for everything a season
Blogs are funny things. We post stuff out here on the internet we want people to know, sometimes news about our businesses (in my case art and theatre), and sometimes musings about our lives. I think the performer in me finds it much easier to address an audience than the introvert in me finds it to talk one-on-one.
Anyone who has known me for any length of time knows I’ve been married for over three decades to a wonderful woman who started out as the best friend I’ve ever had. We have had great times, we’ve had some terrible times, we’ve achieved some wonderful things together, and when we worked as a team, we were nearly unstoppable. We’ve seen each other through loss and heartbreak, and more challenges than are believable. We have never stopped loving each other, never stopped being friends, although this last decade has heaped trials piled on crises on us that have taken their toll. And in the midst of that, sometimes when faced with choices of monumental importance and consequence, and life and death is on the line again and again, communication breaks down, questions go unanswered, and frustration gives way to anger and resentment until all you want to do is what’s necessary to restore peace and good will. It stopped working a long time ago, my friends, and the last several years my role has become one of caregiver. I am exhausted and without reserve, having my own physical challenges as well. Throughout the long battle of fighting for assistance and benefits, it was in her best interest for us to remain legally married. But that season is coming to a close. I will say Sheri Roberts Tennant has my undying admiration for her amazing strength, tenacity, determination, and spirit in the face of devastating circumstances, and an unfailing sense of humor that has always been able to make me laugh like no other. I am grateful for our two daughters, and the incredible work Sheri did for their health and welfare when these babies came into our home. I know I am blessed always by her steadfast love.
Life is a journey. I have been blessed by the doors that have opened, the faith to step through some of those doors that have done much to preserve my sanity in times of despair, and I have been so richly blessed these last half dozen or so years with new family and friends who have known my truth and have shown me love and acceptance and celebration.
So this post is mostly for those I share history with. We share memories and traditions, but in most cases we don’t share intimate knowledge of our stories. This last ten years or so, you don’t know my scars of keeping solitary vigil, shepherding my family through numerous tragedies, midnight flights to hospitals, being stretched much too thin for far too long. And beyond that, you don’t know much about where I came from, the experiences that shaped me, the trials I’ve faced, the shame I bore, the secrets I tried to hide, the depths of my despair, and the triumphs I’ve won. Where I’ve been is who I am. And at this time in my life as a courtesy, I will offer you my new starting point. I am the gay man I have always been, I believe in the force that binds all creation that I identify as the Maker, the Great Artist, the Great Scientist, God, who orchestrated me to be exactly as I am, imbued with love to care for those who have needed me.
“We live in between the people we will become and those we used to be,
and in the meantime how we struggle with how different you are from me.
And far away from disappointed ghosts and fears of what will come,
all we’re left with is this moment, in the hollow of the Maker’s hand.”
If there is one thing I’ve learned from the 3 girls who have been and will always be my family, not from blood but in love: Life is precious, and fragile. I have helped each one of them to cheat Death and live, more than once. I have few regrets, but I know the past is done, I may never have the future, and what is left is this moment, that I will live in truth, in the hollow of my Maker’s hand.