By: Heather Somaini
Introductions. They’re so tricky. Who says what first? Who makes the first move? This time it will be me introducing myself to you and then eventually, to my family. It may be a slow process but that’s how we got here – slowly, on a road with lots of curves, bumps and hills along with a few very steep “downs”. I’m 41, live in Los Angeles not too far from the Santa Monica airport with my partner/wife/better-half and our 3 year-old twins. The kids have recently finished their first year of pre-school and are valiantly trying to be accident free since fully removing all diapers from our house a few weeks ago. That’s where we are today but 8.5 years ago was a totally different story.
8.5 years ago I had recently moved back to Los Angeles after an 18-month stint in San Francisco. It was fun up north but I like the energy of LA better. I was recently single and a friend had suggested online dating. Now online dating wasn’t the same then. Let’s be honest; it was for people who couldn’t attract someone at a club or at a party, but I was willing to give it a try – yeah, I was desperate. Tere responded to my ad along with what seemed like a million other women. You see, I had been posted on the site’s home page as their “lesbian of the month” kind of deal. My family and friends referred to me as the poster child for lonely lesbians. Yep, that was me. Tere’s email was snarky. She sounded smart – I’m a sucker for smart. It was just before Christmas and our travel plans did not allow for a meeting before the holidays. We talked on the phone incessantly – with incredible cell phone bills to boot.
On Christmas Eve, Tere suggested that she fly up to San Francisco for a drink later in the week once she returned from her travels. I was there celebrating our newest family member, my niece. My little brother had beaten me to producing a grandchild for my parents and I didn’t even have a girlfriend! I wasn’t sure what to do with Tere. She seemed awesome on the phone but we all know that everything can change when you meet someone in person. I reluctantly agreed to “the drink” but with the caveat that I wanted my parents’ approval since I was their primary companion while in SF. My parents suggested that Tere and I have dinner with them. Tere agreed. I was hip deep and a little worried. During Christmas dinner both my Mom and I enjoyed a little champagne and by dessert we were both a bit giggly. Tere was back in LA visiting friends. She called and I was trying to be inconspicuous behind a column while chatting with her. My Mom found me and taunted Tere with claims that she was fearful to come up and meet them. Tere suggested she fly up NOW as she was driving past the Orange County airport. In my slightly inebriated state, I agreed. My parents laughed at my situation. There’s a good bit of detail in the middle but 2 years later, Tere and I had an awesome, fabulous, lovely commitment ceremony at the Argyle Hotel on Sunset Boulevard with about 100 of our closest friends and family. It was the one thing I swore I would never do – it wouldn’t be the last time I did something I said I wouldn’t. I had made, to me, the ultimate commitment and it was the easiest decision I ever made. No angst, no stress, no hesitation.