Friday, December 28, 2007

The Anniversary

Today is an anniversary. Well, "today" being Friday. I can't remember off the top of my head which anniversary it is, though.

I mean, I know what it's the anniversary of; I just don't remember how many years it's been. Give me a moment...

Let’s see. Met in fall ’02, started “dating” in spring ’03, so that must mean that the first occurrence of the event which I “Celebrate” every 28th of December was in 2003. What was it that happened…only 4 years ago? Well, the evening (the 27th, actually) started with a movie, then I drove her to her house to drop her off. After hanging out for I have no idea how long, we migrated outside to visit before I left to go home. For the longest time, these words had bounced around my head (hers too, I knew), but they had never been said. Until early that morning when she practically blurted out “I love you, Brian.” I got real quiet, and then continued the conversation as though nothing had been said. I knew she meant the words. I knew that I wanted to return them, but something more than “I love you too” was warranted. It was probably a half-hour later before I finally told her, “I want you to know that I love you too.” It wasn’t a matter of being scared of saying it; it was a matter of how important to me it was that she know how deliberate the decision to say those words was.

We talked later about that night – on many occasions. There was nothing we didn’t discuss at times. We’d critique one another’s gaffes, blunders, and complement each other’s shining moments. We’d discuss what we were thinking at past times of strong emotions, and generally try to analyze everything past and present to help the future.

Anyway, that previous paragraph isn’t really germane. What is important is that you know how strong those words were. Both of us knew that in uttering those words, we’d be making a commitment to the other person. It was a commitment that we each knew would be as strong as marriage vows. Not as strong as marriage vows are legally, but as strong as they are if the wording is to be taken literally.

What commitment was implicit in this statement I made?

This one: I will be patient with you and kind to you. I will not envy (you or others), nor boast or be proud of my own accomplishments. I’ll not be rude or more concerned for my well-being than for that of others. I’ll not be easily angered and I’ll forget past wrongs committed against me. I will always protect, trust, hope, and persevere. This I promise unto you until one of us dies or you release me from it of your own volition.

Every one of those statements was in my conscious mind when I uttered those words 4 years ago. And I meant them with all my heart. In case you’re wondering, she has released me from that commitment (of her own volition), but it hasn’t helped me to feel any less obligated to keep those promises I made. I know that I’m not responsible for them in the same way that I once was, but I still find it difficult (to say the least) to “move on” with my life. I’ve not yet learned how to reconcile my past commitments to ‘her’ with potential future commitments I may want to make with another ‘her.’ I’ll have to release myself, I suppose. Mostly I just hope that I never have to confront that situation. I know there’s more than a few of you out there who hope/pray/expect that I’ll meet a girl in the near future and it’ll all be roses and we’ll get married and then my parents can have grandchildren…but I think I still hope that I’ve already met her and that it won’t be very long before she realizes it.

Goodnight, all. Farewell, December 28, 2007.

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