August 2017 brought another reunion with Matthew and his family. It had been over a year since the previous one.
Of course, we had been corresponding via email through the year, sharing birthday and holiday greetings.
Once again, I traveled to the city area where Matthew and his family live. It was a good opportunity to combine with my attendance at a professional event on the same weekend.
Bio Dad offered to drive me around from my hotel to the planned meeting spot in a gigantic shopping centre. That was a welcome gesture since I don’t know my way around the outskirts of the big city, nor do I drive.
I got to ride in a car with no air conditioning on a hot, humid day. Adding to that, there was a dog in the back seat, panting and slobbering on my left sleeve as I blocked its attempts at jumping into the front while we drove along the busy, noisy freeway. The dog was used to sitting in the front. The dog was an unexpected attendee at this event since Bio Dad could not find a sitter.
We had to adjust our plans for lunch, walks and catch-ups with Matthew’s family.
We sought shade beside a shopping mall parking lot. I was overwhelmed by the enormous size of the mall and crowds of people milling, rushing about. It provided cosmic confusion outside our little gathering, as we clustered around our beautiful son.
We staked out that little patch of ground in the shade, near a faux pond. We took turns accompanying the children into the mall to get fast food take out lunches, drinks for our group, water for the dog and for pee breaks.
We adjusted our plans. We could call it an agile approach to family reunions.
A bench in the shade of a green strip in a mall parking lot
The partially trained dog constantly demanded attention, attempted to and succeeded jumping into the faux water pond. It provided ample entertainment for the children.
I brought gifts for everyone. We took plenty of pictures to capture the event as we made new memories, inching closer to Matthew’s heart and family.
On that hot, sticky day, I also mentioned to Matthew that he seemed to have inherited my fair skin type and would need to be careful in the sun. He responded that it was not a problem since he spends most of his time indoors. Ah, big city folk.
I shared with the group that I did some stupid things as a teenager… one of them was spending too much time in the sun, at the beach, trying to get a tan like my friends but getting burned instead. In my later years, I don’t want to be a poster child for Melanoma.
I wished we could spend more time together, chatting, walking and engaging the children. They were getting tired and cranky. I was getting tired and cranky. It was just too hot and I was concerned about making it to the airport in time for my flight home.
One of the humorous conversations of the afternoon was when Matthew’s wife asked me privately if Bio Dad and I were dating. No, I snorted. We have a history but I was unsure of any future I would have with him. We have different interests, different lifestyles.
He has dogs. I have cats.
At times giving in to romantic notions, I had “what if” thoughts. I am just too comfortable with my independent, solitary life. Also, I don’t want to get burned again.
Permit me to present you with this timely music video.
Frankly, I found the lyrics repetitive and annoying. When I watched the video, the first thing that came to my mind was “Those curtains and those candles could be a fire hazard!” I scoff at the hopeless romantics.
Thanks for dropping by and following along. May your post-adoption searches and reunions be successful, smooth and comfortable.