With each year of marriage that passes, dating life slips further and further from my memory. Going on dates is a thing of the past, for the most part. But I keep all of the memory I can of when Steve and I weren't married, just were together.
The time when people are pursuing each other, seeing if they should end up together is so sweet. When they don't yet think about bills and future children and home remodeling: they are still trying each other out to see if that is someone they could end up discussing those things with someday.
I remember the first day I met Steve: he was at a table, the only person I hadn't met before, but he was the only one I noticed. He had this crooked smile and a dirty white hat and I remember thinking about his smile on the ride back to my dorm room. I remember our dates when we still barely knew each other and conversation wasn't natural, so we listened to his punk rock CDs.
I remember even then, going on walks together, grabbing hands for a moment or two, relishing every moment we had together before retiring to our halls.
I think of how much is the same, only now we know each other better, talk either more or less based on what we are comfortable doing. We know each other enough now not to ask stupid questions, since we know the answers. We know each other enough to know how to and not to piss each other off. We know now how to react to each others' emotions.
We are the people we were then, just more comfortable with being that person. I don't feel the need to suppress my thoughts or emotions and he doesn't feel the need to wear collars. He can smoke a cigarette around me and I can drip hot fudge down my shirt without being embarrassed. We have become best friends, we have trust and a mutual respect for each others' ambitions and opinions. We have each other: and all that entails.
It's hard to believe that at one point, we lived independently from each other. It's hard to believe that at one point he was just a white hat at Buffalo Wild Wings. It's hard to believe we could have both gone on with our individual lives, not knowing what we were missing by not trying us out. It's hard to believe he could be with someone else, and I could be alone, and we never would have known this life we have built together.
Do you believe in soul mates? Or do you think that you can learn to love anybody given the right circumstances and timing? Because I have never been with a man like Steve, and don't think I ever would be again even if I was still out there dating.