[PG - 16Kb - Posted 04/21/2007]
Tonight, you could say, was among the worst nights of my life. Ben and I were fighting, well actually I was fighting more then he was. We normally understand each other and neither of us like to be in this kind of situation but I couldn't help myself I was just so mad. I couldn't believe Ben would hide something so big as a will to me. I know I probably shouldn't have been mad and to be honest I was more upset then anything but anger was easier to get out at that time.
"Ben, I just don't understand why you never told me."
"Michael this is a personal thing, I mean well. I did this for you."
"For me? You signed your life away this quick for me? Bullshit."
"Why are you so mad? I didn't sign my life away, I just made sure that if and when something happened you'd be safe and protected."
"Protected?" I nodded my head, "So what you did today was supposed to make me feel protected?"
"Yes. I'm not gunna fight with you over something so small as this."
"Ben, a will isn't a small thing, it's huge. A will means your ready to give up."
"Baby, I'll never give up on you and this family, never. A will doesn't mean you're ready to give up it means you're preparing for the future, it's a smart thing to do."
I felt the tears begin to well up in my eyes and at that moment I wasn't willing for Ben to see those so I made the quickest exit possible, unaware of where I was going. I started to walk past him and he caught me by the arm but I kept my face away from him.
"Where are you going?"
"I need to get out of here right now." I pulled my arm back and walked out of the house. Once outside, not even off the porch yet, I just broke down. I cried so hard that I had to move or I'm sure Ben would have heard me and then come rushing out to comfort me. I walked down the streets of Pittsburgh for awhile trying to calm myself down and breathe. I honestly didn't feel like dealing with this right now and I looked for somewhere to go to distract me. I definatly wasn't going anywhere on Liberty Avenue, I didn't want to deal with anyone I knew asking a bunch of questions, I wasn't ready to answer. I walked aways out of the normal area and I saw a sign that said 'Bingo tonight next game at 10'. I looked at my watch and it was 9:45. I never played Bingo before but it was a place no one I knew would be at, definatly no one I knew. Even my mom never played Bingo, so I walked in and stood in line. I didn't really know what I was doing so I just copied what the lady infront of me said. After I had my cards I walked around and looked for a spot to sit, most of the single empty spots were taken but then I spotted and elderly lady sitting by herself so I decided to join her. I sat down right across from her and looked down at my cards to try and figure out just what the hell I was doing.
"My boy you look abit lost." The lady said gently.
I looked up at her then looked around to make sure she in fact was talking to me.
"Yes, my boy I'm talking to you."
I smiled, " Then, yah I am abit lost."
"I figured, you look abit sad too."
I nodded, for some reason I felt like I could tell her anything, so I did. " I am, I just had a huge fight with my h...uh." I stopped myself, I knew alot of elderly were heavy church goers and usually follow the bible word for word.
She smiled," You're h?"
I smiled back, " My husband." I said looking at her carefuly. She didn't seem to mind because she just went on like nothing.
"Oh, I'm sorry. Fights are never pleasant things, are they?"
"No there not, that's why I came here to get my mind off things."
"You came to Bingo to do that? Do you do that often?"
"No, honestly I've never played before. I just knew that no one I knew would be here."
"Oh, didn't want to handle all of those unwanted questions?"
I nodded," Yah, something like that." No, exactly like that. This lady was amazing.
"Well, I can understand that, the gays are always so over dramatic." She smiled. "Sorry if that offended you, no offence meant."
I smiled, "Umm none taken, are you, do you have a gay brother or?" I was very curious now but it explained why she didn't care that I was married to a man.
She just smiled back and whispered, "I am a fag's hag for 50 long years now. I understand all of that. My best friend dear, not my brother."
"Oh, well that explains everything." I smiled. I felt so much more at ease knowing that she was a "fag's hag" then just some elderly lady. At least I didn't have to hide or deviate from the truth at all. It was so much more calmer.
"Yes, darling. But it's about to start right away and you'll need a dabber."
I had no idea what she just said," A dabber?"
"Oh, you are new." She grabbed one of hers and handed it to me." Sorry, the only color I have left is pink." She laughed alittle.
I laughed abit too at her, she was the way I'd picture my grandmother. "It's ok."
We played and she told me how it went, I caught on quick although it does have a pretty easy concept to it. I won a few times and ended up with a few hundred actually by the end of the game. After it was over people started to get up and put there coats on, by that time I think Sue knew almost every detail of the fight I had with Ben.
"So Sue, do you have a ride home?"
"I'm walking, I only live a few blocks down."
"Well then how would you like a nice young man to walk you home?"
"Young?" She smiled,"I'd love it."
I took her arm and we walked out of the hall. We walked through the park arm in arm and talked some more.
"So Michael, what do you plan on doing tonight? Go home or go out?"
That was a question I couldn't quite answer yet, I felt like I was ready to go home but something still held me back. "I'm not sure yet Sue."
"Well would you like some advice from an old lady?"
I smiled, "I'd love some."
"I think you should sit down and talk to him, what he did was for you Michael and I know you're scared but you just need to realize that doing this was probably the hardest thing for Ben to do. Not only did he have to go around you about it he also had to think of his H.I.V."
She definatly got me there, Ben probably did have a hard time and I just went and made it worse. "You're right Sue. It was probably hard for him and there I went making it worse."
"Oh honey, it was hard for you too. You had to think about the future and I know how that feels, my Bobby died a few years back from his diease. It wasn't easy for me to have to think about either so I ignored it for along time until one day he wanted to talk about it."
"And how did that go? What did you say?"
"I acted almost exactly like you, I didn't want to think about it and it made me scared to think about it. I could never picture my life without him and here he was wanting to talk about the worst day that could possibly come."
"So then what?" I was so intreged it was like she was living my life somehow in a weird opposite loop.
"I finally sat down and talked about it, it's what he wanted and I know it was something that was just as hard for him to do. It ended up being the smartest and most important conversation of our time together."
That was probably the most saddest and truest thing I had ever heard." Wow, I never thought about it like that before." We kept on walking until we reached an elderly nursing home, we stopped there and she turned to me.
"Remember Michael that death is inevitable and love lasts forever. Don't waste the time you have fighting over something that shouldn't be even a distant sound in your head. Bobby meant everything to me and when he died I was crushed but I knew that it was all going to be ok cause one day I'd go home to him and I know my Michael and my Bobby are just waiting past those pearly gates for me. Life is full are love and hardships but it's up to you what hardships you're going to make something out of. Never lose sight of the future but never forget the present."
My eyes were welling up and for the second time that night I was about to cry, her words had hit me like a lightning bolt. I knew she was right and I knew then what I had to do, what I always should have done. Talk to Ben about it, we never really did, I mean sure when the steriod thing came up or the Anthony thing but we never honestly talked straight out about how he felt, so that's what I had to do.
"Thank you Sue. You've opened my eyes to something I should have saw in the beginning. You're a vey special lady and both Michael and Bobby were lucky to have you. I'm going to do what I need to do, I'm going home."
"Good idea. I knew you'd get it." She smiled. " But this old bird better get her toosh inside before she freezes. I hope I do see you again."
"Plan on it. I'll be definatly coming to visit you, maybe I'll bring Ben along too."
"That would be lovely. I'd love to meet him." she began to walk up the steps but then she turned around." Michael, I hope you two figure things out and I wish the best for you both."
"Thank you Sue. I wish the best for you too. I'll be seeing you." I waved up to her.
She waved back and then retreated into the home. I stood there for abit then began my walk home. I thought alot on my walk home, about how and what I was going to say. I don't think I would start "the talk" tonight but I know I definatly need to do it. Tonight I'll just apologize and maybe have a talk about the night's experiences. Once I got to our front porch I stood there for a bit. The porch light was on and I could see the livingroom one on as well, I saw the t.v was on through the window. I inhaled big and opened the door, I heard nothing when I first walked in so I took my shoes off and hung up my coat then walked into the livingroom. Hunter was watching t.v and he turned around.
"Hey, where have you been?"
"Oh, have fun?"
"Yah, where's Ben?"
"Writing in the bedroom."
"Ok, don't stay up too late."
"Yah, yah." He turned back around to watch his program and I headed up the stairs. I stood infront of the closed door to our bedroom and built my way up to actually go inside. I opened the door a few seconds later and just as I opened the door Ben looked up from his laptop.
"Hey." He said then closed the laptop.
"Hi." I walked into the room farther and sat on the bed and faced him. I crossed my legs and started. "Ben, I am so sorry for the way I reacted. I wasn't mad I was more upset."
"About?" He said calmly.
"I don't know. The will. Well not just the will but. It just got me thinking. I know now that what you did was something I should be thankful for and well I just didn't see it that way then. The first thing that came into my mind was that you were thinking you needed it because you thought that it was close enough to that time. I was worried. I was selfish and I'm sorry."
Ben nodded and looked at me. "Baby, I know that you were worried, I could tell but I did do this for you and Hunter. I was just preparing for what we both know will come. I hope it's no time soon but eventually it will happen and I didn't want for you two to be left with nothing."
I looked down then back up at him. " I know. I just couldn't help the way I felt. It kinda hit me the wrong way, I guess. A lot happened tonight and I learnt alot too."
"You learnt?" He was abit confused.
"Yah. So I'm sorry for the way I reacted and I know it was probably just as hard for you to do then it was for me to hear it. I just love you so much Ben and I guess I didn't want to think about it." I started to tear but I pushed it back as hard as I could but my eyes still watered. " I just can't picture you not in my life and it hurt really bad to have to think about that day."
He bunched his eyebrows, he did that when he tries to hold back tears. " I know, and it was hard for me but I knew it had to be done. I wasn't thinking about that day I was thinking about our future. Thinking about you."
I nodded and then started to cry. " I know and I'm sorry." Ben then grabbed me and he held me in a tight embrace.
"I know you are and I understand why you acted the way you did and it's ok. It's ok."
I stifled my tears and leaned back into his arms. "I just never want to think about this until I have to."
"Me neither. So is it ok?"
I nodded, "Yah, it's ok."
"So," he looked at me." Where did you go tonight?"
I kinda laughed.
"Well, you're probably gunna laugh but I went to Bingo."
He did kinda laugh then asked, "Bingo?"
"Yah, I didn't want to deal with anybody I knew so I walked around and found a sign that said Bingo was gunna start so I went in. I met the nicest old lady there and she helped me out with this. She even taught me a few things."
"You told her about us? You told her you were married to a man?"
"Yah, see she's a fag hag, or so she called it. The same thing sorta happened to her, her best friend died and she didn't want to talk about it but she finally did and she said she felt way better. She told me to never lose sight of the future but to not forget the present and to never lose sight of that. You'd like her. She reminded me of you."
I chuckled abit and said," Well she does kind of sound like me and I bet I would like her."
"She's a wise and amazing lady. I told her I'd go visit her and maybe take you along. Would you like to meet her?"
"She's the one that brought you home to me, I'd love to meet her." He smiled down at me and kissed me.
Well, we didn't really talk the rest of the night but we did do more things. But I think I'll save that for another time.
End of "A Night at...Bingo?" by Badly Drawn Girl (firstname.lastname@example.org)