Being a lesbian, sometimes I have to stop and think how lucky I am. After all, many gays and lesbians have been ostracized from their families, friends, and sometimes even employers. I have none of these problems. My family and my in laws both respect my marriage immensely. Let me tell you a family story for the ages.
Visiting my mother and father in laws home is always a pleasant experience. Eating, playing lotto tickets and hanging out with my partners six year old nephew is all that is ever really required of us. None of these things are especially taxing, and we like to help out where we can.
Helping out would be my undoing. Hearing my mother in law say that she needed some things dragged from the shed last summer, we eagerly jumped up to help. Walking out in the yard, pondering how we were going to remove the old artificial Christmas tree was the only thing on our minds.
My partner started trying to get the Christmas tree with a rake, but unable to budge it, I took over. As I tugged and pulled, Dana heard a scuttling sound. She wisely suggested that I stop. However, being the obstinate ass that I am, I pressed on. Tugging with rake, grumbling under my breath in ninety degree heat, I was determined to get that tree out!
Before I knew what was happening, there was a squirrel flying toward me, launching itself from my head. This was the sum of my worst fears. Convinced it was going to bite me, give me rabies and require those nasty shots, I began to scream. Dropping to the ground, I called that squirrel every name in the book. At the very top of my voice.
Let it be said that my mother in law doesn’t really care for certain profanities, and I figured she wasn’t going to be to happy about this. My partner and her father were both standing over as I lay on the ground muttering about the stupid squirrel and the rabies. Certain that my mother in law was about to pop out and start in about the language I had used, I decided to beat her to the punch.
Going inside and relaying the story was kind of interesting. The woman looked at me, and laughed. And laughed, and laughed and laughed. The next thing I know, she is spreading the story on to other family members. Completely unharmed, I decide to go with it. I tell the story as well, only in my version the squirrel is the size of a fox.
Relationships with in laws can be complicated, fun and interesting situations. This story about the squirrel from hell is a prime example of why I love my in laws. That day, I finally was able to get into step with these people. Having done something useful, having it go terribly awry seems to be the trend in this family. But, whatever the trend, they’re as much my family now as my own.