After a late afternoon flight from Limoges Airport to London Stansted, my ex-wife was sweet enough to meet me at the airport. We drove back to her house where I would be staying before traveling to visit my daughter.
Part of the visit was a Christmas present from my ex – tickets to see Joe Bonamassa at the Royal Albert Hall in West London with her and my daughter. After an hour by train, we arrived at the 5,000 plus capacity venue, and we found my daughter with just enough time to grab a drink to take to our seats. What a great concert — ten guitar changes, six great musicians, and two superb background vocalists. It was truly a night to remember!
On Saturday, I set off on a two hour drive to stay with my daughter. I arrived early that afternoon, and she quickly suggested that we go meet a couple of her friends at a bar nearby. They happened to be a couple of gay men with whom we had a lot of laughs. We also enjoyed a few drinks on a sunny terrace above a restaurant on the local high street.
The visit had started well and was very enjoyable. However, I was much in doubt of the trip immediately prior to my departure. A few days before my trip to the United Kingdom, I had chatted with my daughter one day during her lunch break. It got a little mixed up and she became rather upset. We agreed to continue when she got back home that evening. While I had been intending to come out to my daughter during my visit, the situation had suddenly changed lanes! I quickly came to the conclusion that I needed to tell her that evening, if only to ease the tension that I had created inadvertently.
That afternoon, I uploaded some of my selfies as Sophie for my daughter to view that evening. I wanted my daughter to know that Sophie was not just me playing about with some urge, but rather was something serious for me. We agreed that she would send a message to my phone to let me know that she was free. My heart began to beat faster and my hands trembled when my phone signaled that a message had arrived. I took a very deep breath and dialed my daughter’s number. I could hardly speak and had difficulty swallowing. The words came out slowly and awkwardly. I explained that I had uploaded some photos at which she needed to look before we could to talk in depth – so began another tense period.
The waiting was unbearable; it felt like forever. Would my daughter call me back or would it be weeks before I heard from her again? Would she want to talk about Sophie or would I be on the receiving end of a tirade? At this point, I did not know what to expect; every possible iteration went through my mind. I was driving myself crazy with anticipation and fear. Then the wait was over as my phone signaled that another message had arrived.
The message read, “I still love you, dad!”.