The day of the party finally arrived. Something I start planning a year in advance was coming to fruition.
I was a little bummed however. A few of my best friends weren’t going to be able to make the party. D and his girlfriend were attending a wedding. J and his girlfriend couldn’t make it since she had finals and needed to study. A and her boyfriend were traveling out-of-state. There were still about 35 other people coming, but it wasn’t going to be the same without them. I was even more disappointed because many of them hadn’t met Smiles. I wanted to introduce him to my closest friends. Apparently my holiday parties have also developed a reputation as being my new “boyfriend” unveiling.
I was crazy all day preparing. In an act of desperation, I asked P to come over early and help with the final touches. She hauled ass and rescued me. My college teammate was also visiting from Maryland, and she pitched in to help finish things up. It would have been a mess without them.
When 7:30 rolled around, guests were supposed to be arriving. Instead, I was just hopping in the shower. (Next year I really need to hire someone to help me work the event.)
After I showered and dressed, I came out to the kitchen to find no one had arrived yet. Everyone’s late arrival was working to my advantage. People began to trickle in. Smiles was one of the earlier guests to arrive. He showed up with a bottle of wine and a very neatly decorated present. We exchanged a very nice kiss, and one of my old roommates shouted from across the room, “Oh. So that’s the new boyfriend!”
I cringed. He used the “B-word.” I should have looked at Smiles’ face to see his reaction.
I took Smiles into my bedroom to put his coat down and thanked him for the present. I unwrapped it, and it was a very cute tree ornament — Such a sweet gesture, especially for him! I gave him another big kiss to thank him.
More guests arrived, and the night was progressing pretty smoothly. Someone was commenting on Smiles helping me with some of the party maintenance and how he was so much “better than the last one,” referring to N. Just then, the door opened, and N arrived. The room got pretty quiet and everyone turned to me to see my reaction.
I walked over and gave him a hug. It was slightly awkward. Luckily, I was in the middle of things, so I didn’t have to linger on the awkwardness. When I finished, I walked over to him and pointed out all the food. He was overwhelmed by it all, and told me he was going to sample one of everything and let me know what he liked best.
I felt torn all night, and this happens every year. I feel like I never get to spend that much time with everyone because there are so many people there to talk to. There wasn’t even much work to be done during the party. I do a good job of planning ahead of time so that doesn’t happen.
My sister continued to give me dirty looks since N gravitated to her, being one of the few guests he knew.
I was having fun, and I was maintaining a good level of inebriation. Things were going well.
After a while, N was leaving to meet up with some friends. I was talking to Smiles at the time, so I introduced them, and they began to chat a bit. After he left, I told Smiles he was the ex. “Oh. He’s really nice.” I told him how he hasn’t made the effort to be a friend since things ended, and Smiles scolded me for being bitchy. I was being ever so slightly bitchy, but I thought it was humorous this was the stance he was taking. In reality, I didn’t want to be bitchy. I wanted my friend back…
As the night progressed, I received numerous praises for the food and the apartment. They couldn’t believe I whipped it into shape in the amount of time I had. Comments were also made looking forward to next years party and the food I prepare. I warned them an invite is no guarantee for the following year. It’s my way of making sure I maintain friends ;). Two comments were repeated a lot throughout the night I really appreciated. First, everyone told me how skinny I looked. That’s never a bad thing to hear. Secondly, they all told me how great Smiles is.
When things died down a bit, I took the opportunity to go out on the balcony with some friends and smoke a little. I think it put me over the edge a bit on top of all the alcohol I drank. I switched over to water to regain my composure.
We never did make it to the bar. Part of that was Smiles’ doing. I was game to move things to a local pub I frequent, especially after the continued insistence of my sister. However, Smiles was ready to call it a night. I’d already drank a lot, and it was getting late, so I gave into his desires. I said goodnight to the last guests as they left and got my teammate from Maryland settled for the night since she was staying over.
Smiles was a superstar for me that night. He took care of me and made sure I wasn’t getting too drunk. He helped clean up all night and remove trash. He schmoozed and chatted with my friends. I was very proud to be standing next to him at the end of the night. I was finally getting support from him the way I tried to support him. It felt really great.
That night, I fell asleep relatively quickly in his arms. It felt perfect. I was happy, and the only thing on my mind after that was sweet dreams…Follow @onegayatatime