So there was this guy, I called him "Gary from work". And we had been friends for a while as we worked at the same company and passed each other in the cafeteria or on our way to meetings. He was a nice guy - charming, funny, smart - and we used to go to lunch every once and a while as friends. He was divorced and just getting back into the dating scene and we used to compare dates. He was a much better dater than anyone that I had been dating, but due to the fact that he was a divorcee and was not Jewish, it never dawned on me that he and I should date.
One day "Gary from work" got offered a new position at work. So we wanted to go out and celebrate. But for some reason, instead of lunch, we decided to go our for drinks after work. I invited my close friend, Beth, who lived nearby to join us as I thought they might really hit it off. She likes dogs and "Gary from work" likes dogs. Maybe they would be a match!
Later, Beth told me the minute she walked into the bar, she knew there was something between us. And she was right. She tends to be right a lot, but that is for another post!
By December of 2008, my cat Zoe had pretty much moved in with "Gary from work" who then became known as "Gary my boyfriend". I was at his place so much that I hated to leave Zoe alone in my condo so off she went to Gary's place. Since Gary lived so close to work, we would up staying there a lot and it made more sense.
I put my condo on the market that Spring and by Memorial Day, it was sold and we put my things in storage and I moved into Gary's apartment. By the end of that summer, we found a home we liked and we settled. "Gary my boyfriend / roommate" and I moved into our new home and were so excited about the life we were starting together. Everything was moving so fast, but it felt so right and neither one of us wanted to wait for our life together to begin.
On one warm Tuesday in September 2009, "Gary my boyfriend / roommate" took me to lunch at the same place where we had our first date and he proposed right there in the parking lot as he could not even wait till he got inside. "Gary my fiance" was born.
I am not sure if I ever thought that I would find Mr. Right, but as soon as Gary and I started to get serious, I knew that I wanted to marry him. It did not matter that he was married before or that he was not Jewish. The past was the past and we wanted a future - together. In a way, I saw his past marriage as a practice round - he would know better this time around what he wanted and who he was. And I knew that I could be his wife and still practice my religion, if I wanted to. What mattered most was that he loved me so completely that I knew I would always be safe with him. And I knew that I loved him every bit as much and that we were so lucky to find each other.
Saturday, May 29, 2010, we tied the knot. It was the loveliest day and far surpassed any dreams I could have had for our wedding. We found an Interfaith Rabbi who did a great job of incorporating what mattered to both of us and our families in the ceremony. We then danced well into the night and partied like it was the biggest event in our lives. And it was. I knew then as I know now that I was one of the lucky ones and could not wait for our lives to start. "Gary my husband" and I had so much love and we knew that would get us through.
By now, anyone reading this knows what a first year of marriage we had - so much of it so very amazing and wonderful. A honeymoon to Mexico and New Year's in New Orleans. A weekend in Washington, DC with my college roommate. So many nights spent with families and friends...it was all a dream. And although we thought there would be 3 of us celebrating our 1st Anniversary, it is back to just us and the beautiful memories of the 37 weeks that we were pregnant with our daughter.
My hope is that by our 2nd and 3rd and 4th anniversaries, there will be the laughter and giggles and maybe even cries of our baby or babies filling our home. You can't plan for love and you can't plan for life so you need to just live each day in the moment and enjoy what you have and who you are and take it from there. After all, we are still here and our love is stronger than ever. And that has to count for something, right?
Happy Anniversary, Gary! I love you so.