Well, tonight, Gus finally did it – He brought Noah over for dinner, and introduced him to us.
Up until now, he’d been nothing but a name…
“Who are you texting?” “Oh, just Noah.”
“Where are you going?” “Didn’t I tell you? Noah and I are going to the movies.”
“You sure spend a lot of time with this ‘Noah’… Are you two…?” “Oh my God. Bye, Papa!”
I guess Colette and I badgered him about it a bit more than we should have. And I never wanted to be nosy or anything by asking about him… I guess I was just curious. How the heck am I supposed to recognize the line between ‘friend’ and ‘boyfriend’ anyway? I mean, this whole… ‘dating other guys’ thing is just as new to me as it is to him. Is there like, a protocol or something?
I don’t know. I haven’t had to deal with any of my kids dating in a long time. Jocelyne never started dating until college, and Lucas hasn’t had a steady girlfriend since he was seventeen, until Hazel came along. Guess I’m out of practice.
Anyway, when he told us he was inviting Noah over for dinner, that was when I was sure he’d crossed the line out of ‘friend’ territory. And I won’t lie… I was really nervous to meet him. More nervous than I’ve ever been meeting someone one of my kids is dating. What if I said the wrong thing? What if I offended him? What if they held hands or kissed or something and I got all weird about it and ruined everything?
I probably sound like a terrified kid right now… Because that’s basically what I turned into tonight.
But in the end, I had nothing to worry about.
Noah was one of the most polite kids I think I’ve ever met… He insisted on calling Lettie and I “Mr. and Mrs. Rosebrook” and Mama and Papa “Mr. and Mrs. Klein”, no matter how many times we told him he didn’t have to. And before we’d even finished eating, he’d already offered to help clear the table and rinse off the dishes too.
And it was great getting to know a little bit about him. Noah’s on the student council with Gus, and even plays on the football team too. I was shocked Gus had never mentioned it before! Noah had so many questions for me about back when I used to play. It was nice reminiscing a little bit… I even got nostalgic enough to bring him upstairs and give him a peek at my trophy case.
Noah’s a great kid. A really great kid.
But you know the best part about him?
The way he looked at my son. And the way my son looked at him too.
So yes, maybe I did appreciate that they waited until they thought we weren’t looking to sneak in a little PDA. And yes, it felt a little… uncomfortable to catch a glimpse of that.
But the bottom line is, Gus is happy. Maybe happier than I’ve ever seen him. You can almost feel the joy radiating from him, every second he and Noah are together.
How can I be anything but grateful for that?