Callie and I started dating exclusively September 22nd, 2010. Even before that, it’s fair to say that we were only dating each other although I had a girlfriend that moved from NY to FL right as our relationship was starting and I hadn’t seen her and had barely spoken to her in 3+ months. It was a whirlwind kind of thing that involved a lot of fishing, rainy afternoons, and late night phone conversations in hushed whispers. I was living back with the Parental Unit for about a year after 2 months in a psychiatric ward recovering from earth shattering depression after the dissolution of an almost 5 year Domestic Partnership. Borderline Personality disorder is a b*tch tho, ain’t it? Needless to say, they weren’t any less strict than when I was growing up. Even the keystrokes on my laptop at 1am with my parents behind their closed door and me behind mine, across the hall, on the OPPOSITE side from the door, was enough to send my mom into a tizzy! (SB: My mom is AMAZING, just don’t eff with her sleep!)
Unlike any other relationship I had been in, we worked out the kinks early on. We had no qualms about discussing what we were and weren’t okay with, what we could and couldn’t deal with, pet peeves, and relationship no-no’s. Neither of us was trying to waste anymore time in our lives. Nearing 30 with several failed relationships under our belts, we wanted to make sure that we didn’t figure out 5 years down the line that it simply wasn’t going to work.
So fast forward 4 years later, December 2013, a couple of weeks before Christmas, I finally buy her a ring. It may not be the most expensive or the biggest diamond, but my gut told me she’d love it. I researched long and hard to make sure that it was something that she would love and that matched her personality and who she was. Not that she wouldn’t love it anyway because I think at that point she was convinced I would never ask! Everything had to be just right though. Nothing on a whim. Perfectly calculated. That was the only way. Callie is a storyteller, and there is nothing she loves more than a great love story, and I was going to give her one! I started it by talking to her father and asking for his blessing. He hesitated for a second, but only because he was choking up and didn’t really know what to say. “As long as she’s happy, I’m happy.”
She’s always pressing me to buy Groupons for scavenger hunts, but I was just never really that interested. So what better way to ask her to marry me than to give her the ultimate hunt? Got family, friends, co-workers, and anyone who wanted in to help (thank you Facebook events). Wrote out clues (in perfect rhymes may I add), distributed them as needed, and got everyone in position, but not before I had emailed the itinerary at least 10 times and confirmed with everyone that they knew EXACTLY what was to happen and they were not to be late, OR ELSE!!!
January 4th, 2014 – 11am start
Clue #1-Her parents place, where she was raised, and dad gave her the second clue sending her off with a hug and kiss.
Clue #2-Mani-Pedi’s with my sisters. She has only 1 brother and wanting sisters was something that’s never left her. And besides, you can’t show off a shiny new engagement ring with your nails looking a mess!
Clue #3-Bowling alley in my home town where we had our first real date. We were non-dating for a while (read first paragraph). She walks in to find a spread of all her favorite bowling alley snacks, and a few drinks with 2 of our closest friends. After noshing on some good eats, they gave her…
Clue #4– My parents came in with my brother and his boyfriend (yeah! 2 gay kids out of 5!) and drove her back to their house, where I grew up, where my sisters would do her hair and make up and a new dress and shoes were waiting for her. After some shenanigans and lots of wine, my parents gave her clue number 5.
Clue #5– Off to the marina, where we had our first kiss. Where we fished in the rain for hours and knew that the other was “the one”. Where we played spades and she wiped the little beads of sweat of my nose which for some strange reason she thought were so cute. Where she held my hand and kissed me. Where our whole relationship lost the rockiness of the seas and finally reached the calms of the harbor.
On the car ride to the marina, my friends gave her my iPad which had a 12 minute iMovie of our whole relationship playing our soundtrack. It’s the exact amount of time from highway to marina. She cried for 12 whole minutes, only to arrive, be blindfolded by my best friend Marco and walked to the beginning of the gangway. 30 or so people, in 2 straight lines holding sparklers, rose petals all the way down the gangway and all over the dock, and candles leading the way to me. I asked her to marry me in our favorite place surrounded by all of our favorite people. It was incredible! And freezing! Coldest day in NY the whole year! -4!
Almost 8 months later we still aren’t married, but totally pregnant! This is not how I had envisioned this going at all! It’s all kind of backwards, isn’t it??? I never really thought about it much until I took Mary outside 2 days ago to play with her new sidewalk chalk. I was busy opening some mail when out of the blue this lively little 6 year old turns and asks,
Mary: “Why aren’t you and Callie married? You’re having babies and you’re not married? Pssh! Weeeeiiiiirrrrdddd!”
Me: “We just didn’t have time kiddo. We’ve been really busy getting Callie’s tummy ready for a baby, remember?”
Mary: “Yeah, but you’re ‘upposta be married first!”
Me: “Well, it’s a little different for us honey. I can’t help Callie make a baby, so we have to go to the doctor and get all those medicines. We needed money for the doctor, so we had to use the money we saved for our big wedding. Now we have to wait a little while before our we get married.”
Mary: “You don’t need monies! You just need to love each other! I’ll draw your marrying day!”
Somehow she put things into perspective. We don’t need money or anything extravagant. We don’t need flower arrangements, DJ’s, or wedding planners. No hugely overpriced cakes or 100 hours of arguing about who can and can’t sit at what table. Maybe we’ll just go to our local government office and tie the knot there, with our family and closest friends by our sides, followed buy a small intimate dinner. Maybe we’ll have something bigger when the babies get here. Maybe we won’t. All I know is that we just need what we needed since day 1.
Trust. Hope. Faith. Passion. Understanding. Honesty. Love.
Above all things love, and that we have covered.