I’ve had a few people request that I do an open-ended “ask me anything” series on Wholefully. So, here it is! You’ll see me answering a reader question each week. Submit your questions by e-mailing me or commenting on this post. If you want to be identified in my answer, include your name and website (if applicable).
Literally, ask me anything. I’ll answer anything!*
*Okay, maybe not anything, but almost anything.
You can see previous AMA responses here.
Thankfully, Babyface came back from his trip in pretty much the exact same mindset I was in. In this case, absence really did make the heart grow fonder, and for both of us. We both came out of his mini-vacation with a fresh view of our potential relationship. What was originally some sort of fun, flirtatious, online friendship was now, decidedly, something more. And we had some serious logistics to figure out.
We very quickly decided we had to meet in person. We both decided that we couldn’t put a label on it or really even know what we had (or didn’t have) until we had spent time together in the same physical space. Sure, we talked a lot, but the chemistry and the electricity, those were things that couldn’t be transmitted through the tubes of the Internet.
So we began making plans. There were a million different possibilities. I could fly. He could fly. I could drive. We could meet halfway. Finally, Babyface said to me one day, “I need to do this,” and he went off to the local Greyhound station and bought a bus ticket from Thunder Bay, Ontario to Louisville, Kentucky. That trip is 997 miles by the most efficient roadways, but this bus trip took him the round-about way, resulting in a 38 hour bus trip. Yes, 38 hours.
Plans began to solidify. He was coming down to see me, meet me, be with me on Easter weekend in 2006. I was impressed that he was making the trip. Another check mark on his record.
I booked a hotel room (with two beds, thankyouverymuch) and took off of work. I told my closest friends. I wasn’t stupid. Even though I’d spent the last two months talking to this man online, I’d seen the Dateline NBC episodes where women got wooed by some man online only for it to end very badly. They were checking in on me. They knew where I was and where I was supposed to be.
The people who didn’t know where I was? My parents.
I contemplated long and hard how to say to my parents, “Hey guys, thanks for being amazing and raising me well, but I’m going to spend a weekend in a hotel with some guy I’ve never met.”
Of course, I was an adult at that point, but I was living at home. I wasn’t worried how they would react—they were very good at respecting the fact that I was an adult. My parents and I had (and still have) a fabulous relationship. I was mostly concerned with making them so worried about me for the entire weekend.
So I did the best thing I could come up with at the time—I lied.
I told them I was going to visit a friend out-of-town for the weekend. I have to say, I 100% do not regret my decision to lie to them. I didn’t want to put them through that stress. Especially if there was still a chance that this relationship would fizzle to nothing once we were physically together. And like I said, I had a very well-planned “he’s crazy” back up support system.
Things were coming together for our long-awaited meeting (well, relatively long, it was actually only 2 months from the day Babyface commented on my blog to the day we met in person, but it felt like a lifetime). There was only one big honkin’ caveat—I was scheduled to have surgery the morning of the day I was to meet Babyface.
It was minor, outpatient surgery on my feet. But still, it was full-on, general anesthesia, recovery-room, Vicodin-type surgery. And it was something I needed to have done. And it was the only time my podiatrist could fit me for months. So the weekend was set. Thursday morning I was going into surgery. And Thursday night I was meeting my future husband for the first time.
I was actually pretty calm that day. Surgery went smoothly and I was home and resting by lunchtime. My pain meds were good and I told my parents I felt fine and drove away to go “visit a friend.”
I went and checked into our hotel and got proceeding more and more nervous as the minutes ticked by. I was picking him up from the bus depot at 9pm. I started to get ready at around 7pm. Not that I normally needed that much time, I was just so nervous and shaky, it seemed like everything was taking 10 times longer.
I can’t even imagine what kind of mess I could have been if I wasn’t on painkillers.
I put on my cutest skirt, tank top, and jean jacket. I tied a scarf in my hair and gingerly slipped flip-flops over my bandaged feet. And I left. I thought I was going to throw up. Or pass out.
I did neither. I walked into the Greyhound bus depot in Downtown Louisville and stood off to the side. His bus wasn’t there yet.
All manner of people were in the depot that night. A lot of homeless. A lot of students that carried a bag full of dirty laundry. A few families. I wondered if anyone else was the ball of nerves I was.
And as I was thinking about all of this, his bus pulls up.
I see him step off the bus. Even though he is obviously exhausted (38 hours, people!) he is impressively handsome and completely adorable. He seems giddy. Like he hadn’t slept for days and someone just gave him Mountain Dew. Slap happy almost. Full of possibility. I have to remind myself that I know this man, he isn’t just some attractive stranger. He’s my attractive stranger.
He didn’t see me.
I should have ran across the depot like in the movies. I should have shoved everyone aside tackled him in an embrace. I should have cried. I should have had something to say. I should have done something. Something that made the entire depot bust out in cheers and we’d all break into a dance number.
But instead, I pretended like I didn’t even see him.
I looked toward the disgusting drop-tile ceiling and acted as nonchalant as ball of Vicodin-laden nerves could be.
to be continued . . .