Growing up, I knew exactly what I wanted to be when I grew up.
I was so determined to make this happen, that when my mom’s brother, my crazy Uncle Ted, finally decided to tie the knot, I made him an offer he thankfully refused. “Marry me!” I shrieked, my cheeks tear stained as I watched him proclaim his love for someone who wasn’t four and a blood relative. Whatever.
As a teenager, I began dating what would later become a pathetic list of crappy boyfriends and dead end romances, continuing on my desperate quest in the hopes that my prince charming was lurking somewhere among the chain-smoking, beer-bonging losers I tended to attract. Each time I got dumped via pager, or found out a friend had “accidentally” hooked up with one of my boyfriends during an innocent game of “peekaboo” (“How was I supposed to know that skinny-dipping would lead to that?”) in some backyard hot tub, I ended up in front of my bathroom mirror, scrutinizing every imperfection, wondering if there would ever be a guy willing to love me despite………myself.
Thank God for miracles. Even if they do come cloaked as a $5.00 pitcher of Coors Light.
Some people meet the love of their lives in college, on a blind date, during a lunch break at Starbucks, or maybe even at the grocery store. I’ve always thought that there was something sexy about the idea of locking eyes with someone while searching for seasonal plump and juicy produce, your fingers accidentally bumping into his as you squeeze the same ripe beefsteak tomato. But everytime I found myself eyeing the fruits and vegetable section, the pickings seemed so limp and stale.
The fruits and vegetables, however, were always spot on.
I finally met my lifelong dude in a cheesy bar over a debate on creationism and a bad pickup line. It was, by far, the least romantic setting ever, complete with vinyl checkered table cloths and a bartender that looked exactly like Moe from The Simpsons. Little did I know that the dark haired boy with the goatee sitting across from me in this dingy watering hole was going to become my best friend, my husband, the father of my children.
All I knew was that he was smokin hot and single.
This boy, now a man ten years older, wiser, and even hotter (especially with those little specks of grey hair that look so distingushed on him but would send me straight to Paul Mitchell himself if I ever found one) and I; we’ve been through a lot. Some good. Some really, really bad. We’ve seen the worst in one another, and brought out the best in each other. We’ve screamed, cried, cursed, promised, forgiven, hoped, prayed, laughed, survived, high-fived, dreamed, and loved. Together.
Which is why it came as no surprise that after I had myself a little nervous breakdown on Saturday over all sorts of life-related hoopla, and asked Superman for a fork for my carb-laden lunch, my husband, the love of my life, walked over to my son and, without skipping a beat or calling the local Neurospsychiatric unit, said “No, not that one little dude. Mommy likes these other ones, with the longer prongs, better.”*
It’s not a perfect union.
But it’s pretty damn close.