eyes wide open

March 29, 2010 at 8:22 pm 2 comments

Nathan and I worked together for nine months before we confessed our devotion. And even after that heart beating, pulse racing, chilled from excitement confession, we still just said a simple “goodnight” and went home. We continued to bat eyelashes, talk endlessly, and languish in the delight of one another’s existence, but we didn’t make any moves. We took it real slow.

One night while I was working he called to tell me about a particular flower that smelled delicious but only put out its scent at night. He knew where some were growing and pressed upon me the need to go by these flowers on my way home. He gave me directions. I found this romantic, and intriguing. I followed his map, thinking I was headed toward a public rose garden or something, but instead the careful directions led directly… to his garden.

And there he was. In the moonlight. Surrounded by sweet-smelling Nicotiana, and the steam from his tea. His two-year old daughter, Bella, lay sleeping just inside the door. I parked my bike, swelled with happiness, and joined him on the steps. We talked about relationships in a philosophical sense and a good book we’d both read.

When I look back I realize he was so him in that moment. The tea. The ripped jean shorts and sandaled feet of summer. The late night awake-ness. The philosophical perspective. The sleeping girl. And I was so me too. The tank top. The bike. The just read book. The frankness.

When I got on my bike, giddy with our encounter, I said: “I feel like such a dork!”. We were both dorks. Total doofuses with big grins, falling in love, smelling night blooming flowers.

It is seven and a half years later and as I write this post the scent of Nicotiana drifts past my face. These flowers now climb all over our shelves, they form a backdrop to our lives. I almost take them for granted, but tonight I saw them afresh again, and walked down memory lane to that night in the garden when I was first seeing that beautiful man. He was him and I was me. The same him and the same me.

I realize that people really are who they are. Whatever it is, they are that already. We just don’t always see it, or don’t want to see it. There really is no point in holding one’s breath waiting for the divorce, the right job, the sobriety, or whatever the life changing event you are expecting to alter the person you’ve got your eyes trained on. They already are who they are, despite the scenery of their lives.

Everything that is the essence of Nathan was available that night. I think I saw it. Or at least the fuzzy version, filtered through my googly eyes, was close to the mark. I saw enough of who he truly is to not be resentful of who stands before me tonight. The two match. I didn’t deceive myself. And I am so glad.

Entry filed under: life lessons. Tags: , , .

baby math those pesky expectations

2 Comments Add your own

  • 1. fillydesigns  |  March 30, 2010 at 9:32 am

    Oh Nat, I love this memory. And that is soooo true. I want to write one for myself. A first impression…

  • 2. Romy  |  March 30, 2010 at 9:52 am

    wow. how beautiful. what a love you two have.


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