A Romantic’s First Date

Dear Romance,

Every now and then I let myself daydream a little and my true romantic nature comes out. As you know, I am a romantic by heart but a realist by nature so sometimes it feels good to daydream. Today I let my mind wander and I created the perfect first date to go on…

I’d just returned home from the library with a satchel fully of books, ready to curl up on my bed and get lost for the afternoon in the lives, places and times of others. No sooner did I lie down and open my book then the phone rang.  I looked at the Caller ID and it was a number I didn’t recognize but I did remember that I had seen it on the Caller ID earlier that day.

“Hello?” I answered, expecting the caller to be inquiring for my roommate.

“Is Sunny there?” the male voice on the other end droned.

I was instantly relieved the technology for video phones hadn’t been solidified yet because the magnitude of the grin that lit up my face as I recognized the caller’s voice would have been embarrassing. “This is.”

“Hey, this is Stephan, I was calling to see if you’re hungry.”

“Starving.” I professed, ignoring the bowl of honey nut Cheerios that were still weighing down my flat stomach.

“Okay, well I’d like to take you out to lunch, I’ll pick you up in an hour.”

I tried to keep the smile out of my voice as I accepted his proposal and hung up the phone. I jumped off the bed and flung open my closet.  I eyed the contents skeptically keeping one eye on the window as I tried to judge what would be appropriate for an afternoon lunch in this 100-degree summer heat.  I finally decided on a dark blue jean skirt that hung to the middle of my calves, a bright orange tank top and a pair of heeled sandals.  I pulled my waist-length braids up into a half up do and applied a light layer of lip gloss and two coats of mascara. When the doorbell rang I took two deep breaths, paused for a few more seconds to dispel some of the eagerness I was feeling and went to the door.

Upon opening the door I was hoping to impress him, but I couldn’t hide the impression he immediately made on me.  While most of the time when I had hung out with him before, or even seen him around he looked nice, he was always casually dressed in a T-shirt and jeans.  Today he had on a yellow button down shirt with thin blue stripes running through it, light colored pants that brought out the mocha color of his skin, and his freshly shaved head completed the look. I prayed he wouldn’t notice the wobbliness of my knees as I tried to casually grab my purse and keys and shut the door behind me.

Once inside his vibrant blue Montero Sport I was able to catch some side glances at him as he drove.  I was melting from his handsome features and the gentleness of his smile, which he occasionally turned on me as he felt my stares prick his skin.  I was intent on controlling the urge to reach out and run the back of my hand against his smooth cheek, or run my freshly manicured nails over his bald scalp.  Instead, I looked forward again just as we were pulling up to Del Monicos, a seafood restaurant of extraordinary quality food, and expensive taste.  Again, he had caught me off guard and this time I couldn’t hide my surprise so I turned it into a joke.

“Is this where you take all your friends that are hungry, because you are taking feeding the hungry to a whole new level.” I quipped

He smiled as he walked around the car to get the door for me. I was afraid to stand up, lest my legs, which had gone weak in the knees, not support me.

We took our spots in the restaurant and after the waitress took our drink orders I pretended to peruse the menu, taking the time to calm my nerves, relax and just have some normal conversation with Stephan.  When I finally felt ready I closed my eyes and looked up into his hazel eyes staring at me intently.  I started a little because the intensity of the way he was looking at me suggested he fully intended for me to see him staring at me. His next words confirmed this,

“I thought about you the whole time I was gone.”

I decided to answer honestly, “I thought about you too, I tried to call you a few times.”

He reached across the table and took my hands in his thick, strong hands while continuing to look into my eyes. I felt he was looking directly into my heart and regardless that I know only God can see the truth of my heart, this gaze is what compelled me to open my mouth and speak a truth so honest, it even caused me to be surprised.

“ I have not stopped thinking about you since that very first night when you came to watch the game. I…um… I…” I took a deep breath and tried to start over, “ I feel more strongly about you than just a friend, I really feel that we would make a good couple, I would like to have you in my life as my boyfriend.”

Now, doesn’t The Word say “He who findth the wife findth a good thing”? What was I doing? Still the words were already out of my mouth and Stephan’s beautiful eyes continued to hold my gaze, his hands continuing to embrace mine in such a way that made me feel as if my whole body was wrapped inside his tender embrace.

The waitress came to sit our drinks down and it wasn’t until her departure that Stephan spoke. “I see the same thing, I don’t know you that well, but I want to know you better than you know yourself, I want to care for you, and protect you. You are someone I could grow with, someone I can really see myself being with.  Someone, I could not only tell my mom about but bring home to my mother.” His strong voice quelled my initial fears and as we continued to gaze at one another something new passed between us, an understanding. Suddenly food seemed frivolous, as we were full off of the unspoken promises we were already making to one another, of the love we both knew we would share, and off the expectation of a life spent together.  Nevertheless, we did order food and food did come. I picked at my salad, still not having the heart to tell Stephan how hungry I wasn’t.  During lunch our conversation was minimal, both of us lost in our own contemplation. I’m sure Stephan was thinking about the words I had uttered asking him to make a commitment to me.  ,I however, couldn’t help thinking about how important it is to start this relationship honestly, making Stephan privy to all the things that lie within my past and all the things that I have kept hidden for so long. I kept these things secret in hopes they would magically dissipate and someone could love me without having to love that part of me also.  It just didn’t seem right to bring up all of that negative stuff now when there was such a good feeling floating between Stephan and I. As the relationship matured and we went through the disclosure part of our relationship I would share those things with Stephan and at that point he could choose whether that would be something he could love or not.

After lunch we went back to my house and sat out on the balcony.  Stephan took my face in his hands and pulled it close to me, “I have done nothing but think about what you said during lunch, and I don’t know if this is how you usually start all your relationships, but it’s not how I start mine. So I’m nervous even saying this but, I see something in you, and that something makes me feel like this is the right thing to do. I believe that we can grow together, I believe that you will be good to me, I believe that you and I will make a positive impact in one another’s lives, and for that reason I want to try this.”

I stared at him speechless, my heart fluttering with joy, fear, and slight doubt. Should I tell him now about my past, I mean when was really a good time to reveal the things I’d done, the things that for so long have prevented me from letting another man into my broken, shattered life? Not now, I decided beaming widely and accepting the kiss Stephan planted on my lips.

Love Always,

Sunny

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