Sometimes you just get to be at the right time and the right place.
Some background: Joe and I have had the weekend planned for a while. It's our Big Gay Weekend. This is probably a little less exciting than you might be imagining. On Friday we saw two movies, one in the theatre, Pride, and then one that evening, Free Fall. Saturday we're going to Love Is Strange and then Sunday we're off to our local gay theatre company to see Freda and Jems Best of the Week. Rah! A week in gay culture.
So after seeing the movie, "Pride" on Friday we decided to go out for a beer. Along the way we ran into someone who we hadn't seen in a while. After we caught up, he began telling us about his son and the difficulties that his son was having. It turns out that his son has what dad called, a "mild intellectual disability," and that began a longer conversation. He had questions. I tried to answer them the best that I was able to. He was a well informed dad but hadn't been able to ask some questions that truly needed to be asked. He also needed to have verified that his worries were real, the dangers his son faced, socially, were worth attending to. I didn't tell him anything he didn't know, but I was able to give reassurance that action needed to be taken and strong advocacy for the appropriate supports, services and education needs to be undertaken.
It was a good conversation.
It had seemed just chance that we made our way to the pub in the way that we did, it had seemed just like a spontaneous decision to go for a drink after the movie, but after that, it seemed like we were needed to go and be in a particular place at a particular time.
We were in the middle of our Big Gay Weekend, and here were were talking to a father about his son, sharing information, listening to the stories he had to tell. And, oddly, it fit right in, because, of course, a Big Gay Weekend doesn't mean anything more than understanding that the world is big and diverse, that people need people and that love, whatever kind of love is needed in whatever kind of situation, is what makes us all human.
So here's to love, humanity and happy circumstances - we hope for more of those on our Big Gay Weekend.