“I’m selfish, impatient and a little insecure. I make mistakes, I am out
of control and at times hard to handle. But if you can’t handle me at my
worst, then you sure as hell don’t deserve me at my best.”  
                                                                   — Marilyn Monroe

This quote aptly explains where and who I was when I met Alpha Hubby.  After working my way back to wholeness, I was darn sure not wasting my fabulous “me-ness” on just any old bozo who came along!   I finally learned my worth and that I was worth being treated as valuable and precious.

I didn’t think I was “all that” but I deserved to be treated with respect and pure love.  I did not deserve to be abused.  I did not deserve to be cheated on with the entire town’s female population.  I did not deserve any mean scheming manipulating alcoholic-drugged-up verbally vicious mess who blamed everything wrong in his life on me or the weather or the mama or the abusive dad or the job or the boss or the car or the apartment or the bills or the whatever

I deserved peace in my life.  I deserved to be treated like I was precious, worth the trouble, someone’s dream.

And I wasn’t going to accept less than that.  I had major attitude.  And on the outside, people accepted that at face value.  Men knew I didn’t date and those who didn’t, finally quit asking in the face of persistent “no thank you’s.” 

You know what?  Deep inside very well hidden behind the attitude and bravery, tucked in beside my heart with other unfulfilled dreams, there was a teeny tiny spark of something nebulous.  A little unnamed hope – a dream – that maybe there could be true love for me.  That someone could see “me” and love me.  It was a fragile light that a whiff of doubt could have extinguished.

In spite of all the “I don’t need a man” or “I’m fine just the way I am” – truly I cherished that tiny flicker of light.  That it might come true.  No matter how my heart grieved*, I just couldn’t allow that flicker to burn out.   If I did, I believed it would be the end.  I didn’t know of what, I just knew to never allow myself to stop dreaming.

No one knew about that light.  My gosh, we women were far too liberated to ever admit we had that little flicker of light.  It was politically incorrect to harbor that dream so we all put on those “game faces” and keep on going forward, never allowing anyone to know.

So along comes Alpha Hubby, standing in the office cubicle opening, smiling at me.  Talking in that smooth drugging voice that lulled me into forgetting I had walls up.  A snaker charmer.  A Pied Piper.  Before I knew it, I would follow him anywhere.  Walls?  They crumbled, slowly but surely.  Not easily but thoroughly.

He respected me.  He respected me so much he asked my permission to kiss me the first time he did (oh my gosh who does that??).  He was old-fashioned, courting me, careful of my feelings, protective of my heart, and letting me know he was hot after my body (well, he was human, after all) but he refused to have it until after the wedding ceremony. 

He gave me everything I’d missed or never experienced before – as many romantic gestures as he could cram into the 7 weeks before we married.  No one had ever courted me.  No one had ever written me love notes.  No one had ever sent flowers.  No one asked about then listened to my dreams.  No one believed in me like he did and does.

He creates for me.  He finds out what I need then works to make it come to pass.  It started with a flower garden based on one I’d been around when I was younger.  I told him about it and how I loved it, and he went out and created one, just for me.  He builds areas and cabinets and ideas and thoughts I have.  He built me bigger rooms, pantrys, counters to expand kitchens, cleaner, more modern bathrooms –

And along the way, he built me up, helped me heal and he is everything I ever dreamed of in a knight in shining armor only better – because I didn’t know.  I didn’t know what a real man’s true love was like.  How could I have dreamed of something I didn’t know existed?  And how did it come true?

And unlike Cinderella, who was told by her Fairy Godmother**, “Yes, my child, but like all dreams, well, I’m afraid this can’t last forever. You’ll have only ’til midnight, and then…  On the stroke of twelve, the spell will be broken, and everything will be as it was beforemy fairy tale is still being written.

Happy Seventeenth Anniversary baby!  

“You know you’re in love when you can’t fall asleep because
reality is finally better than your dreams.”  — Dr. Seuss

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*A Dream is a Wish Your Heart Makes – Disney’s Cinderella

**Quote from Cinderella (1950)