The day I said to you, “I’m gonna write a romance novel!” you nodded your head emphatically and said “OKAY!” Maybe it was the research prospects, maybe it was the idea of me finally producing something you know I’m always thinking about… whichever it was or is, you believed in me. Still do.
It’s been (gulp) five years now… and I’ve filled notebooks and flash drives with stories and scenes and ideas and characters, but still no book.
Have the images of that little house on the beach fizzled out by now? Its down payment was spent on Wings’ multiple college admissions, tests, that jalopy of a car… that now sits patiently in the driveway, waiting for another repair. Is it further down the retirement road after Fins’ high school career: marching band dues, trips, track team fees, physical therapy, doctors’ bills and braces and x-rays…?
Yet you get up every morning at 5:30 a.m., in the dark, in the cold…. You never fail to kiss me awake.
You fix your own breakfast and come back to me. You kiss me good-bye to wake me up, you tell me you love me.
And every day I write and struggle with imaginary settings and point of view, with improbable heroes, whose muscles never soften, whose hairlines never recede, and who are always turned on by their non-domesticated, kick-ass, sexpot heroines who are so unlike myself.
The fantasy doesn’t come close to the reality.
Her hero doesn’t warm up her side of the bed when the temperature dips below 74*, and he doesn’t let her fall asleep on his chest to the weatherman’s report. Her hero doesn’t make her breakfast every Sunday morning precisely the way she likes it nor does he bring her coffee in bed so she can check her email on her smartphone. Her hero doesn’t laugh at her silly puns or groan at her jokes, nor does he watch Sam Elliott movies over and over and over again, simply because she wants to. Her hero doesn’t patiently teach his sons the life lessons he had to learn the hard way, knowing it’s a blessing to have lived long enough to do so, hoping to live longer to stand at their weddings, hold his grandbabies, and teach them how to stake a tent or buy a car.
That’s my Hero, the man I kiss every morning, and again every night. If only there were more hours in the day between, I’d kiss you even more.
I love you myHero. And kisses are about all I have to offer you.
That, and a Hershey bar.
After 30 years, it’s all we need.