Anita- Fifth Date: So Simple! So Grand!

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David is returning from his weekend away. I still have my son with me. It’s Sunday September 11th. We do another quick drive-by meeting. I sneak out to walk with him in the neighborhood park.

Geez! He looks scrumptiously handsome. This never gets old! I’m drawn to him as if he’s a magnet the size of the Eiffel Tower and me a small dust speck of iron!? INSANE!!

David says ‘I couldn’t tell you the words last time because they fall short in describing how I feel.’ We halt. He looks into my eyes as he declares what I know already- ‘I love you Anita.’

If the skies had burst into fireworks I didn’t notice. I closed my eyes and tried to digest this moment. His arms are around me. I am madly-outrageously in love and intensely-ecstatically grateful. It feels dreamy. It doesn’t help that it’s been eleven days and nights now that I haven’t allowed my body any sleep…still terrified of letting go of this surreal and impossibly perfect dream I find myself in. I open my eyes and he is still present and real! I allow my senses to take him in. I look into his eyes, hold him close and kiss him.

I close my eyes again and feel his spirit….and I’m totally engulfed by our profound and tenacious spiritual connection….I sense everything he’s feeling and it matches right back, with a vengeance, all of the intensity I feel inside of me too for him.

He repeats again that he loves me. I bury my face in his neck. I find myself inhaling him…as if I’m returning from a near death drowning experience. He’s the oxygen I require to breathe again…to return to the living. I feel my soul awakening…coming alive after years of being lost, scared and suffocated.

Then it’s time to split again!

Soon after he leaves he finds one more way to completely shake up my world, to confirm that he’s truly my ultimate twin flame! I need to backtrack to explain. Growing up outside of the country of my origin I’d become accustomed to men describing me as exotic and it always made me cringe- as if reminding me that I didn’t belong as I was struggling to embrace my own differences. So over time I had longed for someone to tell me the exact opposite and in that spirit I made up a passcode in my heart for my soul-mate! Crazy thing is that just a few days before meeting David one late night I spoke those words out aloud to put it into the universe- ‘Soul-Mate! If you do exist and if you can hear me’ I summoned out ‘if we ever find each other…remember to tell me this passcode so I will know it’s really you’- I had said ‘Tell me when you are with me you feel at home!’ I had made this wish with all of my heart so resolutely that it had brought me to tears.

Now here we are…and this unbelievable text pops up moments after he leaves- ‘You know I just figured out something. When I am with you I feel I am home- finally!’

SHIVERS!! TEARS!! So simple! So grand!

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David – Fifth Date: Get the Fork. I’m Done.

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Our fifth date takes place on September 11, 2016.  It’s been three days since I have seen those eyes. That smile. That hair.  I can wait no longer. I come back from Charlottesville with my heart bursting to see her. We do the 7-11 shuffle again and find ourselves in that same park, walking along as only new lovers can. Slowly. As if in a trance.

We talk about our connection. Our fingers can find no purchase on the other’s hand. We must touch and caress as a blind person must to “see.”  Her beautiful hair is on my shoulder. Her head rests one my arm as I fall further into this wonderful abyss of peace and calm.

I stop and pull her close, locking in with those dark, piercing eyes. “I love you,” I hear myself say. The words pour from my mouth as though bottled up under pressure for many years.  I feel free. I am vindicated. I admit to her and to myself what my heart has known from the beginning – that she has been chosen for me. There is no logical reason that this would be so but we left logic and reason behind long ago.

She is at peace. I can see that her heart is full too. We have a collective serenity that is palpable. We are submerged in a bubble-filled pocket of love. We are now THAT couple. I always looked down on those couples. I always believed that those couples never dealt with reality. Life was hard. A partner disappointed. That was life. You need to deal with it.

Turns out, that’s not so. It’s only true if you haven’t found your truest partner. It’s only true if your greatest passion in your life and your partner are not the same person.  Anita and I are blessed to have that. We do not take it for granted. We do not take it lightly. We know that it is a great, miraculous gift only granted to a select number of people. We cherish the gift. We are complete. We are in love. We now begin to live our lives not as two, but as one.

I melt into her as she does into me. The lines that separate us blur, and I begin to hold an image of just one being. She is perfect for me. I am perfect for her. We are perfect together.  Stick a fork in me. I’m done. We are in love. Full stop.

 

Anita-Fourth Date! Another unconventional experience!

September 8th! Another first! Another unconventional experience one way or another!

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David is heading out of town for the weekend to spend time with his daughter leaving straight from work but we realize we are mutually in agony at the mere thought of splitting apart for a few days -so he says ‘let’s have a drive-by meeting anywhere….a café…a parking lot near you…wherever….just for a few minutes because I need to see you before leaving!’

I have my 13 year old son with me that evening. I share joint custody and it’s my night with him. Now-I have always imagined it would be him someday who’d be sneaking around with little excuses to catch up with some girl he fancies- around our neighborhood dépanneur/convenience store or something. I never imagined it would be me! LOL. My son is wise for his years and I don’t want him suspecting anything so I dress in casual shorts and a t-shirt but dab on a touch of makeup (probably the give-away here) as I announce that I’m making a quick run out to the store while he’s playing video-games. GEEZ!! I’m that mom now!! YIKES!! In six years since leaving my marriage my son has never been exposed to me dating- Period! So this is awkward!? Not for my son. You see-he found out about David immediately after our first date accidentally by spying on a conversation between me and my best friend and he’s apparently cool with it from the start. Go figure! This evening although he’s focused on his video games he quickly glances back at me…smiles approvingly as he checks me out and then knowingly says ‘You look nice. Take your time and have fun!’ – Ummm-Wait!? What!? Blush!!- I’m taken aback and brain says- ‘No- don’t ask- don’t process the implications!’- OK so not responding!? Yup! I RUN OUT!

David is in his car at the Seven-Eleven- parking lot- and I see/feel him glowing! It still surprises me every time I lay eyes on him that he’s even more dashingly handsome than I remember (and I remember him as a total hottie at all times)- and every minute…in just over a week now..(?!!)- has made him exponentially that much more powerfully desirable to me as if that love at first sight thing that had happened on date number one- hadn’t done me in completely already yet….As if!!…Every time I see him I’m clearly falling in deeper and deeper in this rushed and uncontrollable way I’d never known before! Hard to wrap my head around the idea that it’s only been eight/nine days!!? HOW!!?? How is any of this even possible!!!???

I suggest we take a walk around this little park near my house. It’s a gorgeous evening with the sun setting… softly- kissing the grass and the trees with its brilliant touch and sprinkling around golden dust all around us. There is always fairy dust around us it seems. We stumble upon a family of deer- and they too sense our foolish lovers’ oblivious state of being- as if they understand we are totally harmless to them and clearly obsessed only with each other so they carelessly don’t budge…in fact… I think the father deer may have even rolled his eyes at us as we stopped before them to passionately share a kiss…..but they don’t run away and continue on with grazing the grass- their dinner right beside us.

When David and I are together we cannot stop smiling the entire time- since our meeting in fact. His eyes continue to sparkle brightly at me as they always do but throw in that remarkably gorgeous smile on his lips and I literally feel all of my being drawn into him- or perhaps evaporating away into heaven- YUP! That’s the only way I can describe what happens to me in his presence. I want to just inhale him for air.

Then-again too soon- it’s time to go! As he’s leaving I surprise us both as I look into his eyes and declare with all my heart and soul unexpectedly ‘I love you David!’- No words in response from him but I don’t need it for reassurance. I’d never felt and seen anyone respond to those words from me- before in my entire life- the way that he does- as if his entire being was soaking it in…. he’s accepting of it…as if he was allowing some massive wave to pick him up and carry him away in complete surrender. I feel him breathe in deeply and hold his breath. I watch him close his eyes as I feel his body melting into my arms as I repeat it again and again ‘I love you David. I love you so much!’
Soon after he drives away and I miss him instantly.

This is something I have also with David. Every minute I’m with him I am painfully aware that there is this imaginary hourglass nearby with crystal-sands slipping away before my eyes…I want to hold each moment and preserve it though knowing/frustrated that I can’t….and when he leaves I instantly begin to ache mentally, physically and spiritually for his return- and every moment in-between feels like an entire gulf that I need to swim through agonizingly to close that gap between us. I know I will never take anything about this incredible man for granted.

Nine days since our meeting only!? WOW!!! Definitely a different dimension of time we’re caught in here together. We are both acutely aware of the ethereal nature of this connection we share!

David-Fourth Date: A Walk Into Another Dimension

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September 8 – At this point, we’ve known each other exactly one week and a day. I am headed to Charlottesville for the weekend and won’t be able to see Anita for three days. Three days by our calendar may as well be a life sentence on a desert island. I am afraid in that time I will befriend a volleyball named Wilson, lose 50 pounds and eat uncooked crab, in all of its slime. I don’t want that outcome so I decide I need to see her one last time.

Anita has her son tonight so her place is out. On the phone, she is a bit anxious about the subterfuge of coming out to meet so we agree that a trip to 7-11 seems like a good cover story.  Everyone’s gotta get their Slurpee on, right? I half expect her to show up wearing plastic glasses with a big nose and mustache. It turns out that her son is already wise and tells her to have a good time.

We meet in the parking lot of 7-11 and embrace in one of those grab-and-hold-em hugs – as though holding the water in a bag full of holes and the only way to stop the pressure from squeezing out is to press it close to you. That’s the way it feels, anyhow. We decide that the 7-11 was a good place to meet but not a good place to spend quality time together.

Instead, we walk in a nearby park arm-in-arm. That’s not quite the right description.  We hold one another the way you might hold onto a dear, elderly person: gingerly, tenderly but with resolve. This one’s not going anywhere. Our cadence remains unchanged: walk, gaze, stop, kiss. Repeat.

The words we speak seem to float between us – as though they were conceived long ago but just recently remembered. The deer notice us, cocking an eye our way – their twitching ears alert to sounds that perhaps only they can hear. At this moment, I feel as though we share an understanding of a spirit world that is sensed but unseen.

Anita and I agree on shared memories. Common feelings. An illogical familiarity. But that is impossible. I can count the days since we’ve met on my fingers. What is happening here? We are carried along on a river of feelings – all of them overwhelming, awash with a great comfort that we have – at last – arrived at home.

As we part, Anita tells me tells me that she loves me. My soul smiles even while my brain goes on Red Alert. This can’t be. It makes no sense…except it does. I know that I feel it too – though I cannot say it yet, and I tell her so. She sees it in my eyes. She smiles. We hug. We gaze. We kiss. Somewhere a star just twinkled a little brighter because an angel got its wings.

In under thirty minutes, this little park has turned into a wonderland. Transformed from a place where children play; where parents dote, smile and look for other kids to keep theirs company to a place where dimensions meet.

I have always imagined that reality is like a series of stacked, transparent chessboards where if you look down from the top, you just see a two-dimensional game. But viewed from the side, it is more complicated. Each piece has its own board – its own dimension.

I am now self-consciously aware that I have left my two dimensions behind and I am now seeing the whole chessboard for the first time. This is real! I am left with a depth perception that I never knew existed. I am in awe. I stand in reverence. I am so grateful to be given this glimpse. To know that not only have I been given this view across the universe but that in the breach my beautiful Anita has been standing there waiting for me all along.

Je t’aime, cheri.

Third Date!! Spell bound & Bungee Jumping -into the ‘abyss’!

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At the end of our official 2nd date I ask David if we are still meeting tomorrow- Tuesday. His expressive eyes say ‘no brainer-right?’ and immediately words follow with ‘Of course and sure!’ Yes I did giggle aloud with happiness. Made it tiny bit easier to let him out of my sight that afternoon when I dropped him off.

I have to admit something funky here- that since meeting David I did not sleep a wink. I was in full on insomnia mode! No wonder I almost lost my car in the parking lot at the airport on that second date! I was overwhelmed with this intense fear daily that if I closed my eyes…if I lost touch with the present moments in any way…if I fall asleep…I may rudely awaken to a realization that this is all but just an illusion.

I was absorbed into and obsessed with this handsome man in my life- nearly-phantom-like and so perfect in ways I’d never known anyone before – and that this amazing soul is drawn so intensely to me also-this I couldn’t begin to wrap my head around. Ah! And my heart keeps bugging out as if it’s under a powerful spell or thoroughly intoxicated with the strongest drugs on the planet.

Meanwhile my best friend is sending me meditational video links to help me fall asleep at night but the more I try, the more obvious it is that I am like an overzealous child obsessed with an unimaginably grand Christmas present and with absolute zero intention of letting it out of my mind’s eye-whether by day or by night!

My everyday life …whatever that was before David entered into the story…just had to come to a halt ….to allow me to pause and step away into this waking dream I couldn’t comprehend logically.

In this state….blindly and trustingly following my heart…floating from moment to moment, from one text to the next,…one call to the next and all with nail biting enthusiasm and anxiety awaiting… counting down….the hours to see him again.…like a champagne bottle about to pop and fizz out any minute..(!)?..… in this loony- spirit….arrives date number three- on Tuesday September 6th.

We meet in Hyattsville at Bus Boys & Poets after work. David has arrived before me and is seated outside. There are flower pots I have to navigate around to reach him. Above him there are overhanging strings of glowing light bulbs across the restaurant patio seating. WOW! Can this get any more surreal? The weather is magical too…because it’s also that time of year…when summer is wrapping up and the crisp fall air is quietly announcing its arrival in small ways…like with unexpected gentle breeze softly caressing my skin as I make my way towards him…it adds to the blush I already feel inside. There is something in the air that also commands nostalgia….like it’s announcing that this is a momentous occasion…a time marking endings and beginnings in more ways than we can even comprehend yet… so I feel with every step like I’m leaving earth again….walking into an ethereal place or a deep-dream-state as we make eye contact…as his smile permeates through my soul…..as he gets up to hug me and pull my chair…..as I giggle and stumble…. And I’m once again filled with excitement and in anticipation of discovering everything there is to know about my newly found ultimate soul mate.

David is beaming! His smile is irresistible and all of his energy is just shinning so brightly. It’s totally hypnotizing!! He reaches over and kisses me randomly between intense conversations. I wonder if anyone will shout out at us to ‘get a room already!’- Are we now that couple? LOL! Once again everything and everyone disappear. We talk and talk…and there are no secrets…whether discussing past, present or future…I am still learning about his life’s journey and love how he wants to share everything and if I ask a question he answers me truly….even when he’s unsure of how I will respond. I love this about him…it’s just one more detail that adds to the inexplicable allure of my gorgeous radiating David.

BTW- He really does that- radiates-like light- inside and out!

Our hands remain intertwined the entire time we’re there. We do kiss a lot randomly….forgetting there are others around. If anyone’s watching- well we don’t notice. I can’t tear my eyes away from him easily.

Like all great moments though….I’m painfully aware that soon its closing time and we have to split again. I can’t get enough of David- whether it’s looking into his eyes or watching his lips move…or actually struggling to pay attention and listen to what he’s saying….because I am fascinated by and drawn also to all his words and stories…but I also love just listening to his voice…it’s soothing but also uplifting like a hymn sung just for my soul.

It’s terrifying how deeply and completely I am drawn to this man. Thinking back to him saying ‘let’s take it slow’ on that second date- I can’t help but wonder if we didn’t know already in our hearts that we are – holding hands-and bungee jumping together- head on- into that ‘abyss’!?

Thank goodness for it ALL too!!

David – Third Date: A Proper Dinner

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Our third date is our first proper date (which should always involve dinner). We meet at Busboys and Poets in Hyattsville, MD on Tuesday, September 6th. I get there early and since it is a perfect September evening I get a table outside. I have my laptop with me and decide to work a bit. I am still on a cloud from our kiss and conversation the day before. I don’t have to wait long.

This is the first time I’ve seen her in a dress and my heart skips. She floats as she walks. That smile catches me and we reach for one another, as if grabbing for a dear friend once lost, now found. I pull her in close with a kiss, oblivious to the raised eyebrows and eye-rolls of the other restaurant patrons. I take her in through my nose. She has a fragrance that is both sweet and tart. Perfect compliment for my senses while I drink in the sight of her. She is a feast to behold.

She sits and we smile shamelessly. No one has said anything funny. But a smile shows our joy. We are happy to be together. We feel safe. In one other’s gaze, we are at home – despite our surroundings. Today it is a posh restaurant with an emerging moon where young people surround. They chatter and giggle as she moves her chair closer to mine – another sign of how we hungry we are to close any gap between us.

We order soup but the food gets ignored. We talk. We galk and the glint in our eyes soon turns to an unbreakable smile. I listen to her stories – as fantastic as they are unbelievable. She is like a mythological creature. Sensuous, wise, beautiful. She is there to teach me the lessons she has held in her heart since before we met.

I sit in rapt attention. I ask questions. I am curious and want all the details. “Was that your mother’s sister?” I ask for clarification. The stories flow from her lips like the Tales of an Arabian Night. There are deserts in Dubai with tents full of collectors’ cars because the nomads now have money. They reach across continents to Detroit, LA and Stuggart and pull back exotic cars to the hot, arid surroundings they know. I can’t help but wonder how they keep the sand out of the exhaust maninfolds.

We pay for our dinner and then remember that we need a to-go cheeseburger for a friend. We are told it will take another fifteen minutes. Perfect. More time together is our dessert. My chance to walk and put my arms around this gorgeous woman. We walk slowly, and although we are both tall we take the small steps of an old couple, long in love and grateful for another day to spend together. We shuffle along, with her on my right, my arm around her waist and her head leaned tenderly to the left on my shoulder.

We stop every 20 feet or so for a kiss. Each kiss is like a long, slow pull of the water from the coolest mountain stream. It satisfies a thirst so deep that there is a physical impact: I notice my eyes roll to the back of my head, even while my toes curl.

After fifteen minutes we circle the block and come back to the restaurant for the food, although it is not quite ready. We stand inside in the center of the restaurant – a bit awkwardly at first but holding one another as if we are alone in a room filled only with our thoughts. Breaking every instinct for social acceptance, we kiss again. Arms wrapped. Eyes closed. Lips parted.

This is a good date.

Life before! Life after! That dividing line!

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September 2nd: Intense transcendental texting between David & Anita= Anita realizing that David already has her heart.

September 3rd & 4th: David doesn’t text much. Anita tries to play along and not text too….at least initially.

That weekend while David is on a beach vacation I go from floating with and dancing in the clouds to having my first round of panic attacks. I receive a text from him Saturday morning and then nothing. PANIC! He’s gone!? So Sunday afternoon I finally send him a text. Just a picture I took of a river flower that morning. He sends me a picture in response of himself…he looks happy and irresistible. I dare to write ‘this makes no sense but I miss you.’- He sends another selfie…no words. UH-OH!!! So I sense he’s withdrawing. My heart panics and my head tries to catch up for the chance to strike back. Fool! See!? Told you so! This is too good to be true!

I go on to accidentally texting that I’m really looking forward to seeing him on Monday. OUCHIE!! Our scheduled date is for Tuesday. He says ‘sure if you want to pick me up from the airport?’ -Yes yes- I do!! URGH! Yes-YIKES- I have no game!! Grr!!

September 5th- Monday: I pick David up from the airport.

That morning- I believe I pushed myself onto him for Monday. I wonder if this means I won’t get to have that planned date for Tuesday? Heck!! What do I wear now since it’s no longer a proper date!? AHHH!! My best friend gives it to me straight! ‘Anita- he knows how you feel! You’ve given away way too much! Now please listen to me and start pulling back! Take it easy…Play it cool!!’ etc.. etc… She says- ‘And please do not dress sexy! No dresses! Just jeans and a casual lose shirt! Yes Ma’am! Done! The pep talk from my bestie and my own logical side continues as I drive to the airport.

He’s lost interest in me already. I’m convinced of this. DAMN! This is going to hurt but I will survive- I am strong! He’ll give me some lame reason why we can’t date or how we need to see other people. URGH!! BREATHE! Freakin’ Play it Cool- Woman!!!

I wait for him at the airport. I breathe….not easy….deep slow breathing…it’s gonna be ok! I sense him like a magnetic pull. I turn around feeling awkward…and I see his gorgeous sparkly eyes and smile. MELT BIG TIME! BREATHE!!! Don’t run into his arms. Hold back! Hug but stand tall!! Mmm…the scent of him…I close my eyes and hope he can’t see that I am melting. I try not to stumble…physically or mentally…Heart- holds a beat!

I forget where I am and how I got there! LOL! Where the heck did I park my car!!? YIKES!! Breathe! Trace footsteps and guide him back to parking lot. Pray he doesn’t see I’m exceptionally ditzy right now! YIKES!!? OK- we get to the car and the butterflies in the tummy are dancing to music now….and my knees are turning a bit to jello in his presence. How can I drive like this!? So I ask if he’d like to drive? I’m surrendering myself and my car to a total stranger. YUP!

He drives. I’m glad. I try not to stare at his face or at his hand on the wheel. I try to act reserved…though this magnetic pull grows more powerful sitting so close to him…It’s distracting but I try to focus..listen to him tell me about the city he grew up in – He’s from DC. I offer to keep it short..to drop him off and leave but he asks me out for coffee. Coffee shop is closed. It’s Labor Day. I tell him it’s a sign. I should drop him off and go. He says ‘no let’s get breakfast.’ YAY! He’s not pushing me away.

At the diner- it’s time for ‘the talk’- I can feel it. I’m afraid of what he will say. He asks to move from across the table to the seat next to me. He asks to hold my hand. Then he says- ‘We should slow down. Stop. Slow down!’- Here it comes! The dreaded moment where I get rejected. I’m 42 and have always been rejected every single time I’ve ever been drawn towards any man over the years! Stab in the chest! Breathe!

‘You are breaking up with me even before we start?’- I ask. He says ‘God! No!’ Holding my breath I say- ‘Is this where you tell me we need to date other people and you’re not ready for this?’- He says’ What!!? No! I got off of Match!’ I say- ‘Why!?’ David- ‘For you!’ I am holding my breath as I say -‘Me too. I got off of Match too.’ His big beautiful expressive eyes intensely look into mine- opening wider as he says – ‘Why!?’- And ‘For you-Of course!’ I respond.

He looks away. His entire face turns away from me. He does this often- when it feels too overwhelming his eyes always tear away to break the intensity. I’m terrified now!! I wait. I listen. He’s saying ‘I feel like I’m about to jump into an abyss- it’s dark and I am terrified because I want to jump without holding back.’ Hmm!!? An abyss? ‘Hey- I don’t like being referred to as a dark abyss’ I say. David laughs and tries to explain but that doesn’t sound any better. Then he asks me what I want. I give him an answer that I’d never heard formulated in my head that clearly before and yet it’s shockingly insightful and honest.

‘I believe that when one makes a wish with all their heart- it always comes true.’ I say.. ‘but all my years I’ve been terrified of wishing for true love….because I’ve only seen women get hurt, rejected or abandoned sooner or later in love and I never wished to risk this for me.’ David says ‘And now?’- His grip on my hand strengthens and he’s really listening and looking into my eyes.

My words falter and I struggle but I’m encouraged by the look in his eyes as I say ‘I’m ready to make this wish…for a real man. I’m not looking to date randomly. I’m looking for love.’ He’s not afraid. He’s not running away! Is this for real!!?? What happens next!!? David says -‘OK!’ I ask – ‘as in you want to give this a try?’- He says – ‘Yes!’- YESSS!!!?? YESSS!!! OMG!!!

David is like no man I’ve known before. He opens doors and he pulls my chair for me…like in old movies…he’s a proper old-style Hollywood gentleman. He’s all around SURREAL!! WOW!!

We take a walk around the block and then his arm slips around me. It should feel new but it doesn’t. It feels comforting…in a way I can’t remember knowing before…yet ever so familiar. Then the kiss! The moment he kissed me I realized what I already knew in my heart that….he’s my ‘The One!’

David – Second Date: Coffee and a Kiss

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The second date seals our fate. I ask her if she can pick me up from the airport. She says yes. I was coming back from the beach. I was relaxed, tan and felt good about coming home.

What would she be wearing?  Our texting had picked back up, although it seems more restrained than either one of us really want. Play it cool. She might not be as into you as you are into her. Jets. Sharks. Real cool, boy.

I see her standing in front of the Smithsonian store at National Airport. Jeans. White loose-fitting shirt. She looks amazing. Relaxed. She faces the store as I approach from her right. She looks down at her phone then up, sees me and smiles.  That smile that can launch an army. That smile that sings to my heart. That smile is directed at me. Gulp.

Cool boy. Real cool. I had played this scene out in my mind before I landed. I would see her. Drop my bags. Run and scoop her up.  I would lift her off of her feet and swing in circles, kissing her lips while we laugh. In my mind’s eye, I see her beautiful hair swinging out. Her head thrown back. Laughter. Cue the violins.

None of that happened.  She closes her eyes and hugs me, burying her face in my chest and pulling me in – tight. We hold there a few seconds and say hello again. Sheepish grins. More looking down because I still can’t bear the intensity when I look directly in her eyes.  When the elevator doors close, I am conscious of the silence because I feel the electricity between us.

We chat and walk to the car. She is on my right and I steal glances to see her smile. Giggle. Stay cool.

“I thought we’d go for coffee at my favorite coffee shop,” says I.  There was no earthly way I was going to let her out of my sight.  I would have made up ANY excuse at that point to stay with her. Want to watch grass grow on The Mall downtown?  Should we count the bricks in this building’s wall?  Sounds great, right?  Literally. Anything.

We walk to the car although I have to mention one more adorable thing that she does. She can’t remember how to get back to the right parking garage. She seems distracted. And she keeps smiling when she looks at me. I smile back. It’s as though we are two foreigners who share no spoken vocabulary but understand every gesture, every inflection because the tone of our voice is so clear.

“Wanna drive?” She asks.

“Sure.”

I have to keep my eyes on the road though it is hard. I reach and take her hand. My favorite coffee shop – Ebenezer’s – is closed but that does not matter. I would find spores growing in a deep, dank, dark part of the city for us to watch as long as it keeps her next to me.

Another coffee shop on H St. Option Number Two. We sit and order. We hold hands. She moves her chair closer to mine to close the gap. We talk about Us. The Connection. It’s like an electric live wire, showering us with blue sparks and tizt-tzitsing with each breath. We hold BOTH hands in a criss-cross shape the way you might grab someone hanging from a great height whose life you must save. We save each other. That smile. Wow. Those eyes.

She asks me something. I hear myself saying words that I think are the right ones to say: “Let’s take things slow.”

“Are you breaking up with me?” She asks.

“Breaking up?!!  Not even close!” I laugh. “I just feel myself slipping into an abyss and I want to be careful.  Oh, and I got off of Match.com this weekend because of you.”

“I did too!” She surprises me with this.

“You did?!” Just like the Grinch, my heart grew ten sizes that day. At that moment, I am home.  That was it. This girl just tagged and bagged me.  Get the fork because I. Am. Done.  If she had asks me to whistle “It’s a Small World” through my ass I would have figured out how to do it.  So much for slow.

We pay the bill and go for a walk outside on H St – walking away from Union Station. With my arm around her, I turn to kiss her.

Now dear reader, I must pause for a moment. Here is this woman that I had known for three hours of my life. As far as I am concerned, she is the most beautiful woman in the world. Beyonce is a stupid, fetid cow next to my Anita. Ok, maybe Beyonce could be Anita’s wingman at a bar. But I’d still go after Anita. I am drawn to her like a moth to a porch light. Like a butterfly to nectar.  I no longer have a choice; when destiny knocks, you answer with speed and a turn-on-your-heels energy.

So I turn to kiss her, I see her face – eyes closed – head turned slightly to the right. I see her inhale and she holds her breath.  Somehow our faces are at 45-degree angles, with hers slightly below mine. Lips touch. Pow!  Blam. Toes curl. Stomach knots. I have just lost my purchase on this earth.

We both exhale with a long breath. Suddenly, I am like a man who had only known a dry, lonely thirst and now discovers an endless supply of fresh, sparkling earth-cooled water. More than he could drink in his lifetime.  I am overcome. My muscles relax. My heart beats faster. I am like a butterfly; I float. I am home, after a journey of lifetimes.  I am with my beloved at last.

Hello again.

Anita – Second Date: Dragonfly Directions!

In many cultures dragonflies symbolize sudden and swift directional changes- that bring about unexpected transformations associated with lightness, joy and the discovery of one’s true colors!

August 31st– I meet David. I tell him we won’t date. I don’t expect to hear from him again.

September 1st– I obsess/gush over memories from my date with David. My friend at work tries to convince me to call him. I stubbornly say that I can’t. She seems sure that he will call. I like that idea but can’t go there! Can’t risk that kind of hoping. Of course I don’t hear from him. Shrug!

September 2nd– I’m still floating around with David on my mind! It’s Friday. A long day at work!

As I drive home that evening I wonder if I should’ve worn a dress on my date…maybe tried to be flirtatious…I’m left wondering if I regret telling him we won’t date again!? Then I console myself saying that I have to trust the universe and believe that I did/said whatever I needed to. Then…DING!!!..The phone starts dinging…I am driving and I can see there are texts coming in from…DAVID!!?

Uh-Oh!!! Heart flutters like a teenager in love! I tell myself ‘OK! Breathe!! Focus on the road! Read it when you get home!’- So I pick up my son, grab him a quick dinner to-go! {Yup not my shinning hour as a mom.}- I rush home. Kid runs off to play video games. A friend calls to chat and I tell her…all giggly that I can’t talk- ‘David’s texting- Got to go!’ Somehow my kid doesn’t interrupt us for the next few hours.

YUP! Next few hours!! We text non-stop in almost a trance…we are writing things rapidly to each other that logically make no sense….much like stepping on your own foot and tripping over before brain catches up….except we BOTH do this repeatedly….MIND-BLOWING!!….I invite him to a retreat in November with me (I’ve never invited anyone to a retreat before! The whole point is to be alone away from everyone!).

Brain says’ ‘Hey! You didn’t just do that!?’ Hmm…heart smiles in response saying ‘yes I did. No regrets!’- UH-OH!! My heart is now racing…far ahead…and brain is really struggling to keep up. YIKES!!?? At one point David writes- ‘if this continues we will be moved in together by October.’- Not freaked out at all….I get this! I get him! He gets me! But it is freaky and it is truly AMAZING!!

Just when I think he can’t get any more fascinating or intense…he just does…and something inside me awakens to meet that intensity right back full force….so we’re quickly realizing that we believe, think and say the same things at the exact same times….intuitively we ‘just know’ that this is a reunion of two old souls who’ve been separated for far too long and are now suddenly finally blissfully reuniting….nothing to do with rhyme or reason! Even happening to me this seems impossible to grasp…a perfect phantom-man created by and for me!!? NO! Not phantom….he’s real and he’s here!!! BREATHE!!!

He says ‘I’d like to see you again.’ My heart flutters even faster. I smile. Big smile! ‘Tuesday’ he says…I’m returning from my trip on Monday. YES!! This is grander than my fears…I finally get this!

He’s texting from a cab on his way to the airport….the wrong airport he realizes…LOL! Poor baby!….So he reroutes now….I feel almost guilty but not really….not only because this gives us more time to continue texting….but also as if I know already that this is somehow symbolic…..he’s detouring…he’s heading now to the right airport…..in the right destination.

David – Second Date: Fish Plus Banjo Equals Twelve

banjo

We never really had a second date. What I mean is that a couple of days after  we first met, I sent Anita a text saying thanks for meeting. I was on my way to the airport to get out of town for a few days but I really enjoyed meeting her. Not expecting anything other than a pleasant – “Hope you’re having a good day”.  Instead, what I got was a Fish Playing a Banjo.  That could use some explanation.

We ended up having what amounted to a three-hour, non-stop texting session on Sept 2 that was other-worldly.  We connected intensely. I had a message for her about her mother and grandmother, both of whom had passed years ago. She invited me to a yoga retreat in Mexico. It was as if we just said, “Oh, hey it’s you. Been a couple of lifetimes, right?  Wassup?”

She was so familiar. So present. So comfortable. So beautiful. The more we texted, the more beautiful she got.  How is it possible to connect with someone like that via text?  Intense texting is for kids. Teenagers who only like the FaceTube and the YouBooks.

And yet, here I sat grinning like a teenager while the subway’s lights flickered and we bumped down the tracks. I looked around and wondered whether anyone could see what must be the High-Noon-Smile shining from my face.

Stop that. Stop that. You’re a grown man, for goodness sakes.  You’ve run with the bulls in Pamplona. You swam with sharks off of the Great Barrier Reef in Australia. You and Hemingway have stared through the honey-colored, prism-lighted bottle of Jack Daniels with a Gaulois cigarette dangling loosely from your lips.

Ok, maybe none of that is true.  But I WANT it to be true.  It asserts my independence – an attitude that I have grown comfortable with over the years – even if it has not served me that well.

But now that changes. I feel present. I feel connected. We are two parts of a whole – no longer two separate people.  We have worked up to this point to complete a checklist of preparations – a lifetime of events (both positive and negative) that brought us to one another so that we could say, “Ok, now we’re ready.”

After the texting session, I put my phone down and took a beat.  Wow.  My eyes opened a littler wider than before. I grinned from ear to ear.  I asked my Ethiopian taxicab driver how he was doing. He smiled and said he was doing well. He asked me how I was doing and I said, “Great!   I just met a girl!”

I called up her pictures on my phone and shot my arm between the seats so that he could see her. “That’s her!  Isn’t she beautiful?”, says I.  He laughed. He smiled. “Oh yes, she is beautiful!”  We chatted for a bit about her and I thought it odd that here I was sitting in the back of cab riding at 9 o’clock at night, talking to a perfect stranger about a woman who I just met. A woman I couldn’t stop thinking about. A woman who – though practically a stranger – seemed so familiar that she felt like an old friend.

I was delighted. I was intrigued. I was enchanted and energized in a way that I had never felt before.  Who knew that a fish could play such a mean banjo?