Once upon a time in a land not so far away….
You know us.
Otherwise, why are you bothering to read this?
Maybe you’re just bored.
Maybe you’reone of my adoring fans. Maybe you’rea former student of Matthew’s who googled his name.
But probably, most likely, you know us.
You know we met in 2007. We met online. We had our first date at a Campbell farmer’s market and a coffee shop table for two. We talked for hours. There were stories about inappropriate scandalous and much too loud interpretations of World War 2 poetry and getting butter on one’s cuff. There were stories about human remains in a trunk. There was a lot of coffee and a lot of laughter.
It was sort of meant to be.
We dated. We hung out in coffee shops, at the beach, in our apartments. We talked about everything, we created in-jokes, we listened to a podcast about cannibalism while eating Hot Pockets.
It was weird but it was meant to be,
We bonded. We attended functions. We talked tentatively about the future. We broke up and then got back together a week later.
It was dramatic, but we were meant to be.
We went to Portland because, why not. In a hotel room buffered by noise from a nearby bar and tired to the point of sever grumpiness we were united. And, we realized, in love.
It was scary, it was thrilling, it was too big to totally comprehend.
It was meant to be. It had been a year, we began to label ourselves. We had big talks about little things. There were holidays, meeting families. A trip to Tokyo. A tragedy. A closeness that was inexpiable to anyone who hasn’t been there. I moved and moved and moved again until we were sort of like neighbors, but Mathew was banished to Taft.
We endured. We felt that a test wasn’t bad. we would see. When it was finally over, we were happy to find that we still liked each other. We started to have little talks about bigger things. We made plans… plans that were months in advance. We figured we would still be together six months out. If, you know, it was meant to be. We went to London. We held hands and whispered sweet nothings. We hated our jobs and loved our friends and shared hobbies.We had a song, it summed us up perfectly and was born from a shared adventure that makes a pretty good story at parties. We didn’t move to England. We moved in together instead. Cramped in a tiny meant-for-one apartment on a busy street too close to downtown and plagued by drunken co-eds, we nursed our sick cat and bought our first together item and slowly tried on the word “we” We moved to Capitola and decorated “Our Place” with bits of each other’s history. We settled how books should be on shelves and what should hang where and if the syrup should live in the fridge or the cupboard. We agreed on most things. The new place became a home in record time; like it was meant to be.
We hosted parties and played with the new cat and reveled in the here and now because we knew it wouldn’t last. We moved to Fresno. Together, as a unit, entwined and full of plans and hopes we left the beach and breeze and security of friends. We’ll make it back, we told ourselves, if it is meant to be. We celebrated in our new home… the unpacking went quicker this time. We had a system, an understanding… a synchronicity of ease in getting along. We made new friends. we made new plans. We branched out in new hobbies. We were disappointed when some of our dreams didn’t come true, but optimistic that we still had time. We made big plans that hinged on little things. We counted the days. We met some goals and let others fade. We had picnics and adventures and felt time going by. We thought about what might be. We got pregnant. A bit earlier than expected, but still very much planned for and wanted. Her timing was meant to be. On the beach above where we had spent our happiest Friday nights listening to music and playing in the sand, we traded silver engagement rings and laughed with glee about all that was still ahead for us.
We survived being pregnant in the Fresno heat and we added Ella to our family. She, our little bundle of dark hair and lusty cries with Matthew’s chin and my ears and changing eyes like no one else’s, she was our miracle and our five year anniversary gift to each other.
And now, now she is a toddler and we have become parents and true partners in a way that neither of us could have imagined in that Campbell coffee shop. We are so excited to get married and to begin the next chapter of our lives together. Our happiness is pristine and our futures are bright. It is, after all, meant to be. … but again, you probably knew all that. Right? Well, if not, now you do.