Once, a long time ago, I looked up the distance between Dundalk, Ireland, and Los Angeles, CA. I seem to recall that it came to something like, 5,200 miles (and some change). In 2007, you decided to move 5,200 miles (and some change) to be with me (and my crazy cat).
Due to living arrangements at the time, you slept on couches (thanks, Jeff), spare bedrooms (thanks, Jess and Carly), icky hotels, and eventually my mother’s living room with some vintage quilts and a Transformers fleece blanket until the very last day your visa allowed you to stay in the country. Some people alternate apartments or towns-we alternated countries: Ireland, back to the U.S., Australia, back to the U.S….
Days were based on time differences for Skyping and cell phone calls (until the month of the $2,000 phone bill; sorry ’bout that. Oh, wait, and that time I called you in Abu Dhabi), and G-Chats. And just when we were looking into Fiance visas-and their astronomical costs – due to an amazing stroke of luck: just a stop over just to say “Hi” to some former clients, you were able to stay for good.
Other than world’s worst immigration interview (which, 2 years later, is really funny-honest. And all I have to say to anyone who needs to have one: don’t cough in front of the immigration officer. Seriously, hold it in until you turn blue-just don’t cough), we’ve had a pretty smooth road for which I’m grateful.
One crazy cat, a house, the world’s tiniest pool, a wedding here, a wedding in Ireland, and a permanent residency for you-here we are four and a half years later. You are stuck with me. I don’t cook much, seem to be physically unable (I think it’s a disorder) to actually get my shoes in the closet, I book weddings on your birthday, our first anniversary, and the day we (er, you) moved into our new house. I spend an obscene amount of money on cereal and cleaning products (yet I hate grocery shopping) and am constantly trying new and weird eating habits-all of which you accept (and even shop and cook for). I laugh when your hair gets all fluffy, at your accent, and your obsession with finding just the right shade of brown socks to go with your jeans. And you laugh with me.
I’m not very expressive (during our wedding, I even handed you my vows and just asked if you could read what I wrote to you), not very affectionate at times (except when I’m sad or cold), and still can’t fold clothes the way you like them (you know, neatly).
But, I want to thank you. Bad wife aside, you make me want to be a nicer person…no wait, you make me want to be, not just a nicer person, but a better person. The snarky streak I’ve always had just vanished when I met you.
This year, I may have booked another wedding on your birthday (but I got you a really awesome birthday gift-promise) and still make fun of your accent, but know that I absolutely adore you. I’m lucky to have met you and can’t wait for what’s in store for us.
*Photo by www.pictureit.ie