On Friday nights, Tom would coerce Eric to put on his coat and take him to play bingo. Like any other couple in the suburbs, their social life was built around simple, affordable, social, self-affirming events.
Of course, nobody at the bingo parlor knew that Eric and Tom were a gay couple. When Tom had his first seizure, it was during one of the bingo calls. Eric realized that Tom was unable to concentrate and was confused about his whereabouts. In a rush of time that included an ambulance ride to a nearby hospital, their intimate world fell to pieces.
The tumors on Tom's brain were all too real. The AIDS diagnosis that followed was a nightmare that confirmed that reality.
A year and a half later, Tom was dead. Eric's devastated, he was alone. Tom had been his whole life. Eric took care of Tom.
We have to wonder if the love this couple shared is so different from the love between people who are not homosexual.
It isn't. Eric's grief is as profound as that of anyone whose union has been broken. It is as deep as pain you or I have felt.
That he loved is what we can think about.