Seeing him for the first time, standing in my yard with two other exchange students. I was drunk but even drunk, I knew he was hot. I looked at my friend Sean and said "Who's that?" with a head nod. "Oh he's the new Spanish assistant." Sean answered. "I think I'll go introduce myself." I said and I walked down the stairs, over the patio, towards my fate.
The first movie we saw together was "Mystery Men." I had decided to avoid him. I was already falling for him. We had sat in my room a few days before in front of my book shelf. My room was tiny and cramped. Filled with a huge bed and too many bookshelves. We were glowing from strands of Christmas lights hung all over my ceiling. He had confessed a love of D. H. Lawrence, and my heart beat faster for this man who not only loved to read but loved to read my own favorite. Our heads were close together, and I was on fire from his breath so near my ear. Angel interrupted us....
Later after the movie, we stood in my kitchen, drinking and laughing. I flirted outrageously. He laughed but didn't flirt back. Until later when he kissed me.
I told him "I love you" in the middle of a water gun fight. He squirted me with a water machine gun but didn't tell me he loved me. I sat on the old plaid couch feeling scared. I loved him so much.
After I introduced him to my mom she called "He's the one. Marry this guy."
On Halloween, I took three pregnancy tests with my friend Molly waiting at the bathroom door. The lines didn't lie. I was breathless with fear and excitement. I called him and he said "I have to take a shower." But then he was there, hugging me fiercely. I told him he didn't have to stay but I wanted him too. I wanted to have this baby with him. Our baby. He was angry "Of course I want the baby!" And he did.
Our wedding came between two snow storms. I wore a dark blue velvet dress that I had bought at Sears. My friend Andy had driven me there so I could pick something out. I had to find something that would cover my pregnant belly. I wore my hair tied back with a blue silk ribbon. We married at a little church in Maine surrounded by friends, my mom, his mom, and my grandparents. My grandfather bought me a dozen yellow roses to carry. We read a poem to each other. He in Spanish and me the English translation. Afterwards, we ate a Chinese restaurant, and had a crazy party where our friends drank and danced. We slept on my bed, entwined.
And then the look in his eyes when we became three.
I have not always deserved this man that came to me from so far away. But each day I am thankful that he sticks around despite this. Sometimes I look over and I feel my breath catch as if I am seeing for the first time. Or I wake up to his body pressed against mine, his sleeping breath by my ear, and know joy. It's that simple. That complicated. Forever.