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Meeting Matt's Family

In his post yesterday, Matt recalled some of the wonderful memories he had about the beginning months of our relationship. One memory I have occurred about two months into our dating and is very special to me, not only because it involved meeting Matt's whole family, but because I began to seriously be convinced that I was in love with him. I knew my feelings were strong already but for some reason it sorta clinched the deal for me. Matt and I didn't use the "L" word at that time, but I know I was thinking about it.

Matt has this incredible relationship with his mom, his dad and his two brothers. Matt had been telling them about me from the time we first met and his mom told him to invite me over for dinner so they could all meet me. A date was set for a Saturday night and I found out later that both his brothers made a decision to bail on plans they already had so they could be there! Imagine that! Matt told me that was a huge deal for his brothers because they were hugely independent and rarely changed their plans for anybody.

As the time got closer, I was starting to get more nervous. For some insecure reason I started thinking about how I could win them over. Matt had never had a boyfriend before and I was thinking all eyes were going to be on me, so I better make a good impression. Matt reassured me that I didn't have to prove anything to them. "Just be yourself. They're gonna love you." Yeah, sure. Easy for him to say!

When Matt and his mom opened the door, I had some cut flowers for his mom. His mom didn't wait for Matt to introduce me. She just had this huge smile on her face and said, "Well, you must be Brad. Oh, and look at the flowers! That's so sweet. They'll look perfect on the table. Come on in and meet everybody." Matt was taking all this in and grinning from ear to ear. He kissed me, ushered me in and closed the door.

His mom realized she hadn't introduced herself and apologized. For some reason I was expecting something more formal, but she leaned in and gave me a sweet kiss on the cheek! For some reason I knew everything was going to be alright. I could see where Matty got his charm!

His dad came in the room, introduced himself and said how happy he was to meet me. Then his two brothers came in (one is 2 years younger and the other is 2 years older than Matt) and I met them. His younger brother immediately said he heard I liked soccer and started asking me questions about my school team, what position I played, etc. His older brother smiled and kinda slowed things down. He just said, "Whoa, everybody. Let's just go in the den and get some snacks and something to drink." Big brother to the rescue!

After about 30 minutes I felt like I had been a part of the family forever and was returning home after a long absence. It's funny but I don't know who I hit it off with better. After some snacks, him mom let me come in the kitchen to help her with some last minute dinner things. I had already mentioned that I loved to cook, so she said it was nice to have a man in the house who wasn't afraid of the kitchen. Matt, his dad and brothers let out a huge howl. "Awwwww, that's not fair!" It was great fun. Matt just winked at me.

During dinner, Matt just sat back, grinning most of the time, while everybody asked me questions and began telling me stories about Matt. It was clear that I had stepped into this incredibly close family. I mean, it seemed like they were so comfortable and easy with each other. Pretty soon I no longer felt like a guest. It was like they were treating me like a family member.

After dinner, his younger brother took me to his bedroom where he showed me some trophies he won for soccer. We talked a little while and realized we liked some of the same music and movies.

His older brother got out some baby pictures of Matt and sorta took me through his childhood. It was so clear and obvious his older brother loved Matt. We both laughed and I think bonded over enjoying some pictures of Matt making these ridiculous funny faces when he was a kid. He was already a ham and a show-off when the camera was around! Some things never change as you get older, do they Matty? :)

His dad was a great joker! He was so kind and had this subtle -- and sometimes not so subtle -- sense of humor. For example, as I was getting ready to go, he said something like, "Well, Brad. Any boyfriend of Matt's is a friend of mine! You're always welcome here, but, well, how can I say this? Hmmmm, I am going to have to ask you to empty your pockets before you leave. Just for security sake. I know you'll understand." He was saying all this with a completely serious face. I think my eyes darted between him and Matt and then his dad just said, "Well, maybe I can make an exception this one time, but I better not hear of any familiar jewelry being pawned in the next month or so!" Then he let out this huge laugh and gave me a bear hug!

When I left, every single one of them said I was to consider myself welcome in the home anytime. His dad said he hoped I didn't think Matt came from a crazy family. I felt so comfortable by this point that I just looked at everybody and said (with the same straight face his dad had given me earlier) that I knew of a good psychiatrist I could refer them to. Well, you would have thought I had said the funniest thing ever uttered by another human being. Did dad didn't miss a beat and said, "Well, Brad, since you seem to have found something redeeming about Matt, you are going to join the family in any therapy!" I swear to God I didn't want to leave.

Matt followed me out to my car. Before I even got to the car door I realized I was crying. I turned to Matt to give him a hug and kiss and realized he was crying too. He looked right into my eyes and all he said was, "You are so amazing. I actually think they like you more than they like me." Well, we just hugged and held onto each other for a while.

He called me later that night and told me everything they all said about me. After just two months of dating, I went to sleep that night with the "L" word on my mind. Was it possible that I was in love with him? All I remember before falling asleep was that I had a huge smile on my face.
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