Friday, May 16, 2014

We Used to Have Nicknames

Under a remarkably brilliant blue sky, I drove from Raleigh to Pinehurst, in an off-white Fiat that I had just rented from a young and uncomfortably happy Enterprise employee.  I was on my way to visit my parents who were enjoying an early spring at their condo in North Carolina.  I felt slightly nervous and a little sad as I was about to spend three days with them at a very conservative golf resort for the first time openly as a transgender woman, and teary-eyed, as I recalled one of my first visits to the Tar Heel State in 1992, with my then girl friend, future partner, and now ex. 

While I was apprehensive about the visit, I desperately needed some of my mom’s nurturing optimism and my dad’s predictability.  It hadn’t occurred to me when planning this trip that what I really needed was to get away.  Not just get away from my job and commitments, but also to get away from the sadness I was feeling.  My ex partner and I had separated nearly four years ago, and were divorced in two years later after being married for seventeen, yet we continued to live together until last month.  So after twenty-two years, we were no longer roommates.