Sunday, July 24, 2011


I could start at the beginning, but that was a long time ago.  And I haven't reached the end yet, so it seems somewhere in the middle should be acceptable.

It is 9:40 pm on a Sunday. My daughter is supposed to be in bed, which means she is alternately running through the house chasing kitties and coming to me to ask if we can go outside and chase fireflies.  My fiance is at work.  The cats are terrorizing the house plants. I am sitting at my computer wishing I wasn't in the midst of a crazy bout of insomnia.  

My boyfriend proposed on Wednesday.   It was pretty wonderful.  I stood in for a double header on the Fleethood Mafia's softball team.  It was about a hundred degrees, and we were all virtually melting on the bench.  Our team captain asked if we wanted to forfeit and grab some beers instead.  Tempting, but not nearly as fun.  I was asked to play catcher for the very first time.  Somewhat terrifying with neither dental insurance nor proper head gear.  I managed to protect my face, catching balls primarily with my shoulders and knees.  I had played one game in the past 17 years, and to be honest, I am no better now than i was then despite being in far better shape.  Well after 2 full games, in the blistering sun, covered head to toe in SPF 50 (I feel old just admitting to that), dirt and chalk covered my legs, adhering to that god awful glue that sweat and sunscreen make.  My shorts had chalky hand prints, I had to abandon my tee shirt or die of heat exhaustion, my shoes were covered in dust, my shins were bruised, my hair making that funny pony tail halo, the makeup I had applied 15 hours earlier was ranging between nonexistent and melted, and I apparently did little beyond generate a few laughs for the team.  My legs were sore, I was exhausted, I was a mess, but in a great mood.  My mom came and took my daughter for the night, so after we got out, I called my boyfriend and asked if he wanted to meet for an air conditioned beverage somewhere. He asked me to meet at his house.  I got there and rambled on and on about my softball game, the bloopers and amusing out takes.   He listened patiently.  And then he said he had something to show me.  He pulled out a tiny little box.  And he got down on one knee.  And he proposed right then and there.  I was so excited I did the girl clap and jumped up and down for a minute.  I gave him a hug and he put the ring on my finger.  It wasn't for a minute or two that I realized I had forgotten to say "yes!"  He was so nervous he didn't even notice and had quite the laugh when I stopped him and just said "yes!"

Afterward, we went for dinner and a smoothie.  He said he was so nervous he couldn't even say my name, and I thought that was great since I was so excited I forgot to say yes.  He apologized for proposing with us both a mess. He had wanted to wait for a more ideal time, doing something special like canoeing together.  We pondered all of the cute scenarios of proposing to someone as clumsy as myself on a canoe.  I'm grateful that he didn't. There's no jumping up and down in a canoe.  And unless he'd tied some fishing line from the ring to the boat, I'd have likely dropped it in my excitement.

We sent a text to his family of a picture of my hand with the ring and a note saying "she said yes!"  His sister called and couldn't stop talking.  She mostly kept shouting at him for not telling her.  His sister told his mother who had deleted the text not understanding what it was.  Much celebration ensued.

Now we are trying to plan our wedding, with no idea whether to invite everyone or just the family, how much we can spend, or anything else really.  I was married once before and the thought of doing it again is a little terrifying.  It will be different this time, I am sure of that.  I am probably dating the first NICE guy in my life, he is wonderful to me and my daughter. She keeps running around telling everyone she is going to marry him. Which is kinda true in the package deal sort of way.

In a couple months, he is going to move into our house.  Which means some redecorating and resorting of things is underway.  Today we patched walls, and repainted the bedroom.  It was red. He hated red and wanted blue.  I can't imagine spending a Michigan 9 month winter staring at icy blue walls.  We compromised with green.  I thought that would be okay.  Got the room all painted and put our new furniture back in.  And the waterworks started.  Suddenly I feel like there is no room for my stuff, and I don't know where to put anything, and he hates everything I have, and everything I have worked so hard for to rebuild my life for my daughter and I after divorcing her father is going to be handed over to someone else . . .  And I realize it's my hormones talking and not him.  I'm weeping hysterically and he is trying to console me with promises of repainting it all back the way it was.  Poor guy.  He held me and did what he could.  But sometimes hormonal logic has a direct link to a woman's tear ducts, and really it all makes sense to us.

I realized today how scared I really am to let go.  It was amazingly difficult to get to where I am, which isn't that big a deal to a lot of people.  I have a steady job, I own my home, my daughter has a room with so many toys it is a little ridiculous.  We have food on the table.  These are things that were not always a guarantee when I was younger.  During my previous marriage life was so tumultuous I seldom knew what to expect, and afterward, my daughter and I had to hop through a few crummy living situations while I saved up the down payment for a house.  I left all the furniture in the divorce and have spent the last three years piecing my life back to a whole.  And the simple act of repainting a room together to something we can almost agree on seemed like a great idea until it happened.  And suddenly I am taking input from someone else, not making all the decisions alone, or with the help of a tiny person who thinks all the walls should be painted in purple glitter and teal crayon.  What a scary thought to love again.  To get so close to someone else that they can alter the tiny, safe, tranquil universe I have created. To recreate that space as a family, where decisions are made together. Looks so easy, and yet the emotions involved in allowing another voice, allowing someone to help me move things, fix things.  Letting someone in is apparently harder than in the movies.  Trust.  I can haz it.

And truth be told, it actually looks pretty nice in there without my tear goggles on

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