the water got high and she never got dry

Tuesday, July 11, 2006

but now I’m old, yea I’m well past twenty-five

Last night I had a really nice birthday dinner with some of my favorite people. Good food and some damn good martinis – so smooth and sweet you don’t realize how strong they are. Dangerous. The mojito martini I had is now one of my favorite drinks ever. And when we got home, Husband to Be made me cupcakes! If there’s anything sexier than a good-looking man in a button down shirt with the sleeves rolled back making me cupcakes because he knows how much I love them, I don’t know what it is.

I turned 27 yesterday. When I was a kid, 27 was the randomly selected magical age at which I would be a successful, sophisticated woman, fresh out of grad school and in a great job, married to someone I’d met in school. Yes, even when I was a kid, grad school was part of my future, thanks to the path laid out by my dad years before I could even comprehend what a Ph.D was. I thought it was what everyone did.

They told me when I started that the program average was 5 years. I’ve known one student who got out of here in 5. So I’m one year behind “schedule.” I’m not married yet, but I’m pretty close, which I still find amazing.

Am I everything I ever wanted to be in a person yet? Not even close, but I’m getting there. The hellishness of school and the identity issues of being a twenty-something aside, I’m happy with where the tides have swept me so far.

Maybe I gush too much about the joy I’ve found with Husband to Be. But honestly, it’s not from a sense of smugness or complacency. I know how lucky I am to have found him. He’s brought something rare and special and holy into my life and I don’t ever, ever want to take that or him for granted. If I gush, it’s to remind myself that love like this doesn’t come around every day and to keep the fires of awe and gratitude burning brightly.

And because I haven’t forgotten what it took to get me here. Aside from some serious good luck, I think I’ve paid my dues in heartbreak, stupidity, mistakes, loneliness and unrequited love. And the pain of middle school dances, at which all the other things can be found.

I haven’t had a hard knock life by any means but it hasn’t been all smooth sailing through a turbulent and often painful home life as a child and teen, which makes me cherish all the more the bliss and contentment of the home I have now. It buffers me from hurts big and small, the stress of school, and the ups and downs of a still complicated relationship with my parents. The noise of past pain has faded and I am happy to be in the quiet.

in life I know there is lots of grief
but your love is my relief

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