We met when The Kid was 3 1/2. The Man left Seattle shortly before The Kid's sixth birthday party; we're now beginning preparations for his eighth. And in all that time, we've never been together. Not really. Not completely.
When he left, I didn't think he'd ever return. On that last day, I watched him drive away and imagined that the spare hangers, drooping ficus, and economy-sized bottle of syrup would soon be all that was left of him in my life. By the time he called me from the side of a Montana highway, I knew I couldn't live without him.
But I didn't believe that living with him would ever be an option.
That belief persisted - to greater and lesser degrees - and ultimately led to our breakup last summer. (Except that it wasn't really "ultimately," given that the split was horribly unsuccessful and short-lived). When he broke the silence a few months later to wish me a happy birthday, it took only the sound of his voice to bring me back. If I were an annoyingly bad actress who appears to be perpetually on the verge of a sneeze, I'd tell you that he had me at hello. But I'm not, and he didn't. He did have me though.
And so it began again, though not with much greater hope for a happy ending. There are a number of things keeping him in Dallas, you see. Employment, for one; his daughters, for two and three. And while, once upon a time, the daughters' hiatus from Seattle was supposed to be as temporary as his own, it is now quite possible that they'll be Texans for many years to come.
So there is no reason for me to be hopeful, and yet I am. I feel like something big is about to happen. Something big and scary and good. And if I'm allowed to pick my somethings, I'd very much like this one to be a big and scary and good Seattle-bound boyfriend. With sprinkles on top.