My Love, continued...
"Please don't stop touching me."
We couldn't get enough of each other that Friday night. We craved each other. Most of the night, we did nothing but stare into each others' eyes and sigh.
We both enjoy sex and are very sexually attracted to each other. What we found though, in those early dates, was that we simply loved talking and listening to each other.
It happened on one of our earliest dates. I ran a bubble bath in my garden tub. We took off each others' clothes and began kissing. We sat in the bubbles and caressed each other and...
Talked. For two hours.
We always had great conversations and with complete openness and honesty. That Friday night was no different. We spoke of life through tears and raw humility. We held each other and talked more. The energy between the two of us was magnetic. We simply wanted to be skin to skin.
It was during our bath that night that he finally admitted, "This is really freaking me out. I'm feeling things for you that blow me away and its only been 3 weeks!"
He continued, "I want to be with you. I want to marry you. I want your children to call me 'Daddy'. But, I'm scared. You are surrounded by wonderful men. And you were in high school too. I've never had a relationship survive a deployment. I am certain you will meet someone else while I'm gone. 15 months is a very long time."
And before I could help myself, I said it. I looked into those blue green eyes and the words escaped from my heart.... "I love you. I just... really love you."
His face didn't change. He didn't even blink. He held my stare and said, "I love you too honey."
Ok, I will admit. It had happened fast. But we both were so very certain in that moment that I knew nothing could stop us.
I knew I wanted to wait for him. However, I didn't know if I could promise him that I would be here when he returned. I wasn't that naive anymore. Unexpected things happen in life despite our intentions. The very fact that he was in my life was unexpected. I only knew that I loved him and that he was definitely worth waiting for.
"But," he said sadly, "I can't even guarantee that you will love the man who returns..."
I wanted so badly to take his pain away. I wished at that moment that I could take his heart and keep it safe while he was deployed. I only held him even tighter and promised him that I would be here for him, no matter what, as his friend.
The next morning, I let him sleep in as I got showered and prepared myself for the very long day ahead. I needed to get going. He rolled over as I nudged him back into consciousness, smiled at me and began singing to me. The strangest thing was that he began singing a song that my dad always sang when I was a little girl. It completely freaked me out!
I gave him my house key and told him that I had to leave. He begged me to stay and give him 10 minutes. I couldn't wait. I was already running behind and it was a 4 hour drive back to my hometown. I hated to leave him but I promised that I would see him before the weekend was out.
He called me during the long drive. He was being supportive and loving about the fact that I was going to sing at the service. I was nervous I would break down. (and I did on the very last line of Amazing Grace. Whew! That was tougher than any wedding I've ever sang at!)
After my dad's service, I headed back into town. I spent Saturday night sad and thankfully alone in my house. I needed time to be emotional with all that had happened.
Sunday morning, I surprised my love by showing up at his triathlon. I didn't have a clue where to find him but I saw an older man who looked familiar to me. I watched as he stood with his camera near the transition area. We made eye contact but never spoke.
I soon saw my love rolling in with his bike. He was excited to see me and quickly introduced me to the older gentleman I'd made eye contact with. It was his father.
His father, his mother and I talked while awaiting his finish. They had heard quite a bit about me and my girls. After he came through the finish line, we bid them farewell and decided to head over to his younger brother's house (no, not the brother I'd dated) as planned initially.
After loading his bike into his car, he walked me to my car. He was sweaty and wearing nothing but bike shorts and running shoes and yet he looked like the sexiest man I had ever seen. I wanted to devour him. I couldn't help myself and leaned in to kiss him.
"I'm gross, honey." I didn't stop. I wanted to taste the very salt that fell from his brow. "Ok.. apparently you don't care."
That kiss.... Something about that kiss made my stomach flip around like I've never felt before.
At his brother's house, he told them all about me and my children. He even pulled up his email to show them a photo I'd had taken of me and my girls. He was very proud as if it was his very own family.
An hour later, my phone rang. Another friend of mine had passed away the previous day.
I felt like I was in emotional hell. But at least I was with my love.
His brother and sister-in-law had to run an errand and left us in their house alone. I couldn't take my eyes off of him. I was drained but blissfully content in his presence as we sat on the couch and watched TV. I felt safe with him and somehow it made everything better.
Something was off. He seemed distant. He began asking questions about my not-yet-filed divorce... saying something about ethics in the Army...
I got the distinct impression that he was trying to push me away.
To be continued....next week, the final post in the series