Tag Archives: the fiance

Have Lasso Will Love Again – The Conclusion

Part I

Part II

Part III

Part IV

Sidebar

Was I ready all that this relationship entailed?  I had come so far in such a short time.

But sitting in my friend’s condo that night, tears running down my face, the uncertainty of it all hit me. The risk I was taking by ignoring every divorce guide I’d read and embracing love again so quickly.

Because I had so much to lose. There were the new friends that I was becoming attached to.  There was the heartache I could suffer. Again. Was it all worth it?

I went to bed with a headache.

And then my phone buzzed with a text. “Goodnight beautiful.”

His signature good-night to me. His affection was unwavering. Was this guy for real?

It seemed a little late to be admitting doubt in the thing. After all, we had already said those three words to one another.

But I had heard those words before. Words that had failed me so badly. Lies, lies, lies that had been told.

So I faced the ultimate issue behind my doubt and insecurities. I needed to trust.

The events that led to my divorce represented the ultimate betrayal of truth. In the span of about two weeks the reality formerly known as my marriage fell like dominoes as the truths, the real truths became revealed in very painful ways.

I wish I could say that I woke up the next morning with more certainty, but I didn’t. I can say that I woke up still in love with him, not wanting to give up on what we had. Every day that passed, that love grew deeper. At the same time, every day, I healed a little more from the pain of my divorce.

And as our love grew, so did the trust. His love was true. His words were true. The skeptical heart knew, and she began to trust.

We took a trip together to L.A. in September.  During that trip, I found the confirmation I needed to believe this was more than a summer fling.

We enjoyed Halloween, Christmas, New Year’s. The time flew by.

The past faded.

We began to plan for the future.

At the same time, I continued to find myself. This relationship was so different than the past six years of my life. I could be me. There was no criticism. No judgment. No need to get anyone’s approval but my own. Because the boyfriend loved me for me. A refreshing yet foreign concept.

And early in 2009, while I did something girly, the fiance attended Comicon in Kansas City. He called me from the event, “Babe, what are your measurements?”

What? Who knows these things off the top of their heads?

“Uh, why?”

“I’m getting you something, just need your measurements.”

“I have no idea, I’m a size 4/6.”

“Ok.”

I showed up at the mansion later  that day and he had a photo on his i-phone — he had purchased a Wonder Woman costume for me. It was being finished by the costume designer to fit me.

Um, not just any Wonder Woman costume, but a  hand-sewn sexy, satin corset with real brass accents and spandex navy panties with white stars. Now, growing up I always liked Wonder Woman. Although I can’t say that I ever really had a grasp on her story.

With my costume in progress, I decided  it was time to figure out what this Wonder Woman chick was all about.

I began reading about her. The more I read, the more I loved it. This was a heroine who fought lies and the men who told them with truth. A lasso of truth.  I could get behind this. If only I had this years ago. Scratch the “if only’s.” Those experiences made me who I am today. It was part of the beauty and quirky of me.

Tapping this story, finding my inner heroine could be the final steps I would need to conquer my divorce demons. Yes, I was divorced. But that was okay.

A few weeks later, the costume arrived.

It fit.

Suddenly, I was the girl. The girl with the courage to wear a sexy, yet powerful costume. The girl not afraid to love and trust. The girl I knew I could be.

The girl who could trust.

Because this girl had the truth. And the boy.

It was the entire package.

So, when that boy got down on one knee on a bridge overlooking the Las Vegas strip a year after that first date, and asked me to spend the rest of his life with him, I said yes.

Yes to him. Yes to us.

It’s true. I found love again.

Editor’s note: Part of why I share this story is to help other women going through the pain of divorce. If you are recently divorced or separated, I’d love to hear your story. E-mail me at queenofquirky (at) gmail.com.

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Still got it?

This weekend I was reminded that I still have it.

It’s always good to be reminded of these things.

Especially after going to a work function and realizing that at age 32, I was the oldest one at the 20-something table.

Meh.

I secretly like the way I’ve aged. And Roomie likes to remind me that I give her hope.

Not sure what kind of hope I’m giving off, but I can tell her the secret lies in my bottle of Oil of Olay.

Oh, and lots of laughter.

Laughing keeps you young. Do not listen to Hollywood or the Real Housewives: Laugh lines are hot.

So there I was out in Westport, on a dance floor. It’s a place that is by-day restaurant/bar  by-weekend hipster hot spot with a DJ spinning out the tunes.

The fiance excused himself to the restroom and I inched my way out onto the dance floor. You know the inch. You start shaking your shoulders, bouncing a little bit, walk-dancing yourself into the crowd.

And then it happened.

“Wanna dance?”

Me? I looked around. Clearly this guy was not addressing anyone else.

“Oh, thanks, but my fiance is in the bathroom. I’m good.”

That was it. He walked away. I finished dance-walking into the crowd. But inside, I thought, “I still got it.”

And then I got to dance a little with the man of my dreams.

In a word? Fabulous.

What has made you feel fabulous lately?

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No honey. You can’t register for my butt.

He had a gun.

I had a check-list.

And it was smack dab in the middle of the holiday shopping frenzy.

What on earth were we thinking?

We weren’t even going to register. For the longest time we held firm that registering was just asking for gifts and that’s not what we are all about.

But then social conventions took their hold. We were told by multiple friends and family that we really ought to do this thing for people who will want guidance on their gift buying.

Despite our arguments that we don’t really expect gifts…which was quickly shot down by the argument that people will want to give gifts. End of story.

(To which I still say, I really don’t care if you give us a gift. Honestly. If you are invited to the wedding it’s because we want to celebrate with you.)

And because we procrastinated on the whole deal, we found ourselves at two large chain stores that sell home goods along with every other holiday shopper in Johnson County, KS Saturday afternoon.

It did not evoke any holiday spirit in me.

Or the wedding spirit for that matter.

As the fiance will attest to, I was really into it during the cooking section of store #1. Cooking is my thing. And I had a lot of fun playing  fantasy shopping spree with my kitchen in mind. Oh, the things I could fix…the fires I could catch…the wine we could drink.

But as we entered the bedding/linens area, my enthusiasm waned. I felt the pressure of having to make decisions about our home that could potentially stick with us forever.

Colors, fabrics and pillows. Oh my.

The fiance wasn’t helping.

Me: Oh, I really like this button detail on that pillow.

F: Wouldn’t that poke your head to lay on?

Me: You don’t lay on that pillow.

F: Huh?

Me: It’s a throw pillow. It goes on top of your sleeping pillows.

F: Huh?

Me: It’s for decoration.

F: So you put them on the floor?

Me: No. You put them up when you go to bed so the dog doesn’t lay on them.

F: How will I know what to do with them when you are out of town?

Me: sigh.

And it wasn’t just that. It was trying to pick towels that were both soft and fluffy and pretty.

And colors that didn’t make the fiance heave.

I began to feel like a home-design failure. I didn’t know which vases or picture frames or decor doo dads would look good together.

The fiance, who was even less into the home decor than I was, began to amuse himself by scanning my butt.

“Sensors say…seexxxy.”

He then took advantage of his new knowledge of throw pillows and scanned this hideous mauve feather-covered pillow.

It was very funny, I had to admit. But somehow, being in that store, surrounded by all those pretty things compelled me to tap my inner homemaker.

Only, when I tried to tap it, there wasn’t anything there.

Look what we are dealing with here:  we have two bar stools in our living room that we use to eat on when we sit at the couch. And speaking of couch. There is a hideous blanket hung up behind it to block the light and avoid a glare on the TV because picking out curtains makes me tremble.

By the time we entered the “artwork” portion of the store, I was done.

I could not make another decision, even if you told me that I could have all 12 pieces of the Calphalon cookware that had excited me two hours earlier.

It was time to turn the gun over to the nice sales staff and call it a day.

The fiance watched me literally walk out of the store.

Was it something he did/said?

No, I told him. I just couldn’t absorb any more color combinations, style decisions or Christmas crowd dodging. I was through.

But there was still an entire store to get through before we could call it a day. (We decided to register at two stores to give people more options and because one has better cookware than the other and one has electronics and the other doesn’t. Guess who goes with each store?)

Luckily at store #2 we actually had some items to purchase for ourselves. So we were able to distract ourselves me with shampoos and hand lotions.

Happy thoughts. Happy thoughts.

And then with the check-out line in view, I just sort of settled into it in the glossy-eyed way of someone heavily medicated. Sure. Scan that box of candy. It will be a good option for the budget- conscious.

Yeah, we really need that Playschool Fake Food set. It will come in handy when I don’t want to cook.

We were done. There were no more decisions to be made. The gun was returned and I could sit in the car for the 20 minute ride to the mall and rest my feet.

What? Did you say mall?!

Yup. Mall. To the jewelry store to purchase my pretty, sparkly wedding band.

That wasn’t such a bad thing.

And so, we are now registered. My band has been purchased. And the clock ticks on closer and closer each day to February 27.

I couldn’t be happier. Even in our un-fashionable house with our crappy cookware.

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Dutch Oven

Wedding planning is stressful.

It especially hurts the pocket book. (That’s North Carolinian for wallet. I like to throw out my old North Carolinian lingo sometimes. It makes me feel well-exposed to a variety of United States sub-cultures.)

You can actually hear the tension in the Quirky household as we are trying to figure out why exactly we didn’t elope to Vegas? Or maybe that was just Gertie farting. Whatever. It’s stressful.

But we know that in the end, celebrating our nuptials with our friends and family will ultimately be worth it to us. We are keeping it very tacky cheap. You can follow more about that on the Quirky Wedding blog.

Meanwhile, I’m trying to keep us healthy and satisfied in the food department without spending crazy amounts of money at the grocery store. I felt pretty good about the meals I planned this week. And then I kind of messed it up with a work function that went late on Tuesday, but my intentions were good…

Monday – Chicken Satay with brown rice and snow peas

Tuesday – I planned for Sauteed Tilapia with Lemon-Peppercorn Pan Sauce and a pea risotto.  I didn’t feel like cooking after that work function, so I made a frozen spinach, mushroom and chicken pizza.

Wednesday – We will have this on Friday or Saturday or sometime before the cauliflower turns into a science experiment in the fridge. Cauliflower & Chickpea Curry. No real recipe yet. Going to wing it based on several I have read. Served with brown rice.

After discussing this menu with the fiance the other night. I blurted out, “I really want a dutch oven.” I don’t know where exactly it came from. I have no business thinking of new things for myself at this time.

But, truth be told, I have this really awful cookware that would be really embarrassing should any foodie wander into my kitchen.

We were laying in bed and the fiance got a wicked look in his eyes.

Oh no. Not that* kind of Dutch oven.

* I apologize for stooping to potty humor today. I’m tired, busy and moderately stressed.

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Our McChristmas Fight 2009

It was epic.

The McChristmas (Tree) fight of 2009.

A battle of traditions. And a quirky couple who had to merge two very different traditions. Specifically ornament traditions.

You don’t mess with me when it comes to ornaments.

<—- just look at those beady red eyes. I’m holding last year’s ornament.

THE ornament given to me by my mother each year.

Thematically gifted for each year that passes.

See? That ornament has a picture of the Country Club Plaza on it. Which is where I moved after my divorce. (Because I had always wanted to live near there. And because I could. And why wouldn’t I?)

Isn’t my mom clever? (Truth be told: she had to regift that ornament from her own tree because she looked high and low for a Plaza ornament but couldn’t find one. But STILL. It’s the tradition that counts.)

Every year. I own an ornament symbolizing every year of my life since seventh grade.

The moose playing volleyball? Eighth grade. Only I didn’t play volleyball. I um, didn’t quite make the team. But I was the manager and that is a VERY important roll….

Backpack? No, not Kindergarten. It was my senior year in high school. (Because every high school senior caries a backpack with a bear and a pencil in it.)

Corvette with gifts? I think even my mom will admit that one was a stretch. But it was meant to symbolize 2000. The year I graduated from college and struck out on my own as a reporter in Rocky Mount, NC.

But let’s not be selfish here. It’s not like my mom won’t give one to the fiance each year. This is the tradition that keeps giving.

And so, I had visions of our first Christmas tree. Decked with white lights (the only acceptable lighting in my opinion) and the lot of my sentimental ornaments.

It would be so sweet. And as the years passed, we would add to it with the ornaments collected together.

My vision was brought to a screeching halt.

Someone else had an ornament tradition. 10 years ago, a young 20 year-old bachelor decided he would enlist his buddies to help him deck out his Christmas tree.  So he did what he did best: he threw a party.

And invited all of his friends to bring him an ornament for his tree.

Oh, they brought ornaments. Every year. (hmmm….notice anything familiar?)   Some more “appropriate” than others. Most very funny and light-hearted in nature. Many hand-made, including the beloved McRib ornament. Crafted so cleverly from several boxes of the elusive McRib.

It was time to set a date for the 10th annual ornament party and we had a big problem.

How could we put my sweet little moose playing volleyball on the same tree with McRib boxes? These two traditions just weren’t going to work. We needed a solution.

Him: Well, why don’t we pick from the best of my ornaments and then put yours on too?

Me: OR, we could have a special tree for the “adult” ornaments and then have a family ornament tree?

Oh, that didn’t go over well at all.

He heard: Your ornaments are crap and need to be separated.

And so the fight began. Somehow, I missed his first offer to compromise. (I’m a little silly about listening at times.)

All I could think of was how could we manage years and years of both traditions? And what about when we have kids? Some of his ornaments might not be child-friendly. And I wanted to be sure there was room (in our lives) on the tree for children.

He persisted.

I persisted.

He threw up his hands and said we’d cancel the party.

But that’s not what I wanted. I just wanted a compromise (remember, I didn’t quite catch that first offer.)

Tears were shed.

I told him not to cry.

I’m just kidding. It was me.

And finally, in a moment of clarity, I suggested that we take the best of his ornaments and all of mine (because there are many more of his than mine.) And he laughed because it’s exactly what he had suggested in the first place.

And I ate a little crow, but it’s ok.

Because we figured out how to merge two very different traditions. And, at the same time, offering a hard-core challenge to our friends (because mine are invited too.) May the best ornaments win a permanent place on our tree.

So bring on the McRibs this year. I’ll be happy to place the best of the best right next to my little moose.

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Have lasso. Will love again. Part III

Part I

Part II

Sidebar

I looked up at him from the flowers, a little bewildered.

Doyouwannamakeout?

And as my brain translated his mushed together words, I remembered our conversation about kissing before the first date.

Um, sure? I’m a relatively hip, cool 30 year-old chick, dating multiple men, making out with strangers … why not kiss this red-headed boy before I kick his butt in skee-ball?

I leaned forward and our lips touched (this is weird, really weird) and we started to kiss (this is good, really good).  And then the kiss was over, and I was still standing there, holding a bouquet of flowers looking at this date of mine whose lips I had just been locked with.

What was his last name again?

He opened the car door for me. I didn’t know what to say, so I blurt out something about how he looked like his picture. He laughed, closed the car door and got in on his side. I pulled a gift out of my purse – a weird little pickle statuette that I thought he would find funny.

The ice had been broken, gifts had been exchanged, but there were still first-date nerves kicking around randomly  in my stomach like me trying to keep up with a kick-boxing class. 

We chit chatted all the way to Dave & Buster’s. He was easy to talk to, even if he was little hard to understand at times.

Understandably, he wanted to know why a seemingly normal [attractive, successful, talented, outgoing, smoking hot, sexy…oops, I inserted those.] woman such as myself ended up divorced at age 30. I promised him the story over dinner.

He listened as I told my story while we enjoyed beers before our food.

He shared that he has been in several serious relationships, recently ending a 10-month romance with a live-in girlfriend. 

I kind of already knew that, since I had stalked him on Facebook. Her profile was public and I had also checked her out – tall, blonde,  attractive and seemingly into all the same things he was into. She was also a foodie — someone who I thought would be a good friend to have.  She kind of seemed perfect for him, but what did I know? I couldn’t be intimidated by his past, just like he couldn’t be intimidated by mine.

Dating was so weird.

Besides, I was still trying to force myself to have fun and not get tied down. So while I was enjoying our date, I was trying not to map out our future.

But with him, everything was so easy.

After dinner, we loaded up some Dave & Busters game cards and hit skee-ball. True to my promise I beat him. (Aside from that game and one fluke game of Trivial Pursuit, it stands as one of  the only times I beat him at anything.)

After an hour or so we had enough tickets to claim some prizes in the ticket redemption shop. What to get, what to get.

When you are on a first date, these decisions matter.

IMG_1081

We discovered a pair of battery-powered whirly headbands. Dork-dom to the Nth degree. Awesome. We wore them out of the restaurant, holding hands with stupid plastic headbands buzzing above us.

But my heart was buzzing louder.

Have you ever been on a first date and you just.wanted.it.to.be.over?

This was not that date. With the kiss out-of-the-way, and more kisses during dinner and games, there was no anxiety, only a really strong attraction that was growing and growing. Oddly, it felt like a third or fourth date.

Even though it was well after 11 p.m. on a Sunday night, I couldn’t get enough of him. He took me to his favorite bar in Westport. We had a drink and more conversation. Then, he saw some friends, “c’mon I want to introduce you!”

Woah. Introduce me? On the first date?

After I met several people, he took me to another bar where one of his two roommates was working. Later, the roommate referred to me as the Alyson Hannigan chick. (This became the inspiration for my Band Camp Girl Halloween costume that year)

At some point, I had to go home. He came with me and we talked and kissed way into the wee hours of the morning. (Nothing else happened. It was PG rated. Ok, maybe PG-13.)

The next morning, exhausted, deliriously happy and bed-heady, I walked him down to the front gate. We kissed again as the elevator opened and out walked hot neighbor.

Hot neighbor who was so gorgeous that I often lost my ability to form sentences when I was around him. Hot neighbor who was a lawyer, worked out regularly, kept a great tan and was super sweet. Hot neighbor who could feasibly still think I was on the market and had never seen me with a boy.

I could care less. “Hi, [insert hot-neighbor’s real name],” I said. “This is  [KCFilm Guy.]”  Another kiss and then I was back upstairs to get ready for work.

That night, I had several friends over for a dinner party I’d been planning for a few weeks. I invited KCFilmGuy to stop by if he wanted to, after dinner. It was past 9 p.m., and any normal night I would consider cleaning up my kitchen and heading to bed after a few glasses of wine and a good meal.

But KCFilmGuy wanted to know if I wanted to come to his place and see a movie.

So began a week of absolutely no sleep whatsoever.

KCFilmGuy had a job that started after noon each day. My job started at 7:30 a.m.  I began to feel the effects of my sleepless week.

I wasn’t sure this was going to work out. I really needed my sleep and it seemed KCFilmGuy never slept. At 9 p.m., he’d only been  home from work for an hour or so and his evening was just getting started. At 9 p.m., I had already run a few miles, taken a shower, watched a few shows, eaten dinner and was thinking about bedtime.

But love is a funny thing. It keeps you going, even when you otherwise would be falling asleep at your computer during the day.

What were we doing? We had spent every night together since our date. And when we weren’t together, we were texting. This was so very different from the sporadic but reliable texts and dates I experienced with the other guys I had been seeing.

And speaking of them, what was I supposed to do about them? It was clear that I really, really liked KCFilmGuy, but I was trying not to settle down with anyone. And they were both really great guys. Was I ready to tell them good-bye?

I hadn’t had a chance to figure out the answers to these questions. I was just so tired and happy and confused…so, I put off thinking and decided to live in the moment.

But sometimes, you are confronted with a choice when you least expect it.

It was passed 1 a.m. on Thursday night. KCFilmGuy had made me a late dinner of  his famous tuna casserole (I didn’t have the heart  to tell him I  made tuna helper the night before and also had leftovers for lunch, so the last thing I wanted to put into my mouth was more tuna.)

We were talking on his front porch – we had really lucked out in that we only lived 1.5 miles away from one another – and then he presented something I wasn’t quite prepared for.

“I was thinking that I don’t want to date anyone else. I really like what we have here and I want to see where it can go.”

To be continued…

Part IV

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Quirkyville Quips: Lizard people

The scene: We are watching V, ABC’s remake of a popular science fiction mini-series where lizard-like aliens disguised as humans visit our planet. (The remake is a full series, not a mini-series.)

Fiance: (Arbitrarily to the television) What part of “don’t trust anyone” did he not understand!?

Me: If aliens came to our planet, would you trust me?

Fiance: No. You couldn’t trust anyone.

Me: But what if I was one of the nice aliens who just wanted to be peaceful and marry a human?

Fiance: How would I know that? In that situation, you really wouldn’t be able to trust anyone.

Me: But that would mean that I am a lizard now.

Fiance: Are you saying you are a lizard?

Me: No, but in the hypothetical lizards-take-over-the-world-future, I want you to be able to trust me.

Fiance: Well, I don’t think I would trust you. But it probably wouldn’t matter because we aren’t important enough that we would have the information that the aliens are dangerous, so maybe I would.

(Fiance wanders into the kitchen. Clearly he is not as phased in this potential wrinkle to our future marriage as I am…)

Me: (Shouting into the kitchen) Maybe we should include something about the lizard invasion in our vows, that way you will trust me….

Fiance: Sticks his face back into the living room and rolls his eyes.

Me: What? I’m serious.

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