Pre-memory: Hope for a Friend

Blog from some indeterminate amount of time from the future:

It’s raining today. Imagine that. Rain in Spring time! It wasn’t like that in California. We barely had seasons, or rain for that matter. What a wonder it is to live somewhere that has proper seasons.

I sit in my cushioned window seat with a mug of milk tea, wrapped in a fluffy blanket and I smile at the drizzle. I love rain. There was never enough of it. It made my hair frizz out like a poodle and I often got colds from all the puddle jumping but it was a small price to pay. Now I’m especially grateful for it because it means the newly planted garden will be watered, the rain barrel will be a little fuller, and I have the chance to snuggle up with my new husband on his old couch, still rumpled from our morning love making.

Rain reminds me of renewal and there’s a lot of new things in my life.

My wedding is the first thing that comes to mind when it comes to big changes for me. It was only a few months ago but I unearthed my Wedding Photo Album yesterday while unpacking more boxes from the move and everything is fresh in my mind again. The personalized vows, the luxurious reception decorated in gothic red, black and silver, the dagger and heart pins that represented my past as well as my new husband’s. It was the “showy” wedding where everyone had been invited. Our personal and intimate vows had taken place months before in the woods in the middle of nowhere. Just us, a fire and the night sky.  The one picture we took out there was the first one I placed in our house in the middle of the fire place mantle.

There was a time where marriage to another man seemed ludicrous to me. After I’d messed up the first one and been broken irrevocably apart, I was extremely reluctant to repeat the experience. Who wanted to go through that kind of thing twice? But he wore me down with patience and love and logic. I’d been given room to explore this broken me and do as I wished since I had no children attached to me. I think I came around pretty well and it was on the upswing I’d met my now husband. My ex husband was, well–surviving I guess. We were face book friends and barely that. It was time for me now. Me and him. I didn’t stand a chance against him really, but I appreciate the fact he let me think I did.

Asshole.

I snorted and took a sip from my mug, amused at myself.

“You okay babe?”

I turned my gaze away from the wet outdoors to the dark haired man walking toward me with a water bottle in one hand and a plate of snacks in the other. My blood warmed at the look of his muscles through his black tank and the tattoos peeking out from underneath it. I’d licked and bit every inch of those tattoos. I would NEVER get enough.

“I’m friggin great,” I reply and smile coyly up at him, his blue eyes sparking at me.

“That you are.”

He set a plate of crackers, sausage and cheese on my lap and took the opportunity to capture my lips in a rough kiss. My chest filled up like a helium balloon and made me light-headed. Another new and amazing thing for me. I could have kisses whenever I wanted. I didn’t have to plan vacations around our schedules and drive thousands of miles to come and get them. He was here, with me, in the same room and I didn’t have to leave in x-amount of hours, crying as I pulled away from him into traffic and depression.

“Hey, I love you babe but your 5 minute break has already lasted 20. I’ve been painting the bedroom by myself.”

I pressed my lips together to stifle the giggle that wanted to escape and raised my eye brows in an “oh-so-innocent” expression.

“But look! It’s our first rain since the new garden was put in! I had to be sure the plants weren’t getting water-logged or beat up too badly! I’m protecting our hard work!”

His eyes went squinty on me and his mouth curved into a mock frown.

“Fine, finnnneeeee. Eat then and get your energy back. Looks like we’ll be sleeping on the fold out couch again.”

I smirked.

“You weren’t complaining about sleeping on the couch last night. Or this morning. But maybe it’s because we weren’t sleeping for a long time.”

He rolled his eyes and kissed me again with a satisfied smile, sitting by my legs and popping a sausage in his mouth.

I repeated his actions and crunched on a cracker,  returning to look at the green, beautiful world outside my very first home. MY OWN HOME! A dream come true. Two bedrooms, one bath with a front AND back yard (our number one criteria). I’d be using half the garage for my crafting/writing studio and the second bedroom would be his office. I was like a little kid in a toy store going to Lowe’s and picking out paint colors together and filling our basket with lush greenery. I’d finally have my herb garden! We’d already ordered new furniture and we made plans to go antique shopping for accents and lamps and pictures later that week. He played it cool for the most part but I knew he was thrilled to be sharing this with me.

Happy wife, happy life.

We had debated for a while about renting first and not going into debt straight out of our wedding vows with a big purchase like a house. I was okay with that. The market was wider for rentals and we could leave without a fuss if something happened. I’d managed to save a little money from my various grants and scholarships and the psychology jobs I’d landed and he’d been working steadily as a grease monkey for a few years at hot rod shops. Not glamorous but I got free rides in sexy fast cars whenever I was in town. We had a little money pooled together to start-up.

But then I had an offer I couldn’t refuse. Right at the tail end of finalizing our wedding plans, I got a call from a publishing agency. A big one. Like, head hancho big wig in literature agency. They wanted to publish my biography as a series of fictional novels.

Yeah, no shit! My jaw hit the floor and still hasn’t quite rolled itself back up into neutral position.

I’d pitched the idea to them beginning of last year and had crossed my fingers as I pushed the “send” button on my computer. I’d dealt with traditional publishers before. Usually it was an agonizing first month of silence, then a depressed two months of zilch and finally resultant acceptance for the next four to six months. When the rejection letter came, I wasn’t surprised or even hurt. It was what it was and writing was a competitive business. Honestly, when the offer came in I had been completely buried in wedding plans and had forgotten about it. I thought it was a prank from one of my oh-so-charming soon-to-be brothers in law. (They’d been saved a skinning. Would have looked funny during the wedding all gooey and red.)

The advance the agency gave me on the books was more money than I’d ever had in the sum of all my working days. I was afraid to cash the check, thinking still that it might be some sort of prank or scam even though my agent cut it herself. I’d witnessed it. But it was enough to send me to the internet and look at the price of buying instead of renting. When I came forward with the idea and a solid list of acceptable properties, I was rebuffed. I looked at him in chagrin.

My soon to be husband had a surprise of his own.

He’d been offered a job at a start-up custom car company in Texas. They catered to restoring old cars and motorcycles, something that he had always wished to get in to. After getting a few stable positions at the garages and getting some experience under his belt, he decided that he was ready for a change. He’d been sitting on the decision for a little while since the chaos of my book contract and my traveling schedule didn’t leave us a lot of face time.

“That’s a fucking awesome offer. You you need to get on that right NOW!”

I don’t know if he expected me to have doubts or play the devil’s advocate for him or what but my complete acceptance took him aback at first. Change had always bothered me and he knew it. Perhaps he thought I’d be overwhelmed or reluctant. But with this, I saw a future blooming before us. There was no doubt in me that this was what we were going to do. Get married, pack up, and move to Texas.

As soon as he had finalized the e-mail to his future employer, I hauled him to the floor and instilled some wicked rug burns on my knees and elbows. Sweaty, light-headed and very satisfied, I laughed and felt happy tears streak down my cheeks. This was the culmination of all the waiting we’d been doing. This was the reward for years separated, for failure and divorce and unemployment. Our lives were about to begin anew.

We found a few fixer-upper houses and flew out to inspect them. I put in an offer on our first pick and we spent our time waiting for the answer to come in exploring our future town and meeting with his company heads. I immediately located all the crafting stores and quickly found a favorite cafe to write in that had amazing hot milk tea and scones. When we got the house and signed our names (BOTH OUR NAMES!) on the dotted lines my only regret was I couldn’t yet attach my married name to the signature.

Now, here we are, in a run down two bedroom that holds all our merged belongings, our shared hopes and future dreams.

“I love you,”I said aloud and brought his attention back to me. “Thank you for being here.”

“There’s nowhere else I’d rather be.”

He raised a paint-streaked finger and tucked a strand of hair behind my ear.

“Except maybe the bedroom, painting.”

“Or on the couch, not sleeping,” I answered and laughed when he waggled his eyebrows.

I love my life. Took a while to get here but it’s not about the goal is it? It’s about the journey.

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Author: Jessica Jordan

The adventures of one woman as she journeys to make it big in the Publishing World. With charming clumsiness she takes her first steps forward to travel this twisty-wisty world of blogging. Posts will be random, humorous, honest and emotional. She is never organized. Be warned!

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