She was a means to his end. She represented everything for which he had been looking, a woman with whom he could finally see spending his lifetime.
Everyone was shocked that it had lasted this long; they didn’t see it. She didn’t look like his other girlfriends, but it wasn’t just that. She was muted, somehow. All of the other girls he brought home, loved and then proceeded to hurt because he wasn’t ready for the commitment, they were all strong. Loud. Challenging. Not her, things had always been easy with her. Like gentle waves, soft breezes, perfect summer days. No questions, no worries. Seducing him into a security he had never known. She was his for the taking.
Maybe it was the fact that he was 32 now, and maybe it was the handful of Christmases spent listening to his mother groan she would never have any grandchildren to spoil. Perhaps it was the comfort of having someone warm, soft – endlessly available – next to him in the bed. Maybe it was the easy way she held a baby, perching it perfectly on her womanly hips, which made him want it so bad. She didn’t know much about children, but already he could see that she was born to be a mother. And he believed it was his path to be a father, not that he was sure that he’d even be any good at it.
He loved her enough, the connection they had was enough and they were happy enough. She wasn’t the kind of woman he’d dreamed of for years, but she was the woman he had, real and in front of him. And she was special, in her own way. He could be special to her too, if he tried. And they would be friends far more than they were lovers, roommates more often than soul mates. But he could live with that. What surprised him about his situation was that he never knew he would be a settler. Not a settler, exploring new lands and setting out to create a new life. But a settler, settling for what he had instead of wondering what else was out there. She was enough.
He pushed all these thoughts out of his head as he walked up to her tiny, one-bedroom apartment on the fifth floor. The elevator was down, so he took the stairs.
Up. Up. Up.
Her eyes would be bright when she saw him, she would be surprised to see him, yet she’d be expecting this surprise. It had been two years, after all.
Up. Up. Up.
She wasn’t as career driven as he thought she was when he’d first met her. This surprised him, as he thought she was passionate about her work. He thought she wanted to make a difference. But the more they talked about having a family, he found she wanted to stay at home with the children instead of working.
Up. Up. Up.
He loved the way she laughed and the way she teased him, and challenged him sometimes. She challenged him more in the beginning. Nothing was easy; she was a conquest. Now, she was a given.
Up. Up. Up.
He could almost see the white picket fences, family reunions, breakfasts in bed, changing diapers, coming home to the same smile, the same dimple in her right cheek. She loved him unconditionally, and he hoped she always would.
At her apartment now, standing in the front of the heavy wooden door.
He lifted his hand to knock, and found it trembling.
Today he would ask her to marry him. And his life would begin.
**If you are thinking, “What the heck did I just read? This isn’t Simply Solo!” then please let me explain. I would like to begin sharing more of my creative writing with you all. I started this a little last week with I Want Romance, and I’m hoping to share more creative/fictional/non-autobiographical writing about once a month. I hope you enjoyed this piece and I would love to hear your thoughts. As you can imagine, it’s a little scary to put my writing out there for the world to see!**
Copyright 2011. Simply Solo blog by Catherine Gryp. All Rights Reserved.