Flip once coined the phrase “Right Sizing”. It had a certain resonance and I gladly expropriated it on occasion. Today I realized my problem with the phrase. It implies that there is an appropriate size for things and while I can tell you twelve ounces are the right size for a can of soda – not the monstrous mega-gulps that Seven-eleven wants to foist upon us, I am less sure of the right size for my gayness.
This weekend was the third Friday of the month: Married Gay group at the Center. I look forward to this monthly event – an interesting group, a safe environment to continue to grow, and a mass migration to a Gay bar after the meeting to hang and drink.
This weekend was also “fence” weekend. My son-in-law was coming down to help – okay, more than just help – replace 120 feet of fencing (a daunting task). Another son was also coming to be part of the crew – family central. The festivities fully commenced Saturday morning, but the masses were gathering Friday night.
A few months ago I would have fixated to the last moment on how to spend my Friday night: this time by mid-week when I realized how things were breaking, I announced to Carrie that I would be home Friday night, home where I should be.
Normally the right size would be to go to my meeting – it is only once a month and it is not as if I am going out for a CL style hookup. But this week it would have been the wrong size. And as I thought about it today I realized that much of the rest of my life will be a balancing act – balancing an already incredibly full life while integrating new pieces into my puzzle.
Part of the problem is that while Einstein gave us relativity, Newton gave us conservation of matter. If life is measured by hours and all my hours are accounted for, then anything added will create decisions and choices which can be summed up in one word: conflicts. Carrie and I are trying to create a responsible framework – my nights out and the same for her – if only for a glass of wine with a friend. But on many weekends the commitments of life fill the schedule before any chance to create the separations.
It has been a great weekend – surrounded by family: building, eating, drinking, and of course talking. We had a festive dinner last night – nine of us – and I was in my customary place at the head of the table. Not much more I could ask: which is ultimately the problem – balancing the joy of this family weekend with being gay. Not “being” gay in the essence of Nate sense – I am out to the family and my gayness is pretty much accepted in many ways. No, the problem is living gay – meeting men, developing relationships. Heck, with my schedule even hooking up is more complicated than I would have thought.
So I have no magic answer today. I realize that having a busy life is not an excuse to stop accepting - and growing with my gayness, but I also realize that my family has to maintain a clear primacy. It has been a year and a half of challenges: I suspect I will find my way through this also – being true to my family without denying myself. And I am sure there will be times when I choose poorly, but hopefully more often I will choose wisely.