Naps Are Dangerous

A year ago today, I woke with a swarm of butterflies in my stomach.  This was the day I had spent weeks preparing for.  My house was spotless, my outfit carefully selected by my best friend (and fashion advisor), my hair freshly-cut and painstakingly straightened, and make-up meticulously applied.  I poured hot coffee into my travel mug, but - despite the obnoxiously early hour - I didn't need any.  I was wired with anticipation.

Today was the day he was coming home.

I'm not sure I exhaled the entire drive to PDX.

I arrived early, which is a miracle in and of itself since I am perpetually late, and staked claim on my usual spot near security. Leaning against the post, I fidgeted awkwardly with my sweater and mumbled fervent prayers under my breath.  As strangers trickled through the arrivals area, I both wished I were taller and thanked God that he is.  Even if he couldn't spot me among the small crowd awaiting their loved ones, I would surely be able to see him...whenever he showed up.

My mind wandered into a familiar day dream.

What if he got down on one knee and proposed right there?  What if sending me ring shopping with my best friends and his talk about needing some time to "work things out" had all just been a ruse - an attempt to throw me off so I wouldn't suspect what he had really been planning all along?

I shook my head, knowing I couldn't allow my heart to go there because it would only serve to disappoint me if he didn't pop the question today.  And I wasn't going to allow anything to ruin the excitement of what was about to happen:

Finally, after months (which felt more like years) apart, we would be reunited.  From halfway across the world, his heart had been transformed.  I hardly recognized the man behind the emails, the letters, the phone calls...would it still be that way in person?  Had distance made our hearts grow fonder, or just work harder?

And just as anxiety began to brew, I saw him.  My heart lurched.  It didn't skip a beat, it all but leapt right out of my chest and into my throat.  He was coming closer.  Did I run out and tackle him as I had threatened to?  Or did I restrain myself and wait for him to approach me?

I'm a little fuzzy on what happened next, but fairly certain we met somewhere in the middle.

A hug, a few kisses, another hug...I could tell he felt uncomfortable. I forced myself to swallow down my own feelings of disappointment at how anticlimactic our much-aniticipated reunion was.  PDA wasn't really his thing, I'd always known that.

So we made our way to baggage claim, collected his suitcases, and I continued to marvel at the reality that was standing before me.  He was home.  I remember trying to snap a few pictures of him in the elevator on our way to the parking garage, as he stubbornly turned his face away.  I just wanted to capture the moment forever.  We were together again.

You would think after the months of build-up leading to this day, the extreme distance (not just geographically, but the separation of our hearts, as we had lived in very different realities apart from one another for quite some time) would cause us to spend the next several hours nuzzling noses and making googly-eyes at one another.

Instead, we drove the 20 minutes back to my apartment, unloaded my car...and took a nap.

And that, my friends, was some tremendous foreshadowing.  Because somewhere along the lines, we both fell asleep at the wheel.  We stopped moving towards one another and allowed our own exhaustion at the effort our broken relationship required to drag us into apathy.  Apathy which led to resentment.  Resentment which ultimately tore us apart.*

So today, exactly one year later, I wonder: rather than waking up that morning to a new beginning, was it really just the beginning of the end?

*I will reiterate, for the sake of his current relationship and any potential new ones that may come my way, that our ultimate decision to separate came after much spiritual counsel and prayer.  And while it has been an abhorrently painful process, I truly believe we listened to God and acted in faith.  There is peace, even in the brokenness.  This post is merely a reflection of my heart as I continue to process the tremendous transformation my life has taken in just a few short years.


A simple statement from the Genesis Bible Study Teaching leader during her lecture comes to mind:
"God foresees every potential outcome and saves us from our fondest dreams".
I love you!
Vanessa's Dad said…
Know the plans He has for you. Plans for hope and a future and a cup that will overflow with more Joy than you could imagine. Your are a blessing to so many, and my prayer is that you have blessings and Peace.