Disengaged has new pages, but the best news is that I don’t have to go back for another excision. I get to keep the rest of the skin on my back, because all the margins have now been removed. I am so glad!
Time is flying by. This week we registered Em for school. She’s got ten more days of summer vacation, and then it’s back to Junior High for her. It’s back to having hours of time to write every day for me, and I’m looking so forward to that! I felt concerned when she first mentioned going back, because I felt such relief at the thought. I don’t want to base a decision on that! But, sometimes it’s a win-win, and with everyone else totally on board and enthusiastic about it, I’ve decided it’s okay to be relieved. I’m not being selfish, or putting myself first, even though this is what’s better for me too. That’s a side-effect, not the reason behind the decision. Because if she didn’t bring her grades up, and if she was still struggling, this would not be happening, no matter how much I long for more time to write.
Twenty-five years ago, Brad and I became engaged. It’s a little shocking to realize how many years stand between then, and now. That’s a quarter of a century! It’s more than half my life.
I didn’t wake up that morning expecting to get engaged before the day was over, and I didn’t go to the mall with Brad expecting that, either. I did sort of expect that if I ever got engaged, the guy would ask. But, he didn’t. He did want to go in a jewelry store, and look at rings. That had no particular meaning, since this habit started the week after we met, seven months before. We’d done so several times since then, which yes, is kind of strange, considering we weren’t even dating at the time. But, there wasn’t much to do in that town. I supposed that was why. We weren’t dating, as I said, although he tells this story different. According to him, we were. In fact, he told everyone around us that we were. He did not bother to tell me. He did make sure I knew we were just friends. I can understand why he’d think I might get the wrong idea, considering he wanted to look at rings all the time, but whatever. He had commitment issues, I knew that. I accepted it, I enjoyed hanging out as friends, and had no other expectations. When I found out he was making sure the rest of the campus ministry thought we were dating, I was mad. I have no idea why he didn’t see that coming! He decided it would be wise to stop insisting we were just friends, and admit he wanted to go out. He didn’t, but he did tell me he loved me, I was the only one he wanted to be with, and I forgave him. So by the time we walked in the jewelry store on August 4th, 1992, we’d been dating less than a month. I was not expecting anything. I tried on the ring he liked, and he plunked a huge wad of cash on the counter and said we’d take it. Before I could be properly shocked over that, the guy who worked there, said okay. He’d take the cash, and the ring, write up the contract, Brad would sign it, and he’d show the shop owner. And I said, huh? Then I grabbed Brad by the arm, and said that was insane to hand this guy (especially because he was one of Brad’s friends) a ton of cash, and walk out with nothing but a copy of the contract obligating him to pay off the rest of the ring he didn’t have! Oh my word! I was ready to have a conniption. The other guy, his dubious friend, said didn’t I want Brad to surprise me with a romantic proposal? I stared at him like he was insane. It was a little late for that! All I knew for sure, was that I wasn’t letting go of that ring unless Brad got his money back. But he didn’t want it back. He wanted the ring. So we walked out with it, a receipt, a contract, and a severe case of shock. We went to dinner after, and my hands were shaking so bad, I couldn’t hold a fork. I was wearing that ring, but I couldn’t grasp that we were engaged. Probably because he didn’t ask! And I didn’t say yes! But, we got married later that year, anyway.
It’s time for me to sign off, and go hang out with Brad and celebrate our anniversary. And maybe, before the night is over, I’ll have some time to get a few more pages written on Disengaged. I hope so, because I really want to know what happens next.