26 twenty six
I knew something like this would happen. Rejection, frustration, people would judge you for being you, they'd force their ideals at you. I stared at my shaking hand as I walked out of the coffee shop. I felt like eyes were burning in my back, looking at me like I was an abnormality, an aberration, not part of the norm.
A million questions ran through my head. What will Rick's dad do? What would Rick do? What will my parents say? What would my dad say? I remembered the way my mom looked at me with dejection. What should I do? Would we keep up with this relationship that our parents obviously didn't want to happen. Rick's the first born, I'm an only child, and the fact that we both were exploring our sexuality would disappointment both our families. I knew it the moment I said yes to Rick but I listened to what my heart told me.
How did other people deal with this?
I walked aimlessly and eventually found myself at school. It was a Sunday but the school church was open for Mass. In a Normal Sunday, I would have been there sitting, listening to the sermon. But not today, especially with my current situation, the church would be the last place I'd think of going to.
From the distance, I could hear the choir singing, I walked briskly until I couldn't hear the music. I ended up in front of the gate at the back of the school. I looked around to make sure no one would see me. When I was certain I was by myself, I opened the gate and squeezed myself inside.
I was welcomed by the bright sunlight, the mango trees were still lined and blooming. The animals that used to run around the first time I was here were nowhere to be seen. I rested under the mango tree, and took a deep breath and inhaled the fresh cool air. I closed my eyes and let all emotions I've been holding on to the washed over me.Tears came streaming out if my eyes.
I didn't know how long I have been sitting there. The sun had already cast a shadow on the trees that lined the horizon. My stomach was grumbling since I haven't had breakfast. I pulled out my phone which I haven't looked at since after that time at the cafe. I was expecting Rick to contact me but it was Janet, telling me to come home earlier.
It's 3:45pm. I have spent a good amount of time staring into nothingness.
From a distance I heard a dog bark, it was the beagle I saw that time, but today he was with someone. A man probably in his thirties with a pitcher and a cup in hand approached me. He gave me a nod and sat down.
"Hi, Im Paul." He greeted without looking at me.
"You know this is private property."
I turned to him, embarrassed.
"But I saw you come in the gate and I thought you needed the scenery."
I hugged my knees and gave a slight nod. Paul filled the cup his holding with the content of his pitcher and handed it to me.
I took a sniff just to be sure.
"It's iced tea." He grinned at me. Paul had a nice tan, probably from working under the sun, his hair had gold streaks and he's got a nice smile.
"Wanna talk about it?"
I looked up at him after drinking from the cup. I only realized I was really thirsty after having a drink.
"Or not? You don't talk to much don't you?"
"Ok. Then, let's stare at the sky then."
Paul didn't force me to talk but he kept on rambling about his beagle named Bob and his ducks. He was on it for almost an hour but was interrupted when my phone started buzzing.
Your mom and dad are here, come home. It says. It was from Janet.
It was almost 5pm.
The fear started coming back and I could feel my whole body shaking. Paul noticed and gave me a hard stare.
"Trouble at home?"
I nodded. "I-i. My mom found out I'm gay. And wanted me to tell my dad."
He didn't respond, apparently it was his turn to go silent.
"And my boyfriend told his parents about us, but he got into a fight with his father. "
I stared at my shaking hands. I could feel my tears welling up once more. I swallowed the lump in my throat.
"Hmm. That's normal. You see, I'm straight as a pole so don't really have the right words to say. But take it one step at a time. Start with you parents. Then be at ease with yourself, the rest of the world will follow. "
He gave me a pat on the back. "Ok, maybe not the world, but at least the people who cares for you."
He stood up and picked up the empty cup and his pitcher. "Then if it doesn't goes well, you can come back here and stare into nothingness, I'd give you permission."
I nodded and and thanked him. Then I stood up and started walking home.