I had breakfast this morning with three queens and a straight guy. Two of the queens were former Ms. Delawares. One of them is my niece. She'd brought her boyfriend. The other former Ms. Delaware was flying solo. The remaining queen was a very sweet but (unfortunately) prematurely balding young man who has been my niece's best friend since they were in grade school. (And face it, ladies, a gay guy is definitely a girl's best friend!)
We were having breakfast together because last night we had all gathered at a hotel in Newark, Delaware to celebrate the 25th wedding anniversary of my sister and brother-in-law. They'd taken one of the ballrooms, just off the lobby, for the event. Because it promised to be a late night, I'd taken a room there for the evening, as did, apparently, the other queens and their escorts.
The party was great. I had a wonderful time. Right up until the moment when my sister, in a fit of familial exhuberance, fueled by tee many martoonis, blurted out to the crowd, through the Karaoke system, that her brother (me) was, "a recovering alcoholic."
Now, I don't make a secret of the fact that I'm an alcoholic and that I'm in recovery. I don't even mind that my friends and family share that information, one on one, with people they know.
But something way down deep inside me feels kind of icky about having somebody I know and love... blurt it out in public. Especially if I'm there. I wanted to hide. I was pissed. I was hurt.
I sat and sulked for awhile. Fortunately, it was late enough in the evening, and enough liquor had been consummed by everyone, so nobody noticed how I was feeling and acting. Around 11:30 I discreetly left the party and went to my room in the same hotel for the night.
This morning I prayed about it and thought about all the times I had thoughtlessly ignored the feelings of others over the years and about how many of them had forgiven me, and about how we're all human and we all, including me, make mistakes and it was then that I realized that the best thing to do was to call my sister and mention it, without being angry about it.
Which I did. In the old, evil, drinking days, I would've been a real prima donna drama queen about such a public gaffe. There wouldn't have been any forgiveness, at least not without causing as much suffering as possible in retaliation for the original slight.
My sister was embarrassed. She tried to explain it away by saying that she only said it because she was so proud of me. I assured her that she was forgiven, that I know how much I had to be forgiven for from my own past, that I loved her and knew she would never do anything to hurt me and then I let her get back to sleep. She was pretty hungover.
Then, happily, I trucked on down to the lobby for my "complimentary cooked-to-order" breakfast and ran into the group of youngsters I mentioned up above. They were pretty hungover, too. But we had a lot of laughs anyway. Beauty queens have pretty wicked senses of humor. So do their boyfriends, gay and straight.
These days I'm just a queen among queens. No better, no worse, than the rest.