have a family one day I want myself and my husband to be the type of parents that shower love on our children and each other setting the same examples for my children that my parents set for me.

The little moments and memories from childhood are the ones you should want to hang on to.  It’s taken me a long time to realize that.  My therapist wanted me to tell her a story unrelated with negative events in my life so she could get a glimpse into my childhood when things were great.  I always mention that I had a great childhood to her, but can never tell stories of it.  This is a story from it that can shed some light into what has developed my passion for love and my belief that love is a great thing even if you have to experience horrid things on the road to finding the one for you.

Drift Away

Song of the Day – Drift Away the Uncle Kracker version

When I was in middle school I got a CD called 70 Oz of Pure Gold.  The CD was a compilation of classic songs.  One of the songs that was included on it was Dobie Gray’s Drift Away.  From the second I got the CD I would listen to that song repeatedly.  Something about it called to me and  made me play it every time I wanted to spin around the living room belting out the feelings in my heart.

Then in 2003 toward the end of my high school years Uncle Kracker released a new version of the song making it well-known in pop culture.

In high school I wanted nothing more than to be in love. I was battling severe depression at the time and was extremely lonely.  At times I wouldn’t know how to deal with my emotions so I would jump in my car and just cruise around the Northern Virginia area.  At the time I owned a yellow mustang convertible with white leather seats and a white top.  I use to put the top down in nice weather and let the sun beat down on my head.  Then I’d turn the CD player, pick a song and hit the gas.  Almost every time I was alone in the car I would sing out to Uncle Kracker’s new version of the song.

The song made me feel as if love could help make all the negative things in your life less important because love is the only thing that matters.  I thought that being in love or feeling loved would make me feel alive.

With those thoughts in mind I would sing the song as a symbol of hope.  Hope for that Hollywood kind of love to enter my life.  Hope that I’d meet a guy that cares about me so much that he can’t take his eyes or hands off me.  Hope for the kind of love where I know my man is on the other side of the room, but if I look up I know he will be looking at me with a smile because I matter to him.  Hope for the kind of love where every kiss feels like the first kiss, full of passion and light.  At the same time there isn’t a need to over analyze the song.  I sang it because I liked it, simple as that.

I am in a very different place emotionally and mentally today compared to when I was in high school.  I’m not desperate for love, but I do want it and believe in love.  I do still want that Hollywood kind of love.  So today, while driving down the country roads in Virginia to my parents house in the pitch black night, when Drift Away by Uncle Kracker came on the radio I couldn’t help but sing it.  The last time I really listened to the song was when I last lived in Virginia.  Without a thought in my mind I turned up the volume and began singing.  I love the line saying “I want to drift away, won’t you take me away.”  I can’t help but love the song for the memories it brings me, for the meaning behind it and for the fact that it shows me how far I’ve come in life.

How Will I Know? (Whitney to the rescue)

How Will I Know?

A girlfriend of mine asked me what my opinion on love is.  She recently met a man and after just 4 months has to decide if she will move across the country to follow him as he takes some big new job.  She is pretty certain she wants to take that leap of faith, but is terrified at the same time when she approaches it logically. (As a disclaimer, she said I could write about this as long as I don’t use her name, but I think it is a good topic to write about.)

Maybe I’m a bit jaded now, but I think love is a risk and I think the act of falling in love is the biggest part of the risk.  I view it, maybe just right now, to be like skydiving.  You may end up graceful and happy but you very well could crash into the ground in a massive heap of cow dung.  I think my discontent with falling in love involves all the anxieties around it.  The games, the asking millions of questions in your head, but that is the risk.  That is also the phase she is in right now.  Question, question, question.

To love you have to open yourself up and to a certain extent allow yourself to be completely vulnerable.  Let’s be honest, making yourself vulnerable is petrifying.  Considering I survived open heart surgery from a literally and physically broken heart (in simple non-medical terms) and an emotionally broken heart I have to say an emotionally broken heart can be harder to recover from than a physical heart defect at times.  You have to be willing to take the risk to have a broken heart in order to love.

My suggestion?  Do it!  Let yourself love.  Take a risk.  If you feel it’s right, dive in head first.  Being in love is one of the best feelings in the world.  If it doesn’t work you are going to go through hell but at least you will have had that time with someone who made you fly to the stars every time s/he looked in your eyes.

My friend keeps going into a rant about, “how do I know if this is the right move?  How do I know if this will work out?  What if he doesn’t love me as much as I think I love him?”  I don’t know how she can find the answers to these questions without either taking a risk or deciding that the risk isn’t worth it and falling in love with someone else down the road.  The decision is hers, but what I can tell her is that her heart will tell her what to do.  If she loves him she will know it.  I believe the decision is already made in her heart, she just has to let logic slip back a little.  Love isn’t logical so you can’t approach it like a business transaction full of logic.

In the meantime though I told her to go home from work tonight, pour herself a cold glass of white wine and turn on Whitney Houston’s How Will I know.  She has then been instructed to dance around her studio apartment letting completely loose.  Then when she falls back onto her bed at the end of the song she will feel free and liberated (at least that’s how I feel after dancing like a fool around my living room) and I truly think her mind tell her what she really wants to do.  Seriously, there is no right answer, you just have to go with your gut.

Maybe it’s not the best suggestion but I know I am living my life one hour at a time right now.  I live for life and accept that I am going to stumble a lot over the next few months or years with bad decisions and good ones, but I am going to take risks and put myself out there in life.  I think the way I am approaching life is a good way to approach her fears of love.

Whitney Houston’s How Will I Know (Note: my favorite version is the Junior Vasquez Club Mix).