“Nothing gave Buttercup as much pleasure as ordering Westley around.”
Just as The Princess Bride is not your typical fairy tale, mine is not your typical love story. And, for all you single ladies out there – that is a good thing. Keep reading.
I’m not going to start with “Once upon a time”, that’s just not my life – fair tales have never been my thing. Generally, I’m not even a fan of chick flicks – not even Nicholas Sparks. Instead, how about something a little more relatable . . .
I was 30 years of age, had a professional degree and owned a home. Armed with my own well stocked tool box, a nice cordless drill and a new Craftsman, self-propelled lawn mower, I was a force to be reckoned with. I’d traveled around the world from Japan to Ireland on prayer journeys and just finished my first solo trip to a country where I didn’t speak the language. A bridesmaid more times than I cared to count and recently entering the realm of baby showers, I’d cried to myself (and everyone else) about my desire to be married. “Mr. Right” was practically a standing item on the church prayer list.
And in response, everyone had someone to set me up with. There were brothers and friends and coworkers. My grandma had even taken to reminding me that she just wanted to see me get married before she died. Me too grandma. Me too. Everyone, had plenty of advice:
I was too picky. (Yes.)
I needed to stop looking. (What?! How?)
Maybe it wasn’t God’s will. (Nope.)
My list was a bit much. Take my word for it – even I cringe thinking back to what was on it. We don’t need to go there. Trust me. (Note: If you’re single and have a ‘list’, you may want to go back over it after reading this.)
Cue Westley. I mean the Weatherman.
The Weatherman and I were the only single people in our church, in our age group. Really. We didn’t fit in with the single college students and weren’t ready to align with the singles our parents’ age. Naturally, everyone tried to pair us up.
The Weatherman didn’t object.
I explained he didn’t fit my list.
Each Sunday he moved closer and closer in his seat selection. Eventually, the Weatherman sat directly behind me.
I sighed and rolled my eyes. He didn’t fit my list.
He’d offer my coat at the end of every service.
My mother commented on what a “nice” man he was.
Lips pursed, I was noncommittal.
The ladies at church told me stories of how “he watched me” with a twinkle in their eyes. I didn’t encourage them. I didn’t encourage him. There was no point – he didn’t fit the list. I went on 50 first dates and a handful of blind dates – making no secret of it.
The Weatherman invited me out for coffee.
I told him it wasn’t a date. We were just “hanging out“.
The Weatherman ordered hot cocoa.
Seriously!? Who doesn’t drink coffee? What’s wrong with him?
The Weatherman asked me to a bonfire, dinner and eventually, a movie.
“Sure” I said.
I needed to do something. But they weren’t dates. We’re just “hanging out” I reminded him. He didn’t fit the list.
The Weatherman agreed. Just “hanging out.”
It drove me nuts. The Weatherman was always agreeable.
Just hanging out.
Much like Princess Buttercup found pleasure in ordering Westley around; I realized how much I enjoyed sending the Weatherman on a chase.
I asked the Weatherman out for dinner. “This is a ‘date'” I said.
He smiled through the phone.
That day, I was amazed to discover that when he was saying “As you wish” what he meant was, “I love you.” And even more amazing was the day I realized that I truly loved him back.
Okay, so maybe I am a little romantic this Valentine’s Day . . .