Did I mention he was 21 years older than I was? And his parents lived in upstate New York and never ever traveled? And he had 5 kids? But, it was his parents who were the show stopper on the living together. Shudda been a sign, you say? One of many many many. He suggested that instead of living together, we get married. I said ok. It was just that passionate. And thought through. And doomed from the get go.
His kids were 14-27. (I was 31.) 3 boys and the two oldest were girls. The youngest thought I was a kick. The two girls thought I'd stolen their father from their mother (from whom he had been divorced for a decade). It was one big happy family. Actually the boys lived with us on and off. And while they were not so much a big deal, decisions that Bob would make or not make 'because of the children' were a problem. One of many. He wanted a wife - someone who would cook his pork chops and peas and potatoes that he wanted every single night for dinner. Someone to clean and keep house. I actually wanted that, too.
We were both adults and had lived on our own for a while and knew the best way to do things and our ways were very different. When we didn't clash, we didn't connect either. He was a lot nicer than I was/am. Not as nice as this piece his friend wrote in the Observer when he died a few years ago made him sound but nice enough.
His obit has his details.
We carried on our mostly separate lives for 2 years and a couple of months. I felt like I had made my bed and was stuck in it forever. Until New Years Day when we came home from a party and were getting ready to watch the news on TV and he said "Probably we should just give up, don't ya think?" I heard the bells of freedom.
I wallowed in my singleness for several glorious years. I had only gay friends. I worked hard. I got my tubes tied (in case singleness ever wore off).
And then I started what would be a 5 year affair with a guy who, for some of that time, was married. Not my finest hour. But, then -foreshadowing - none of my romantic relationships turned out to be my finest hour.
To Be Continued