Some memories are so vivid, like they happened yesterday. Others are more like a dream. Some people remember
the exact details of the day they met the love of their life. For me that day is a like a mist that has settled in - a little unclear.
Kevin and I are going to be celebrating our 23rd wedding anniversary this week. Anniversaries are wonderful for reflecting... 23 years! "How did we get here anyway?" So here I am remembering and, I guess, sharing those memories with you.
My college roommate got engaged over Christmas vacation. Her fiance was very kind to include me in his plans. He let me in on the details of how he would make the official proposal with a beautiful diamond ring. It would happen at Disneyland. In the Blue Bayou restaurant that overlooks the Pirates of the Caribbean ride. He would have the waiter bring the ring with their meal. It was all very romantic and exciting. Of course, their wonderful plans to start a life together meant change for me as well. Shortly after the engagement they found a new home and I found myself hunting. I needed a new place to live.
I knew exactly what I needed. A quiet apartment where I could live without any distraction from my studies. I was a fine art student, but, those general education classes (with 500 students meeting in an auditorium) were killing my GPA. I had to get serious and step up my game!
I was sure I was going to choose the first apartment. I was told there was only one student currently living in it. That was perfect - less people to distract me. The manager opened the door. It was dark, and a bit cold; but, it was tidy, other than some dishes left in the sink. This is exactly what I am looking for. A quiet place to work and study... To my surprise, I asked to see the other available unit.
Three girls were currently living in the next apartment. They were all home when the manager and I arrived. The apartment felt warm and welcoming. I didn't reconsider, I shoved aside the need for a quiet study spot in favor of warmth and light. "I'll stay here," I told the manager.
My first priority was to pay rent for the full semester. It took every bit of money in my account; but, I expected additional funds to pay for food, books, and supplies. I didn't want to bother my new roommates, so, I was rationing homemade cookies (sent in a gallon can from my sister) for three days before the check finally arrived.
I didn't realize how that very limited and poor diet had effected me until I was in the check out line at the grocery store. I felt like I was dying of thirst in the middle of the ocean - all that food but I couldn't eat it until I had paid for it. I found myself feeling a little light headed; but, I made it out to my car and back to my apartment with bags of groceries. My roommates had gone out for the day; so, I ate my first healthy meal in days, laid on the couch, and fell to sleep.
I can't tell you how long I had been dreaming when it happened, but I heard a knock at the door. I have a vague recollection of getting up and opening the door. A tall stranger looked at me and said, "you don't live here!"
I said, "Yes, I do" before I closed the door and went back to the couch.
I didn't give a second thought to the tall stranger, who he was, or why he had knocked on my door. I simply went back to my dreams.
to be continued.