This weekend I am heading north towards a large body of water to go visit my friend Becky. I was going to leave Saturday morning due to guilt, mostly, about leaving my husband to fend for himself and the kid for THE WHOLE WEEKEND. But Beck emailed me and asked me to come Friday night, instead. She has a big trip planned for us, including wineries and fabric stores, oh my! So I dutifully asked my husband about it, and he was all "GO! Take what time you need. We'll be fine. Have fun. Here's some money, too."
When I first met John we were in high school, and it was the first week of band camp. (The jokes over the years have been grueling, I assure you.) I was 13, he was 14, and because he is who he is he remembers exactly what I was wearing. I have very little recollection of this meeting. I do remember a very cute guy who was very funny and too cool to hang out with me (I thought.) John remembers thinking "Look at that beautiful girl! She'll never talk to me." And then I promptly walked up and said "Hi! My name is..." and that was that. We were best friends nearly from the start. I remember the first time he put his arm around me, and the thrill that ensued. We tried dating briefly in high school, but it soon became more like dating a brother, or so I told myself and everyone else.
I moved away, but we stayed best friends for 10 years. He eventually moved to where I was to go to college. (He says he didn't know, no one believes him, including me.) He tried all sorts of ways to get me to date him. I tried everything to get him to reconsider. "I'll be a horrible girlfriend" I said. "I'll cheat on you. I'll lie to you." But really, he was the only person I had ever felt like myself around. He was the only person I could depend on, and even though I didn't know it, I was terrified that I WOULD do all those things to him and lose him forever. John wouldn't give up.
Eventually, after I came home from college and we ended up spending all our time together, we decided it would be better if we moved into nearby apartments, and then in together. It wasn't that linear in reality. We spent most of time together drinking beer and watching pro-wrestling, listening to music and talking. It was "safer" for one of us not to have to drive home, plus the money we spent on gas, the phone (talking all the time) and etc, etc. John had always saved his money buying bulk hot dogs and cheap cigarettes and beer so that he could take me out. After one of these times I asked if he would consider what we had just done a "date" since he was so big on dating me. Eventually we got married and had a kid....
How the hell did I get so lucky? I've left out so much, like the fact that he cooks dinner 99.9% of the time, does the grocery shopping and supports everything I do. He is funny. He is cool. He remembers the strangest stuff, and is nearly unbeatable at Trivial Pursuit. He is patient, kind and one of the most understanding souls I have ever met. I will never be able to love him as much as he deserves, even though I am doing it as hard and as much as I can.
But Friday night I am flying out of here like a bat out of hell, and I am going to enjoy every minute I am gone. Because he said it was OK to. Best. Boyfriend. Ever.