The Ghost In The Crowd

Beau's picture

Today was an interesting day for me, good and a bit weird.

School's been back for a week now and I ran into Nick, one of my friends that I haven't seen since the last day of school a few months ago. He's one of the two friends that didn't respond back to me about the text mom send outing me and Colin.

Nick and I don't have any classes together and have different lunch times so we never really cross paths, and unfortunately it's the same with Colin too. At least we get to hang out before school and at Cross Country practice.

Right after the last period Nick came up to me and didn't say anything, he just looked at me. I said hi, asked him how his summer was, how he'd been the last few months. He talked to me slowly, like he was translating in his mind what he wanted to say from a foreign language.

I'm sorry...I should have come over...I'm just're so...normal. You know how many girls want you???

I've heard that a lot lately.

I asked him if we were still friends and he told me "always" and then told me to "beat the clock!" at our first CC meet that was going to start in a short bit.

After talking with Nick I felt better, and wasn't as nervous about my first meet. Colin and I changed next to each other, using lockers in the back of the locker room. Everyone on CC knows we're gay and we change a bit away from the others just so they know we're not checking them out. Really, I don't think they even care.

Colin and I massage each others legs before practices which helps loosen up up, and we stretch together. At first the other teammates just looked at us funny, but now they don't care. We never talk about anything gay at practice, we just become a part of the team and we take it seriously.

My school's CC course is considered one of the toughest of the schools we compete against, and it's a bit of an advantage for us since we know it well. Pacing is a huge part of CC and something I have a long way to improve on, but I'm getting better.

I ended up with a time of just over 20 minutes, and Colin was just under 22. Not winning times but still not horrible, and our coach really wants us to gradually improve, and build our endurance up.

At the finish line my dad was on one side cheering me and Colin on, and I got a brief glimpse of my mom on the other side. I knew it was her, she had on the same sunglasses and tennis visor we always wears, her phone in her hand. Her face was blank, at least as far as I could tell from the split second I saw her.

After each team member crosses the finish line we meet up to get our official times coach, and then one everyone is finished we have a brief team meeting and rehydrate.

Dad was waiting for me, and I looked around for mom but she was gone. After practices and meets he picks up Colin and I up, we go to my room to expend some sperm and then shower together, and then Colin walks home. Dad didn't say anything about mom being there on the ride home, but after Colin left he came to my room and asked me if I wanted to go get pizza for dinner? I was starving so you know the answer!

We talked about the meet on the drive to the restaurant, and I talked about how I wanted to improve my pacing, especially going uphill. That's my weak point, and a common one too.

I waited and waited for dad to say something about mom being there but he didn't, and I started to wonder if it was maybe wishful thinking on my part? Maybe I was just imagining her being there.

Then I got a text message from an unknown phone number and there was a photo attached, and it was also sent to dad's phone number.

The picture was of me about the cross the finish line, and in the message space were 5 exclamation points. Nothing else.

Dad held up his phone so I could see that he got the same message and picture, and I struggled to hold the tears back. Dad wiped my eyes gently with a napkin and told me to give her time, just give her time.

I didn't hold back the tears at home, and dad held me like he has done so many times lately. I sent the message and picture to Colin and my brother Michael, and Colin replied that he thought he had seen her there was wasn't sure.

My brother replied that he was proud of me, and that he was glad that mom and dad were there for me.

I have hope now, not sure how much, but at least I have that.



Roamer's picture

It's great that your Mom was

It's great that your Mom was there at your CC meet, so maybe in the future she'll reach out to you. I feel for you here, I haven't written about my Dad in my journals yet but there's rejection from him that I have to deal with.

I'm amazed at your patience with her, but based on how you write about your family I'm not too surprised either.

In some ways it's good that you and Colin don't see each other much at school, after school you can catch up and each of you gets to experience different friends. Are you two still doing debate?

Rubbing each others legs before CC? Wow...that's brave dude!!! May want to do that in private?

I really hope things get better for you, but I also think you're preparing yourself for it going south too?


jeff's picture

Sounds like...

... she's trying to come to terms with everything. Best to give her space and let her figure things out.

"You don't know you're beautiful." - Harry Styles