A friend that doesn't mind being a handy man.
My friend J is one of the nice guys in my life. He also happens to be quite handy and doesn't seem to mind coming to my rescue.
Tonight he took me to dinner because I had to pay a plumber the other night. Never mind the fact that because of J, I saved $300!! Then when we were back at my house, he worked on my fence and promised to come back out later in the week to add a light to my pantry. I'm happy that he is willing to help me so much. This is the first time I've owned a home as a single girl. Whew! To say I'm thankful to my handy man is a giant understatement.
I've actually known J since I was 15 years old. The story of how we met is quite amusing. Somehow we even have a photo of that day. (No, I can't share it. Too embarrassing!!)
I grew up in the 80's and was a HUGE Duran Duran fan. I still am actually. (Old habits die hard.) It was 1985 and I was at the local amusement park with my best friend. J was sitting on a park bench with a friend. He caught my attention because he looked just like John Taylor, the bass player from Duran Duran. Forget it, I had to meet the guy.
We've been the best of friends since then. I've known him longer than I've not known him. How many friends can you say that about?
J is practically a member of my family. He, like my father, mother and brother, is an avid fan of classic muscle cars. J could sit and talk with my dad for hours about cars. Sometimes when J and my brother get together, its almost like they're speaking another language. I don't understand but I know there's love there. That's a language I can always read. After all, my brother was only 5 when J came into our lives. J is practically a big brother to him.
I remember telling the ex when we were dating that I had lots of male friends. I hoped he would understand and not be jealous. It was a pleasant surprise to see J and the ex get along so well. They used to sit up nights drinking beer long after I had retired for the evening. J was even emotional the day I announced to him that my divorce was final. He said he just really hoped the ex and I would work things out.
My kids love him. He has known them both since birth. He is patient and funny and doesn't seem to mind the harassment they give him. Sometimes I think he enjoys it. We go out and eat together, the four of us. I'm sure everyone assumes he is the father of my children. He doesn't seem to mind.
He freaks me out sometimes he knows me so well. If you were to give him a situation and ask him, "So, how would T react to this?" He would be able to tell you what I'd say, what I'd be thinking and even my mannerisms. I jokingly accuse him of stalking me. I don't know many people that know me like he does.
He has always been good to me. Even tonight, I was telling him that I expect to see him get impatient with some of the house items he works on for me. I remember seeing my father and even the ex curse in anger while doing house repairs. I cringe when asking for help with anything; my body already responds to someone else's impending irritation. But not with J. He does every task, no matter how frustrating, and continues to have the same calm, patient demeanor. He even makes jokes with me in his frustration. It takes me off guard and brings a smile to my face. There's something sexy about a man who will work for you and still act like you're doing him the favor.
I'm sure you're all wondering, "Why aren't you dating J?"
We did that and well, God only knows the reason we didn't work out. We are good together. We get each other. We crack each other up in ways that other people wouldn't have a clue about. We were even good in bed together. He has a talent that is way beyond anything I've ever seen. (that one's for you big J!)
The most ironic thing of all is that I met J 4 months before I met my soldier in high school. I was crushing on J when my soldier was crushing on me. My soldier went on to date someone else throughout our high school days and thus we never dated.
When my soldier came back into my life last year, I had only had one other previous relationship since the split with the ex. It had ended 7 months prior. Who did I date in said previous relationship? You guessed it. It was J.
I remember one night last September when my soldier and I were up late talking. My phone rang and I knew who it was. I giggled and told my soldier, "That's J. He calls to check in around this time of night."
My soldier smiled and said, "He loves you."
He does love me. And I love him.
We were reminiscing the other night when he said, "I would've never guessed that day at the park that 23 years later you'd be a single mom and I'd be helping you fix things around your house."
Yeah, me neither. But J is more than just my handy man. He's a friend for life. 23 years and counting!