I remember the day I knew I could marry Mr. Flinger. Surprisingly, it wasn’t in High School when we were mushy young love-birds. (gag) It wasn’t during college when we were best friends, not-dating, and desperately fixing one another up with other people. It wasn’t until years later, at 24, having moved home to Texas and back that I saw him with my cousin Danielle. I remember the summer, of 2000, living with my Uncle and Aunt having found a job up in Portland, but not an apartment. I moved up from Houston ready to start my job and my new life. One day we took my cousin roller blading. She so adored Mr. Flinger that she made a necklace for him, a pretty little thing with beads and a star at the center. Perfect for an 8 year old and slightly odd for a 25 year old man. Mr. Flinger wore that necklace all day long. He wore it roller blading at the park. He wore it to the store. He wore it even though the small string barely fit around his neck and the star jabbed him as it stuck straight out, strained on its new owner.
This was the day I realized he would make a wonderful dad; Years and years before that day ever happened.
Years and Years later, we started a family together. A family with a man I've known for 17 years. And yes, that freaks me the hell out. Why shouldn’t it?
Most days we do just fine. We go places. We enjoy friends. It’s lovely. There are the meltdowns. There is screaming (the baby) and crying (LB) and the occasional W.T.F. (me) but usually, we do ok. We manage. We’re.. happy. Really.
But I clock out at 5. I expect the man with the star necklace to walk through that door at five. I NEED the man to walk through that door at five. FIVE. That’s an entire hour after he gets off work, providing for traffic and the all important “getting things squared away” time. Five. O’clock. That’s when help walks through the door and the children smile/laugh/outburst with glee at the sight of Daddy.