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Getting To The Church

Updated on September 24, 2012

What Was The Question???


His nervousness during dinner and shyness over coffee in that small cafe in Summit suddenly was overcome by his anxiousness to leave.

He quickly announced, "Let's get out of here!"

It had become a rush to pay the check and leave. A simple reply to his statement caused a frenzy that further complicated his behavior. I was confused and slightly amused as this was an unseen side of him. I didn’t have a chance to ask what his statement meant before we were up and making a quick departure. We had spent time discussing weekend plans, work day problems and even the weather.

And then out of nowhere his awkward statement, “You wouldn’t want to marry an old man like me.”

I didn’t ask if it was a question or what it even meant.

I just answered, “I wouldn’t say no.”

He was now anxious to leave and it was clear he did not want to spend any more time talking over coffee. So, with no clarification of what was just said we were on our way to the car after tossing a tip on the table and paying the check. I was rushed from the restaurant to the car without a word and then kissed very passionately, before the car door was even opened. With an embrace, a kiss and a teary eyed smile we were beginning the journey of our lifetime. Why he had picked that place and time could never fully understood. He could never fathom my answer as being a “Yes” and worried a “No” would bring an end to what we had at that time. He wanted things to change but not to end. And, yet he could not ask the question.

Assumptions can be life changing, why didn’t he think of that. He was assuming I didn’t want things to change. I was assuming he didn’t want to make a commitment to me. I knew he wasn’t seeing Ruth any longer ( I never asked why, just happy he wasn’t) but he never asked me for an exclusive relationship. I was never introduced to his children and I didn’t even know if they knew about me. Something I would never ask him because I was assuming he didn’t want to share that part of his life. I wanted things to change but not to end.

Assumptions can be dangerous in relationships. Why, didn’t I think of that? He could only make an assumption that I would never say yes and I was assuming he would never ask. So, without a question and the risk of an answer of “no” no longer an issue he assumed we had just become engaged. This was confirmed later as we sat in the park at the end of my street and he began talking about us shopping for a ring.

He admitted he tried to ask several times before but would back off out of fear. We would go to some really romantic places and he chose a noisy, smoky coffee shop on Route 83 on our way home from Summit to make an attempt at a proposal. His explanation was that he needed to know right there and then.

Fear does strange things to us. He was afraid of ruining the romance of a starry night. He did really try to make our dates perfect and romantic. A no to his question of marriage at the end a perfect evening, he admitted would have devasated him. But, a disappointing no at the end of a bad day at work had a very right fit to it. A not so perfect ending for a far from perfect day.

What He Attempted To Say

His disappointment did come later as we sat on a bench in the park at the end of my street and I said “No”.

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    • Talia9210 profile image

      Talia Harper 4 years ago from North Dakota

      What an elegantly written story. Written with a tender heart and a careful hand, this story is romantic enough to capture the whimsy of love and real enough to be relatable in this age. Wonderfully done! Voted up and beautiful!

    • sweethearts2 profile image
      Author

      sweethearts2 5 years ago from Northwest Indiana

      Bettyoverstreet10,

      Thank you for you for your encouragement. Looking forward to your return

    • Bettyoverstreet10 profile image

      Betty (Alawine) Overstreet 5 years ago from Vacaville, Ca.

      Loved your story! What a wonderful style of writing. i will be looking forward to reading more. Betty

    • sweethearts2 profile image
      Author

      sweethearts2 5 years ago from Northwest Indiana

      Phoebe Pike,

      Good to see you here

    • profile image

      Phoebe Pike 5 years ago

      Wow.

    • profile image

      Sueswan 5 years ago

      Hi sweethearts2

      Yes, assumptions can be very dangerous. Would you have said yes, if he asked you with confidence?

      Voted up and awesome.

    • Amy Becherer profile image

      Amy Becherer 5 years ago from St. Louis, MO

      You are a rare woman, sweethearts, in resisting the romantic moment of a starry night. He saw how special you are, which intimidated him. It must have been very hard for him, but his fear was his undoing with a woman of courage. I so admire your forethought, your careful attention to the nuances that many would brush aside in the shadows of the moonlight. And, though he felt honestly devastated, it was your courage that rescued both of you from the pattern you saw early on that would have left you unsatisfied and as a result, eventually, him as well. Unusually beautiful story of great depth written with a tender hand and a brilliant mind.

    • Mhatter99 profile image

      Martin Kloess 5 years ago from San Francisco

      Thank you for sharing your story. let me share this (it is by no means universally true). Arlene & I were friends,then we dated. It was different. Then we moved in together. It was different. Then we married. It was different,

    • sweethearts2 profile image
      Author

      sweethearts2 5 years ago from Northwest Indiana

      You never disappoint and I wonder when you sleep. Thank you for being here and the comment. You certainly provide encouragement.

    • rcrumple profile image

      Rich 5 years ago from Kentucky

      To add your last line after the video is unfair, but genius! The old saying holds true for the gentleman here, "Take the u and me out of assume, and that's what you'll become."

      Great story! Held me all the way!