Monday, November 21, 2005


I had my friend Allison pick me up that night. We had been looking forward to the party for a few weeks. It was the weekend before Thanksgiving, and between my new job and my classes, I was so swamped. I really needed to blow off some steam. It's not that I was planning on going home with a certain someone else, it's just that I was planning on getting drunk. Underaged, stressed out, college student drunk. There was no way I was driving home.

Allison and I were among the first to arrive. Jax mixed us some of her trademark Crystal Light and vodka. My tongue turned bright orange as I sucked it down. The doorbell kept ringing and pretty soon the party was on. We drank, and laughed, and flirted mercilessly. We played strip Jenga. We stargazed from the third floor balcony, but damn, it was cold out there.

Until it wasn't. Until it was so jam-packed and hot inside I just had to get out for some air. And this guy, the one with whom I had flirted mercilessly for the past month, followed me out.

He was the kind of guy that was totally out of my league. He was tall, and slender, and tall, and he had great arms and a gorgeous smile. With dimples. His auburn hair had a just a hint of red lowlights. It was long -- longer than mine, and incredibly sexy. All those weeks of flirting, and I always assumed he saw me as a little sister type of kid; someone to tease, someone he found amusing. I figured he had a tall, leggy supermodel-type girlfriend at home.

But he didn't.

And we talked for a while, and laughed for a while, and I forgot about how cold it was on a November night in the upper Midwest. And suddenly he was kissing me. He had soft lips and warm hands, and I remember feeling so safe and content (and a little drunk. And a LOT surprised) wrapped up in him.

Until the standing ovation started. Apparently we weren't as alone as we had thought; someone inside had opened the blinds and there we were, making out in front of all of our friends and a few strangers. Hello, embarassment.

We decided to find a place where we could talk that was a little more private. Here's where the story diverges: There's what actually happened, what Canon says happened, and the urban legend that's been propagated by our friends for the last decade. Needless to say, I won't spoil the mystique here. I will say that I did not go home with Allison.

To this day, I'm still a little bit amazed that that moment actually happened to me. And when I use that frame of mind to look at the life we've built in the ten years since that moment, I'm still amazed. The Best Dog In The World is curled up at my feet. The Co-Best Dog In The World is sleeping on Canon's lap. Our daughter is asleep in her room down the hall. And us? Here we sit, in the home that we've built together, still making each other laugh.

And occassionally making each other roll our eyes and sigh, or scream, or cry, but it's so worth it.

It's all been so worth it.