Finding love has not been an easy thing for me. I’ve spent so much time having meaningless sex that I think I’ve missed out on a few good guys. In fact, I’ve only really let two guys get close to me and they both hurt me.
Pollo is what I called him. I guess in hindsight, calling him chicken told his whole story. His real name was Raul Rivera and I loved him deeply. It was the summer of 2003 and I met him in Highland Park while cruising for sex. I remember that day like it was yesterday. I was walking around the track when this tall, thin, young man turned the corner. It was an instant attraction. He was talking on his phone and when he got close, I stopped him to ask the time.
Once we started, it was hot and heavy. There is nothing like regularly scheduled sex. It wasn’t hit or miss like before. He was the only person I needed and I felt loved. To be in the arms of someone you think you love is a great feeling. Yes, I said, “think you love.” I thought I loved “Juan.” That’s what he told me his name was initially. It was the first of many lies. See, the person I was in love with was a fantasy.
Let’s talk about being “In Love.” In love is a thing I wish to never be in again; because if you’re in it, then you can fall out of it. There is nothing unconditional about being “In Love.” It is the type of feeling that can easily change. I want to love and be loved without condition, without fault. Juan was full of conditions and fault.
There is nothing like someone calling you up saying that your lover is a liar and a cheat. After about a year of wonderful feelings, the hammer dropped. Some guy called me about sleeping with his boyfriend Raul. I was like, who is Raul? He was also Juan. He was also younger than he told me. He was double dipping and it wasn’t cool. This guy on the phone knew where I lived, knew about days we had been together. He was like a gay Batman! He also told me intimate details that a person who is sleeping with someone would know. My world just got turned upside down.
I just fell out of love for the first time in my life. I imagine it to be like jumping out a plane and your parachute doesn’t work. Splat!!! I was hurt. How could I be so blind? That was by choice. I saw signs that he may have been lying about certain things but I wanted to be “In Love” so I ignored them. Stuff you ignore generally always comes back to slap you in the face. The lesson I learned, “Do sweat the small stuff but don’t completely dismiss it either.” What hurt the most was the fact that I loved him so much that I came out to my friends. I loved him so much that it couldn’t be a secret I’d continue to carry. The world had to know. On the other side I’m grateful that I finally was able to stop hiding.