Two elders from my fathers side of the family came to visit us from Spain. They were distant cousins of my grandparents and one of them was my fathers godmother. They’re visiting there children who resides somewhere in San Jose and they’ve been wanting to see my father and the family. So dinner was set to accomodate their request.
Everybody said they’re coming, except for my mother; who refuse to participate. I was asked by Dad to convince Mom to join us for dinner. But looks like NO was the final answer. I guess my mother’s not fond of these two, bad history as Mom would call it. Them not liking my Mom for my Dad, and some old aversion that never had any closure. Add to that, an occassion when they addressed my Mom as lahing katulong, even spreading rumors of her family background. Beleive me, these are all true! For a while I thought I was watching or listening to a soap opera. Talk about mega drama in the family.
Anyhow, the show must go on without my mother. Dad asked me to come early to help him clean the house and set up the dinner table; and I willingly took the task. My father might be a man of many talents, but cleaning and decorating is not his forte. He prefers the typical macho jobs, claiming that domestic chores is out of his league.
At 8 pm, dinner was all set up and ready. The couple who requested that I call them, Lola Inez and Lolo Federico, came about fifteen minutes after. The timing couldn’t more perfect, everyone was hungry and the food was still warm. The two appeared to be very warm people, they we’re talking as if they’ve known us for years. I couldn’t recall the last time I saw them, but their faces were relatively familiar.
While having dinner, conversations started gracing our table, here goes:
“Rudy, where’s your wife? Si Lorna, dba?” Lola Inez asked my Dad. No wonder my mom changed her name, I could not bear calling my parents Rudy & Lorna. Like that couple in show business!
“Ninang, matagal na po kaming divorce.” My Dad humbly said.
“But they’re good friends naman po, Lola!” I added, my Dad was slightly turned pale.
“Ikaw, nasaan ang asawa mo? Huwag mong sabihin na wala pa. Ilang taon ka na nga ba?” Lola Inez then turned the question on to me.
“Ay, wala pa nga po. Wala pang nagkamali.” I was trying to shy away from the conversation.
” Ay naku, Lola. You see, Kuya Nell is gay! The odds of him marrying is totally zero.” My sister said, without even thinking.
“Ahhh, I see.” That was all our Lola Inez has said.
I don’t know exactly how the couple felt about this whole revelation, but there was silence for a brief moment. Dad interrupted and tried to keep up the conversation by asking them about their grown children. I then excused myself to get the dessert in the kitchen. Whoah! I had drink a full glass of water just to get a hold myself. My sister can be annoyingly indiscreet sometimes. But what’s said is said and done.
Don’t get me wrong, but I am not embarrassed of my sexuality. I just don’t think these two people would perceive this as good or bad. And from my mothers story, I don’t want to be a subject of mockery for them. But like I said, things have been said and done. There really is nothing I can do on my end to stop any prejudgement they have of me. Now I know what it means when people say — Can’t live with them. Can’t live without them, about their families.