When we met, I was the displaced Midwestern high-schooler sneaking out of the back door of her family’s house. He was the college kid from the big city who stole my heart with his smile. Six months later, I moved away for school and that should have been the end of it. But it wasn’t. Somewhere, somehow, we decided it was worth the wait.
Sure, we didn’t love the long weeks between unbelievably short weekends, sometimes two or three at a stretch: Me cramming classwork and cleaning and all of life’s loose ends into between Monday and Friday so we could savor every minute of our 48 hours together. Him putting thousands, tens of thousands, and finally more than a hundred thousand miles onto his Mazda Protege driving across state lines. That little car–purchased that first summer just so we could see each other, now ten years old and going strong– is a testament to our relationship. Sure, it’s a little beat up and rough around the edges, but with one of us behind the wheel, it knows exactly where it’s going.
Our regular five-hour commute wasn’t enough to deter him, so I moved to Montana for a month and to Tokyo for a year because those were things I needed to do. He had the strength and solidarity to say, I’ll be here when you get back. I’m the roamer… the one who drives with the windows down and the music way up, not caring if I get lost as long as it’s somewhere interesting. He’s Mr. Precision, plotting routes around traffic and building iTunes playlists just to suit his mood.
I’m about the journey, and he’s about the destination… but we both look at the map and say, OK, let’s go there.
Now we’ve got a high school romance, those college days, our long engagement, and the first year of marriage behind us. Ten years today.
Ten years since you first asked and I first said yes.
Ten years down a strange and scenic road, and ain’t no sign of it getting any less meandering. He still lets me take solo trips because I can and puts up with my relentless need to see everything that can possibly be seen. I love the fact that he’d rather stay in on a Saturday night and can cook better than I can.
We’ve got a good thing going here. It was worth the wait.