Last night, I dreamed we were on vacation. I have no doubt this dream stemmed from the conversation we had before bed, in which we planned our 5 and 10 year anniversary trips. We promised that if after 5 years we were still dating, we’d venture abroad to Ireland. If we’re still going strong in 10 years, we’d treat ourselves to the Maldives.
I suppose my subconscious fast forwarded 10 years because this dream opened on us relaxing on a most beautiful beach with water so clear it was purple. Now, I know you’re thinking that doesn’t necessarily place us in the Maldives; that could very well be our exceptionally maintained, present day Ohio River. The water alone isn’t what betrays the time gap, however. The reason I know this happened at age 33, and not my present, intellectual 23 is because I was sitting on that beach in my floppy hat reading my favorite book. Now if you know me at all, you know I never read. So the fact that I’d have read enough books to have a favorite is a sure sign that this happens no sooner than a decade from now at least.
So here we are, wearing that all white, light cotton garb that only movie set costume designers know where to find, lying on a giant beach blanket, and you have your head in my lap. I’m absentmindedly tousling your hair with my perfectly manicured fingers (another dead giveway), pausing only to turn a page in my book. Seagulls are squawking in the distance, but otherwise, we have the beach to ourselves. The hours go by as the waves lap lazily against the sand and in time, I come to the final chapter of my book. I turn the last page of the chapter, as I have so many times before, only this time – it’s not the end.
The epilogue before me was written by a different author. I recognize your handwriting instantly and smile at your vandalism. For the life of me, I wish I could remember what you wrote. I know you alluded to my favorite scenes, incorporating our lives into those of my characters, or hell, maybe you kicked those sorry saps out all together and wrote a note about only us. Whatever you did, it was perfect.
All the while I’m reading this, I’m trying to keep it from you that I’ve reached your letter, because by now, you’re sleeping on my belly. Now, I don’t know why I do this, but if the dream is any indicator, we know I won’t stop any time soon. All of that is neither here nor there – just know that whenever you do something sweet, my face gets hot, my hands start sweating, and I do everything I can to avoid eye contact. It’s like I don’t want you to know that I’m so happy about what you’ve done, but as I reflect on the memory later, all I want to do is gush over you, telling you just how thoughtful and timeless you are.
Alas, it isn’t meant to be – I’m not the instinctively sincere person I read about, but I guess you know that by now, ten years in the future. So anyway, I get to the end of your writing and it doesn’t take a genius to know where you’re going. You ask me to marry you in words I’ll only remember if it happens. For once, I have no reservations. I know absolutely that my answer is yes, but what I don’t know – is why the fuck it took you so long to ask.
Tldr; I love you.