From the moment we stepped into Gerry's mother's place, he became a different person. His sister was the first to greet us because she was the one to answer the door. That greeting went normal, nothing unusual. It wasn't until after we walked in and followed her into the living room where everybody was gathered that it happened.
They saw Gerry and all started whooping. According to Gerry he hadn't been home in almost 8 years though he'd seen his brother about 4 years ago when he came to Dallas. So some of these people stand and head towards us to hug him, among them some distant relative, it's when Gerry hugs that person that the change comes on. He speaks in Spanish! Not only am I hearing Gerry speak Spanish, he's doing so in their accent!! I'm all like wtf???
I've known this man for four years. The first two as our neighbor, the last two in a more personal level. Never once had I heard him utter a word in Spanish, nor has he ever mentioned that he speaks it. And of course the opportunity to do so has come up plenty of times. I speak it, I do so when I'm with my relatives or on the phone with them. (Actually I tend to do the Spanglish thing, but still...)
All the while we were there he acted totally different. More down to earth. He's usually uptight, intense and all business even at home with me. He like never lets his guard down. On the job yes I can see that, but no, it's all the time.
We didn't stay long at his mom's. We only stayed long enough to eat. From there we went and spent our weekend alone somewhere else.
Once we left that house though, I had already made up my mind that I wouldn't bring up this transformation because it most likely could end up in some kind of fight. He brought it up. He said he and I were more alike than I probably knew. How so I asked. He said many years ago, like me, he was ashamed of where he came from. Once he left for college he never looked back and that for many years he stayed away from them. He said during his entire marriage to ex he probably saw them 4 times. They hadn't even been invited to that wedding. He was too embarrassed to admit that he came from those people. Wow.....I mentioned that my therapist says it's 'self hate' that makes me racist against my own kind. He said he wasn't racist against anybody he just hated the fact that he wasn't from the 'right' people, but that he's made his peace with that long ago. He says he can now be thankful of where he came from because it's made him who he is today. THAT sounds a lot like my sister. She doesn't hate our parents the way I do.
This trip did something for us though. I don't know if it's going to be a good thing or not. It brought Gerry down a couple of notches in my eyes. No longer is he this perfect guy. I used to think (as I did with others before him) why would this guy even want me? Aside from the fact I'm young and he enjoys showing me off to his coworker buddies (and I'm shallow enough to get off on it.) No, Gerry is pretty much like me (sadly). Except he has a great job and he's not an alcoholic.
I think I can be myself from now on and still have him. I have't felt that since Jack.
I just might be ok after all AND I've been sober for a good while now.