“Oh, I’ve heard about that happening.”

An unexpected (and unforgettable) end of story.

A couple of weekends ago I went to visit my Mom. My sister arrived unexpectedly a short time later with her grandson, who is eight years old. Figuring the last thing the little guy wanted to do on a summer afternoon was to sit indoors with three older women, I said, “Let’s walk to the convenience store at the gas station, it’s only three blocks away, I’ll buy you a candy bar.”

My niece's son...
He gave me hope for the future. 
We trundled off talking about candy and as we passed the elementary school a block away, he asked, “How old are you?” Hum, I thought to myself, I wonder why he wants to know my age? “I’m sixty-seven, almost sixty-eight,” I replied.

“Oh, then you’re older than my dad. He’s fifty-one,” he remarked.

Then he asked, “Do you have any children?”

At this point, I realized I had never spoken to my niece, his mother, about how much and how soon he should be informed about my ‘real’ position in the family tree. I concluded I would answer him honestly and hope for the best. (He’s only known me as “Auntie” Lisa; he was born after I transitioned.)

“Well, yes, I do. They are your three uncles,” and proceeded to name them.

He looked puzzled. “But I thought Granny was their mom!” he exclaimed, referring to my ex-wife.

“Yes,” I said, “She’s their mom, and I’m their dad.”

I knew I had crossed a line and was preparing myself for what might happen next, that I would have to go into a carefully worded explanation of what I had just revealed to him.

After a couple of seconds of silence as he pondered my answer, he shrugged his shoulders and said, “Oh, I’ve heard of that happening.”

End of story. Next subject.

We went back to talking about his favorite brand of candy bar.


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