This is a new series I’m working on that I want to share with all of you. Each week, I will post another chapter. I hope you enjoy it!
I am not known for wild behavior. I don’t think anyone has ever described me as “unreliable,” “reckless,” or “flakey.” When I say I’m going to be somewhere, you can count on me. I am ten minutes early to all appointments. I prepare a “just-in-case” bag when I meet up with people, filled with things someone might need based on the situation. I plan meals for two weeks ahead of time and have Christmas presents purchased and wrapped before Thanksgiving.
Responsible. I have no doubt that will be etched into my gravestone.
So when I climbed out the window at the bridal boutique and disappeared, my family was frantic. I refused to answer my phone. I checked into a nondescript motel on the opposite side of town with nothing but the clothes on my back and whatever was in my purse. The only contact I accepted was from Jamie. My fiancé.
“People are worried about you. Your mom is about to call the police.”
I groaned. Of course she was. Overdramatic, as per usual.
“God, I’m sorry to have put you in this position, Jamie. It’s not fair. But could you…”
“I’ll tell her I talked to you and that you are definitely NOT dead in a ditch.” There was a slight pause. “Do I get to know where you are?”
I slid from the bed to the floor, the phone pressed against my ear. “Jamie…”
He immediately backpedaled. “No, right. I understand. You need some space. That’s cool. I’m cool. Take whatever time you need.”
“Thanks,” I sighed. Good old Jamie. He was my rock and my favorite person. I knew he’d never push me. He would let me have my nervous breakdown and would cover for me for as long as I asked him to. If I needed clothes or money or even my passport, he’d find a way to get them to me, no questions asked. There had never been a better man on the planet than my Jamie. He was my ride-or-die.
And I was a monster for treating him like this.
“Just promise you’ll talk to me about this when you’re ready, okay?”
After a few more assurances, a few more apologies, and a plethora of thank yous, I told Jamie I loved him and hung up the phone.
I stared at the cell in my hand for several minutes. He didn’t deserve this. Everything about him was perfect for me: He was funny and kind. He loved to cook and was excellent at it. He loved animals and kids and old people. We’d been together for two years and when he asked me to move in with him – and I declined – he didn’t bat a lash. It wasn’t a major crisis and he didn’t automatically assume I didn’t love him. Where I was tightly wound and had to have a color-coded list or schedule for everything, Jamie was content to go with the flow. He even talked me down from the ledge whenever my intricate plans went off-course and I was convinced my whole life was ruined. Like I said, he was my rock. But he was also my soft place to land when things went off the rails.
So why was I afraid to marry him?