Posts Tagged nephew

The Next Chapter

Two years ago, I started this blog. I began writing because I felt alone. I knew there had to be other gay men out there who were looking for the same thing I was, and I wanted a way to connect with them.

grindrAt the time, I just ended my first gay relationship, and I found myself in very unchartered waters. I was already out to close friends, but not publicly. Because I had so few gay friends and a strong aversion to gay bars, I had to find a mate digitally. I began serial dating, at one point going on four dates in four days — And thus, One Gay At A Time was born.

Since the beginning, I have gone on MANY dates and put myself in many situations well outside my comfort zone. I have not only grown more comfortable in my own skin, but I’ve also grown up as a gay man. I got all the hookups out of my system and began searching for a meaningful, long-term relationship.

This blog began as an open forum diary of the daily occurrences I encountered navigating the gay world. I told my side of the story honestly in hopes that others out there would be able to relate, comment and most importantly, realize they are not alone.

The time has come for the next chapter of my life and for this blog. For quite some time I’ve been blogging about CK (aka Clark Kent or Superman). You’ve gotten to know him through my eyes in the early stages of our relationship. It’s been some time since I’ve blogged, and I apologize for leaving you, my readers in the lurch. I do not mean to abandon the small community I’ve worked so hard to foster, but I’ve been struggling with the next chapter of the blog.

When I first told CK about the blog, he was very open to and even grew excited about the idea of my writing our relationship. Over time, as you could probably understand, his excitement waned, and we began to argue about the content of the blog.

I had to make a choice between the blog and my man. It’s quite obvious which I chose. As a result, I will no longer be blogging about the specifics of my relationship with CK. However, in lieu of continuing to finish our story in a daily dairy format, let me catch you up on what has happened since July. Here are some of the highlights…

In July, CK joined my family for our annual beach vacation. While I went for the entire week, he only joined us for a few days. It was the first time we’d spent an extended period of time apart, and with my trust/cheating baggage, it was a true test of my sanity. I was thrilled and relieved when he finally arrived. It was also nice that he would finally get to spend some real-time getting to know my parents.

In early August, I traveled to Miami, CK’s birthplace to surprise his family with a visit to celebrate the birthdays of his two beautiful nephews (turning 1 and 2 only a week apart). I felt incredibly special taking this trip with CK. I was meeting his ENTIRE extended family. Before this point, I’d only met his mother. I was welcomed into the family with open arms and came to grow strong bonds with them over just a handful of days. This was unchartered territory for both of us, as I’d never been brought home to meet the family by anyone other than my high school girlfriend, and he’d never brought a man home to meet everyone before. It could not have worked out better!

Around Labor Day, CK and I went on week-long vacation to the Hamptons with 15 of my friends and family. While there, our relationship grew very strained. I felt he was trying too hard to impress my friends. I wanted him to be himself so all of them would come to love the man I knew, not the man I felt he was trying to be for them. By the end of the week, I reached my breaking point. I was so stressed out from organizing the vacation and ensuring everyone was happy that I made myself miserable, and I took it out on the person closest to me. In the penultimate moment of the trip, one night we not only exchanged words but also fists and shoves, as my closest friends and sister witnessed the lowest moment of our relationship.

It took a lot of time for CK and I to figure things out. This wasn’t the first time our relationship reached physicality, but I hoped it was the last. It also took a long time for things to return to normal between CK, me and my circle of friends. My sister wasn’t speaking to me for over a month and my friends had semi-ostracized me from typical gatherings. I burned a lot of bridges on that trip, and I am still working to rebuild them today. You can expect to read about my experiences and feelings dealing with issues such as physical violence in a relationship as one of the topics I will cover in coming posts.

In September, CK and I found an apartment in Hoboken to call our own. We moved in together in the midst of Hurricane Sandy’s wake on November 2. Although the experience of moving immediately following a hurricane is incredibly overwhelming, we are both stronger as a result of the experience. In my experience, moving in with a lover is unlike sharing a space with any other. You’ll certainly be reading about my experiences and the things I’ve learned from this experience as well.

After Sandy exhausted my last modicum of energy, I decided I was too tired to shave my upper lip. CK and I both decided to raise awareness and funds to fight prostate cancer by growing mustaches for Movember. I proudly raised over $500 for charity as a result of my stache, and I was thrilled when we both shaved them off — We both looked like pedophiles.

For the first time in my life, I had someone to take home to meet my family for Thanksgiving. Before venturing home, I sent my extended maternal family an email to get the awkwardness out of the way. You’ll be pleased to know my family welcomed him with open arms. I imagine coming out to extended family creates a lot of anxiety for man, as it did for me, so I hope sharing my experiences will encourage more to share the truth with the ones they love.

When I returned to Hoboken after Thanksgiving, preparations began immediately for what would have been my Sixth Annual Holiday Bash. This year, it became Our First Annual Holiday Bash. I finally had someone to share the hosting duties with, making it extra special.

Although CK and I spent Christmas apart, after all the festivities with my family, I hopped on a flight down to Miami to spend the rest of the holiday season and New Years Eve with my man and his family. CK’s sister and brother-in-law planned a trip with their two boys to Disney World for two days. After a little persuading, I convinced CK we should join them. I preferred Disney to a raucous gay party any day, and it was truly magical to see Disney World through the eyes of a two-year-old.

In February, CK and I took a romantic trip to Mohonk Mountain House in New Paltz, NY. Although it seems we can’t go anywhere without having some kind of quarrel like an old married couple, the trip was amazing and couldn’t have come at a better time. We went ice skating, snow shoeing, swimming, hiking, and much more. It was a perfect escape for both of us to get out of the city and away from the bustle of it all after the holidays.

In between, there have been countless brunches, parties, trips, nights out, Broadway shows, fights… Oh yea, and plenty of sex — Can’t forget the sex! Overall, things have been going well for us. You have good days and bad days, but you have to realize the bad days are just there so you appreciate the good ones all the more. I am thrilled to announce, this past Saturday, CK and I celebrated our one-year anniversary at the restaurant we went to on our first date, Frankies Spuntino 570. Although we waited nearly an hour, the evening was perfect, and I look forward to many more years together.

Although I won’t be detailing the specifics of my relationship going forward, I hope to share with you what I have learned along the way. It’s not easy being in a relationship, but then again, the things that are worth it never really are.

To my most dedicated readers who haven’t let me lack of posting stop them from commenting words of support on my blog, thank you. You are what has motivated me to get back into this once again. I feel like many of you have integrated my writing into your daily routines, and I have left you with your morning coffee in hand and no reading material. You will not see the frequency of posts you may have grown accustomed in the past, but I still hope you find time in your lives for One Gay At A Time.

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Nearing the End of My Rope

Tensions were high between CK and I. Nearly every night, we’d find something to argue about. Although it didn’t always result in an explosive fight, there always seemed to be some kind of noise in the background. The honeymoon was officially over.

FightWhen we woke in the morning, CK apologized for the night before, as did I. As we got ready for work, we both agreed underwear was not something we should be fighting about. After making us breakfast, we ate, showered together, got dressed and made our way to the PATH.

A day prior, CK got tickets to see Hot Chip in Brooklyn from a coworker . He asked if I was interested in going. We had already planned to head to Brooklyn to visit Hip since he was recovering from his second hip replacement surgery, so I said, “Sure. Why not?”

While we were at work, we nailed down plans via text and phone. Since I finished much earlier than he did, I hopped on the subway and made my way to his office. He wasn’t quite ready yet, so I asked for his coffee order and hit up Starbucks. I didn’t sleep very well the night before, so I needed something to keep me up and give me the energy to be a fun date.

While riding the subway out to Brooklyn, I asked CK if he requested the time off to join my family on vacation. He reacted to the question as if this was some big surprise. I’d only been asking him about it for a solid month. When he asked me to take time off and book a flight to Miami for his nephews birthdays, I did it without question. Now that I was asking him to take time off to be with me and my family, he didn’t think he could get the time off. I was p*ssed! I found it quite selfish. If he’d requested the time when I originally asked, we wouldn’t have gotten into the argument that ensued. As I said, we seemed to be fighting about everything.

The rest of the ride wasn’t pleasant. It grew to far higher proportions when we got off the subway. I wanted nothing more than to get right back on the subway and make my way home. I no longer had any interest in going to the concert, and I told him that. It takes two to fight, so I take half the responsibility, but he was being rude and treating me in a way I wasn’t willing to subject myself to. As a result, I skulked behind him as we walked through Prospect Park. As he yelled at me for not helping him navigate our way to the concert, I shouted back, “Fine. Just go without me! I don’t want to go anymore. I’m not going to have any fun.” I wanted nothing to do with him or Hot Chip.

I think he understood I was serious and responded by apologizing. “Can we just get past this tonight?” he asked. “Do we have to sacrifice our entire night over this fight?” I didn’t want to just put on a happy face and grin through it. I was angry, and to be honest, I wanted to go home out of spite. The concert was something he wanted to go to, and just as he didn’t put in the effort to come with me on vacation, I wasn’t going to come to the concert. I realized how unproductive this would be, so I agreed to go (not before numerous attempts to make my way back to Hoboken).

When we finally made it in to the concert, CK bought me a few beers, and we cut through the crowd to watch the concert already in progress. Surprisingly, I started to have a better time. Admittedly, I’d never heard of the band before we arrived, and I didn’t recognize any of their music. The fighting ended, and CK was being affectionate. We even made a few friends while moving from place to place among the crowd and managed to bum a smoke off some nice guys.

When the concert was over, it was far too late to visit Hip. I felt really bad considering he was the original plan and reason for the trip to Brooklyn. I wasn’t thrilled we sacrificed his visit for a concert, but in the end, it was CK’s decision.

On the walk to the subway, we found ourselves in a situation once again that birthed yet another argument. When we were a safe distance away from the situation, I began to calmly explain how p*ssed I was at him. Once again, he didn’t think it was a big deal and almost brushed it off as if I was overreacting. I didn’t care. To me, it was so much more. I told him explicitly how much I didn’t like these types of situations, and he completely disregarded those feelings. I don’t think he consciously acted in spite of my request — Quite the opposite. I don’t think he was thinking at all.

After arguing about the matter the rest of the way to the subway, I decided I wasn’t going to engage him in conversation any longer. Clearly I wasn’t getting through to him. We rode the subway with a large group CK decided to befriend. I wanted nothing to do with them. When he asked me questions or tried to introduce me, I simply ignored him. If he wasn’t going to take my feelings into consideration any longer, I wasn’t going to regard his either. I began to wonder if this was something we’d ever get passed. Maybe we were just inherently different. Maybe he would never be able to see things through my eyes. I began to think about what it would mean to end things. Obviously that would be my last resort, but I began to prepare myself for that possibility.

FriendsArgueI was also in a tough spot because I was spending the night at his place. By the time we resurfaced in midtown, CK finally realized I was ignoring him. He started to get irritated by this, and yet another fight broke out between us. This time, I didn’t care. I went nuts. I didn’t care who saw us fighting or what they heard as I laid into him. We argued back and forth about the severity of the incident at hand for some time. He didn’t realize it, but as each of these incidents came up, my tolerance for them dwindled more and more. Toward the end of the argument, I think CK finally got a clear idea of the zero tolerance I had left. I’m not the most bending person (and that’s an understatement), but this was one sticking point I wasn’t going to bend on. I didn’t care how small the infraction. He had a choice, and he needed to pick me.

He finally understood my stance and apologized for everything. He didn’t think this fell under my umbrella of discomfort. He finally understood that nothing in this realm would be acceptable to me. We were able to civilly walk the rest of the way back to his place, but the conversation was certainly nonexistent.

When we got back to his bedroom, I brushed my teeth, stripped down to my boxer briefs and climbed right into bed. CK finished what he needed to do before bed and climbed into the opposite side of the bed. That night, we didn’t go to bed fighting, but there wasn’t a lot of love in the bed either.

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Fast Forward

Sunday morning, I woke to find myself sleeping next to a gorgeous man once again. How lucky was I – Two nights in-a-row spent in the arms of Clark Kent.

The night before, CK asked me to promise to get him up and on with his day at an am hour. I agreed. When I woke, I glanced at the clock. It was 9:00am. My alarm wasn’t set for another forty-five minutes. I rolled over and pulled CK into my tight embrace, cradling his entire body with mine. We fit together like intricate puzzle pieces. We became so entangled in each other, we jokingly called it forking. I didn’t fully wake him. He let out a tiny groan of pleasure when I pulled him in tight.

This, of course, wasn’t enough for me. I wanted more. No, not sex – Body contact. I began to remove his briefs, and he willingly aided my attempt. I followed suit and removed my own boxer briefs so our bodies would be pressed against each other skin-to-skin. I enjoyed his touch so much. He felt amazing. I fell asleep in this position until my alarm woke us at 9:45. He asked me what time it was, and I told him. His only response was, “Too early.” He grabbed my arm, rolled to his other side, and pulled my arm around him fully engulfing him.

He was such a sweetheart. We cuddled for quite some time. Periodically we’d switch positions when one of our arms would lose feeling. This was always accompanied with a myriad of kisses.

I hadn’t completely fallen for him. Why was this time different? There was nothing holding me back this time. Nothing, except myself. I was protecting myself. I didn’t bring my baggage with me on this trip, but I did bring my smarts. I knew it was too early to dive in with him. I wanted to build this the right way. If you rush the foundation, the building will collapse in due time. If you take the time to build a strong base, it can last a lifetime. I wanted to take my time. I was in no rush. Sure, I’m 28, but I still had a lot of my life in front of me to love, lose, and find love once again. I was proceeding with cautious optimism.

I think my caution goes back to our early interactions in which he propositioned me to come over for sex. I knew then and there I was dealing with a different kind of animal. Maybe he could be tamed. Maybe not. Only time would tell, but until I knew he could be tamed, I would protect myself.

The cuddling and kissing continued for some time. When my alarm rang again at 10:30, we were both a little more awake. Warning: The following may be too graphic for some. He began, as he did many times, orally pleasuring me. He loved worshiping me in that way. I certainly wasn’t about to complain. I also made sure to return the favor. I know I’m pretty good, but it wasn’t as easy for me – He was a definite challenge. He was well endowed, and at times more than I could handle. He would get a little overzealous with his hands and my head, and I would find the need to pause to ensure I didn’t suffocate.

We continued to play in bed until there was a natural pause in the action. I suggested we hit the shower. I attempted to find a way to toss him over my shoulder. I knew I could pick him up, but tossing him like a sack of potatoes was a different story. I failed. I told him I was holding up my end of the bargain to get him moving before noon. He protested and said, “Not yet. Just two more minutes,” and pulled me in to cuddle more.

Warning: The following may be too graphic for some. We started to kiss again. Finally, he said, “Shall we?” I replied, “We shall.” With that, I scooped him up and carried him to the bathroom. We hopped in the shower, and I took the bar of soap and washed his entire body. I used my own body to build up a lather as well until I found myself grinding on his backside and him bending over moaning in pleasure. Things never escalated from there to full penetration, but the didn’t need to. What we were doing was hot enough. He took the opportunity to wash me as well, and while he was crouching, he also took the opportunity to orally pleasure me. We then continued to rinse ourselves off before drying off and getting dressed for the day.

I had small plans for us that morning. I knew he’d be thrilled to take a ride on the bike. It was a gorgeous day outside, and I also knew a money saving breakfast would also be welcomed. I used all my eggs the day before, and the only real option I had left was cereal. I had a Living Social deal to use up at Sonic. What a perfect way to use it. It was a five-minute ride away, and it would be nearly free.

We hopped on the bike and off we went. We ordered our breakfast and sat. While we waited for the food to arrive, he asked if it was alright that he call his mother back. She’d been calling periodically over the weekend. They talked about his apartment search. He also mentioned me by name and told her how amazing I am, especially since I cook. I was shocked. He’d already been talking to his mother about me!? What else did he tell her about me? His mother put his nephew on the phone and they chatted for a minute. It was incredibly adorable. I was so turned on seeing his reaction to talking to his nephew.

When the food arrived, he hung up and ate. We shared our ice creams, feeding each other periodic spoonfuls. While we ate, he shared his tweeted comment on his Foursquare check-in with me: “Meal: cost-effective + tasty, but the company I keep: priceless + delicious.” He got a phone call from his friend who was just released from the hospital. After more than a few times of trying to end the conversation he was finally successful. His whole mood changed. When we finished eating, we stood, and he said, ”So I wanted to fully discuss what it was I said I wanted to chat with you about.” I was under the impression we’d already done that. Now, I was worried.

“I really enjoy spending all this time with you. You’re amazing. I really enjoy being with you. And, if I had to put a label on it, I’d say we’re dating. That being said, I think we should still be able to date other people. And, I should recognize you probably noticed I blocked you on Grindr, and that was by design. It’s a policy I have because if you try to call me, and I don’t pick up. Maybe you see me on Grindr and your mind will start to come up with scenarios.” At this point I acknowledged my awareness of this and told him how I felt about it. He continued, “I’ve done it, I’m sure other do too. And, I also should tell you, there’s a friend I’ve also been seeing since the beginning of the year. We see each other about once a month, go out to dinner, and then, well, we’ve done more than friends things.” I stood there not speaking through this whole thing. I just listened and nodded in my own confusion. “This is only going to work if we have communication and are honest with each other. I just wanted you to know,” he added.

I thanked him for his honesty, and he added, “Once again, please just be patient with me.” I assured him I was in no rush. Again, I had no idea where this was coming from.

He then pointed out how one of his loyal followers liked his comment on Twitter. He explained to me how he was kinda a hero on Twitter. He’d received comments from guys who found the confidence to change their lives based on some of the things he’s said. This was my moment. I told him I had a similar situation, and I had a secret I was waiting until the right time to tell him about it. I explained how I had a blog and received emails of a similar nature. I told him one day I’d share my alter ego with him, but it was like reading my diary, so not just yet. He seemed to be happy about the idea and accepting of my delayed full explanation.

I was still a little taken back by what he said. Part of me appreciated the honesty and part of me was confused by it all. Regardless, we hopped on the motorcycle, and I dropped him off at the PATH to head home. As I said goodbye, I told him to call me later to tell me how the search went. I didn’t think too much about what he said the rest of the day. There would be plenty of time for all that.

That night, as I was climbing into bed, I got a text from CK: “Are you awake?” Seconds after replying, the phone rang. He did call as he promised. I’d begun to think he’d forgotten. He really just called to say goodnight. He’d fallen asleep and napped most of the evening. He was tired and ready for bed as well.  I told him, “Now I will be going to bed with a smile on my face.” He replied, “Aww, baby, that’s sweet! Me too. Sweet dreams!” With that, I laid my head on the pillow with a smile across my face.

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