If you're joining in late - see prior chapters of the "epic" pursuit of my wife HERE.
So after waiting for what seemed to be an eternity (or at least 30 seconds) I begin to wonder….is she still alive? I see her breath fogging up the passenger side window. Yes, she’s still breathing. Okay, this is a good sign. With her eyes still fixed outside she finally responds to my “Will you pray for me?” with a perfunctory….
“Okay.”I am suddenly overcome with an inexplicable sensation that can only be explained as joy down in my heart. Deep, deep down in my heart. J-O-Y down in my heart. Deep, deep down in my heart. But then something happens…she begins to cry. Not a wail. Not a wimper. Just a subtle tear followed by a slight sniffle. My first instinct was to nod and smile, “Tears of joy, Rico. Tears. Of. Joy.”
But when she finally looked forward I could make out her face…and she didn’t look happy. Why was she crying? I was confused. Was it something I said?
There are few situations in life that makes a guy more uncomfortable than being in the presence of a girl that is crying. I personally can only think of a few:
• Dancing like a drunken elephant in front of friends and family.
• Letting one go in an elevator – only to have the doors open with people you know walking in.
• Getting a face full of pepper spray for asking someone a simple question.
• Going #2 in a public restroom (or Grainger Library...for example) and suddenly realizing you are sitting in the women’s bathroom
Not that I have any experiential knowledge in any of the aforementioned. She didn’t say much on the way home. It was pretty quiet in the car and frankly a bit uncomfortable. I dropped her off at her dorm and said good-bye but things just didn’t seem right. What happened? This was not how I envisioned things playing out—to be honest, I thought it would go more like this:
Me: …will you pray for me?
Kim: O Chomeo, Chomeo! Wherefore art thou Chomeo? Deny thy father and refuse thy name; Or, if thou wilt not, be but sworn my love, and I'll no longer be a Shimulet.
Me: “Ummm....maybe! [nervous laugh] So….is that a yes?”
Kim: “Yes! Yes!! A thousand times Yes!!!
Me: “Sweet! Let’s go to Hot Wok and celebrate!”
But alas, this is not how it went. My roommate, Scott, was waiting for me at home, eager to find out what happened…and I really don’t have much to say. I felt like I had done it. I confessed my love. I revealed my heart. I bared my soul. I spilled the beans. It was my moment of truth and I waited to see if she would eat my beans…and smile, a beautiful smile. Or eat my beans…and flatulate, a nasty flatus (click the link - that is a word). I felt like I got neither. I felt like I got a beautiful fart. You know…one that sounds like a Mozart concerto sans the odor.What the heck?
We now entered into this supremely awkward phase in our relationship. It’s strange. You work so hard, pray so fervently, and wait so long to get to this point and when you’re finally there – you realize you’re clueless on what you are supposed to do. Once you have entered the praying phase what do you do as a couple?
Do you talk?
Do you watch movies?
Do you fast?
Do you talk about movies really fast?
What do you do?
No one has really explained to me what this time was for. Probably because most of the guys telling me “this is the way you do it” were as clueless as I was. (their singleness should have been a hint) And so began our “courtship”…in the most liberal sense of the word. Although I asked her to "pray about" having a relationship with me - she now says in her mind she had actually only agreed to "pray about praying" about it. Try figuring that one out boys!
So our “courtship” or “prayer time” or "praying about praying about it time" was winding to a close. Three months had passed and it was now May and I was nearing my graduation and she was growing in consternation. My whole family was coming into town to see me get my diploma (they wanted visual proof). It was time for us to come to a decision and “meet the parents”. Was she ready to move forward? Was she not? What was to become of us?
For single men:
- Don’t assume that every time a girl cries – it’s because she’s madly in love with you.
- Know exactly what to do when a girl cries. That said, if anyone knows what to do - tell me. I’m still clueless.
- Don’t ask girls to “pray” for you unless you’re pretty dang sure she is the one. Emphasis on the “dang”.
- Let your “yes be yes and your no be no”. Please no “beautiful flati” – it confuses everyone. (what is the plural form of "flatus"?)
- Try not to cry in front of men – I know it’s a defense mechanism but really…. it frightens us.
- If a guy asks you to "pray about it" - don't come back with "I'll pray about praying about it." That's just confusing and guys are simple (i.e. dumb).