“You wore your hair up yesterday,” Mama said as I came out of the bathroom. She struck a pose, fluffing her own luxurious long hair. “Micah needs to see it in all its glory!”
I can always depend on my Mama to make sure I put my best foot forward. I followed her advice and took the necessary time to blow-dry and style my waist-length hair. I don’t remember what I wore that day, but I know I looked good. When Micah came through the front door, I caught an expression on his face that I hadn’t seen before, and I swear there were flames in his eyes. It was just a moment, but it was enough. I felt the smug smile wash over my face. I had his attention. For some reason, he just didn’t want to show me. The most he would say was, “You look nice today,” as he opened the car door for me.
After church, I changed into something more practical, and we went to town for a walk again. I took him to one of my favorite thinking spots- the baseball field up on the hill. It’s almost always lonely and quiet. You can hear the wind through the trees, and the birds on the hills across town, but nothing else.
We talked easily again, about anything and everything. As we were walking up the hill, a particular bird called out, and Micah looked around, grinning. “That’s awesome! I saw quail in the road this morning, and that was a chukar just now!”
“What’s the difference between a quail and a chukar?” I asked. “I know they’re different birds, but I can’t tell them apart.”
“Well,” he said, “A quail is the smaller one, and the males have the little feather on top of their heads. Chukar are a little bigger than quail, and they run really fast with their heads forward, like this.” And then, the six-foot-four-inch man did an excellent impression of a chukar. For about three seconds. When I giggled, he straightened up and looked back at me. “And there is no reason ever to tell anyone that I just did that.”
We sat in the grass, just listening to the sounds, enjoying each other’s company. It was one of those lovely early spring days where the air is fresh and warm. We sat about as close as we could without actually touching. Everything felt so natural, and I wanted him to put his arm around me, to hold my hand, to whisper in my ear, and maybe steal a kiss. My mind wandered along this path constantly, and I kept having to remind myself that we were STILL ON OUR FIRST DATE. It just felt like we’d been like this forever.
He scooted a few feet away from me, and lay back in the grass, closing his eyes. Then, I tackled him.
No, not really. I just sat there and wondered if he had heard my thoughts and freaked out.
“I have a confession to make,” he said suddenly.
My stomach plummeted. “Okay.”
He turned and looked at me. “It was great meeting your family. They’re awesome. I just… I haven’t told my family about you yet.”
I frowned. I supposed it was understandable. I lived at home, and he didn’t. It was easier for him to leave out certain details of his life. Still, it bothered me a little. “Why not?”
“Well, it’s silly, but I thought they’d make fun of me for meeting someone from the internet. I kind of figured I’d wait until I’d met you in person. Till we had something more concrete.”
I hesitated. “Are you going to tell them soon?”
“Yeah.” He grinned at me. “Yeah, I am.”
Micah stayed until the sun began to set. He had to work in the morning, and it was a four-hour drive back for him. I walked him to his truck, and he gave me another hug that felt like so much more. He looked like he wanted to say something, but he finally just smiled and said, “Well, I’ll call you when I get back.”
I nodded, feeling a heaviness come over me. I didn’t want him to go, but I felt dumb longing for him to stay. You just met the guy. Calm down.
I went back inside. I checked my e-mail, I tried to play my guitar, but nothing sounded right. About an hour later, my phone rang.
“Hey,” Micah’s voice came through the phone. I could practically hear his smile.
I laughed. “You can’t possibly be home yet.” I was grinning so hard, it hurt. I missed him already, darn it.
“No, but I couldn’t wait any longer to call you. I’ve been talking to my parents on the phone. I told them everything about you, and they can’t wait to meet you.”
I thought my heart would explode. When I could speak, I asked, “So, I take it you liked me?”
“Oh yeah. Are you kidding me? You’re amazing! The only reason I’m going home right now is that I need to work to make money so I can come see you again as soon as possible. Otherwise, I wouldn’t have left. I think I’m crazy about you.”
I sat there smiling like an idiot for several moments before I remembered he couldn’t see me. “I really liked you too. I’d love to come over and meet your parents soon.”
“I’m sorry I was a little standoffish today,” he said after a while. “I didn’t want to be too forward and scare you. I wanted to hold your hand all day. I wanted to put my arm around you when we were at the baseball field. And I almost kissed you before I left tonight. Just so you know, if you expect me to wait a while to kiss you, you can’t look at me like that.”
I laughed for a long time at that, feeling all the tension and worry and insecurity melt away. This was brand new territory for me, and I knew I was going to enjoy every moment.
So, there you have it. The Most Awkward Date Ever. Like a fairy tale, our romance blossomed very quickly. Within five months, he had relocated to my town and we were married. It might sound a little crazy. Heck, it might BE a little crazy, but I wouldn’t change a thing.
I’m VERY glad that I’m not so awkward around my husband, seven years later. I hear people talk about a seven-year-itch, or about how they feel like all the newness has worn off. While I know what they mean, and it’s definitely different, I have waited a long time for the security and peace that comes with knowing someone so well that you can see his heart in everything, and you know he sees yours as well.