Some of you may remember a post I did last year about a gay couple being harassed in my local Starbucks by some not so nice individuals. If you didn't read it, you can click HERE to catch up.
For those of you who did read that post, I have some wonderful news to share with you. Saturday night I was invited to a get-together by Tim and Ryan (aka my Starbucks boys). Dan, his boyfriend Tyler, and myself ended up at a restaurant overlooking Lake Michigan with an entire crew of people (seriously one of the prettiest views ever). The reservation took the staff a bit to get situated, as Ryan had booked the deck for us and they had to rearrange a lot of tables to seat us all .
I knew something was going on because Ryan looked nervous as all get out. In the short time we've been friends I've never seen him that quiet. He's usually the one to start conversation, crack jokes, and bring Tim out of his shell. So, to see both of them quiet across from me, I knew Ryan was hiding something. I didn't say anything. I just figured he was having an off day. He had just gotten off of work and was probably tired, I thought.
Fast forward to half an hour later and we're seated out on the deck. The water is gorgeous. It's almost seven, so the sun is going down and the restaurant turns on their little twinkle lights. I'm kind of wishing my boyfriend was there at that point because he would've really liked it. It was very romantic. Everyone is drinking wine, chatting it up, and then there's me. I'm watching Ryan. He's still not with the conversation and even Tim is trying to get him involved. Talk about a role reversal.
By the time our appetizers had arrived, everyone seemed to notice how silent Ryan was. Some people prodded him a bit. He said he was fine, just tired. And then a waiter asked Ryan where he wanted to put our three guests that had just arrived. Ryan looked like a deer in the headlights. Tim looked confused, and asked Ryan who else was supposed to be coming. We all watched Ryan direct the waitress around him, insisting the chairs be put next to Tim.
Tim's face was priceless (not really at the time, but after the three guests arrived and we understood). He almost seemed pissed that Ryan would put strangers next to him. But they weren't strangers at all. Not by a long shot.
This is the part where you might want to stop and grab a tissue. I'm dead serious. I balled.
Okay, are you ready for the next part? *baby squee*
An older man and woman walked out of the restaurant, followed by another woman, maybe mid-twenties. Tim immediately gets up from his chair. He's very emotional upon seeing these people. I'm like what? What is happening! Hushed silence, people. You could have heard a pin drop.
Tim stays put, still standing by his chair. Ryan gets a little teary and holds Tim's hand until the older woman pulls him close and hugs the ever loving crap out of him. It's immediately clear this woman is family. No one hugs you like that except for your grandmother. She pulls off her little glasses, wiping them on her shirt because she's crying. The older man steps in and gives Tim a hug also. He finishes with a manly clap on the back because he's trying to keep his tears in check.
But when the younger woman approaches Tim, he loses it. Hell, we all lost it. We didn't even know what was really happening and we're all having a total Oprah-style meltdown. Tim releases the young woman and turns to us. He explains that this is his older sister, Kaylie, who he hasn't talked to since he came out a year ago, and the couple are his grandparents from Florida, who he hasn't seen in almost a year and a half.
After further conversation, once they've sat down, Ryan reveals that he personally paid for them to fly up that weekend, so Tim could have family present for this particular occasion. You see, Tim was kicked out of his house and for lack of a better word, disowned by his parents and siblings for being gay. So, to have Kaylie sitting next to him was a HUGE deal.
AND THEN.... ZOMG. Yes, I put a damn Z in there.
Ryan stands up and takes Tim's hand before getting down on one knee. ZOMG X2. Now I'm paraphrasing here, but basically Ryan said that even though they're young and haven't really lived yet, he didn't want to take another step without giving Tim the commitment he needed to keep going. He didn't want Tim to just be his boyfriend, he wanted him to be his everything. (I totally remembered that part because I was like hell yes I'm putting that in a story! AWWWWW)
He said he wanted to have Tim's family present because he wanted them all to know that just because they were two men in a relationship, that it didn't mean they weren't in it for real like every other couple that wanted to be something for each other. Ryan said that even though Michigan didn't accept gay marriage right now, he wanted to offer Tim a true commitment and promise that he would always love him. Ryan said that with time he was hopeful Michigan would allow them to the same rights as everyone else. But for now, this was all he could offer and he wanted to offer it with all of his heart.
He presented Tim with a tiny white gold band and slipped it on his finger. I thought the deck would collapse when everyone jumped up from their chairs with applause and cheers. The grandparents were a mess - Grandpa totally lost it. And Kaylie warmly embraced her brother after Ryan was finished with him. You could tell it meant the world to Tim to have Kaylie there, hugging him like it didn't disgust her, but rather that they both needed it.
*long sigh of satisfaction*
As it now stands, Tim and Ryan are engaged to be committed. :D We're not sure on the official details, but there has been talk of a fall ceremony. Now I know it's not legal in the eyes of the state, but really, who the fuck cares? I'm just so happy for them. I'm happy Tim was able to reunite with his sister, after a lot of talking with Ryan. I'm happy Tim got to be with his grandparents, even though their daughter (Tim's mother) refuses to speak to him. He needed that. He needed a little bit of reassurance and love from his family, and his new family, Ryan. He needed his friends with him to share in the moment.
I don't think I've ever seen him smile like that. It was one of those moments that restored your faith in humanity and made you want to show the ones you love how much you really cared. So, Dan and I wanted to give them something else because they are one of those couples that deserve anything you have to give.
I've mentioned before how Dan and me bought a foreclosure property last summer. With the help of a lot of family and friends, we renovated it and put it up for rent the same summer. The second week of July our current tenant will be moving out to take a job in California. I'm happy to say that Tim and Ryan have agreed to move in, leaving their tiny apartment behind to start the next step in their journey.
I'm very excited about all of this. Call it a bit of summer magic, or whatever you like, but this was one of those once in a lifetime moments that I'll remember forever.
So, to Ryan and Tim, you have my most heartfelt congratulations. <3
To the state of Michigan, you need to get with the program because we have one hella fabulous wedding to plan.
And to all of you, I hope you listened to me about the tissues. lol
Love you all,