How I Met Your Father Part 1
"Ohhhhhhhhh! So you're married to a doctor..."
The type of person who says this to me always does it with an eyebrow raise and a smirk. Indicating they know, and I know, that I married The Good Doctor, at least in part, because of his job. Riiiight? Wink wink.
I usually nod politely and change the subject. But here's what I'm really thinking. Are you effing serious? That's hecka rude, first of all. And secondly, HA!!!! Not that I don't appreciate his job, or his wonderful boss, or congenial colleagues, no, no, no. Please keep that direct deposit depositing. Student loans aren’t paying themselves.
But our history goes so far back it would take up an entire corridor at the Santa Rosa History museum. If such a museum were to exist. We met...prepare yourself...when he was an 8th grader and I was a 9th grader. I was in advanced math, not because I'm good at math, but because Asians are good at math and I got lumped in with them. He was in DOUBLE advanced math, because he is a freak. So there we were, on the first day of school, and since this is my blog, I can tell the story how I want and he can't dispute it, neener neener neener. I saw him, the tallest, whitest boy in class, with a giant head and a mouthful of braces. And for some reason unknown to man, I thought to myself, HE IS CUTE! He will say he noticed me on the first day, in my cheerleading uniform, Go Purple and Gold, one of the ugliest color combos possible. But I know he didn't. He was too busy talking to his surfer friend, the only other 8th grader in this class. They were both freaks.
Fast forward a semester, during which we had, oh...ZERO contact. Then Mr. Spillane re-assigned our seats. And put him right in front of me. Him, with the giant head, me, with the 5' 2" barely-see-over-my- desk-as-it-is body. And I don't know how or when he turned around, but that's where it started. The flirting over my brown Hello Kitty mechanical pencil. (I was obsessed with those mechanical pencils, always perfectly sharp!) Then there was the time he made some joke and I was laughing so hard my gum fell into, and got STUCK in, my hair. Like, had to cut it out with scissors stuck. Or the time I came back from a field trip to a water park and waved to him from the bus. Wearing my bikini top. What a little hussy I was! (Note: Emmy, you will not be allowed to wear a two piece bathing suit until you are 37.) Little by little, we started to fall into Like. That totally sweet, junior high, talk about him for 2000 hours on the phone with your friends Like.
That summer, a lot of things fell into place. His best friend lived right by me. So he was always there, and we would all hang out. Eating Keebler Grasshopper cookies and drinking grape soda and watching scary movies as an excuse to sit close to each other. It was the best summer. Just running into him sometimes when I was walking my dog in the neighborhood. Those little fleeting moments when your 14 year old self just gets all fluttery and giddy and out of breath. But then the summer ended. I went off to high school, and he stayed in junior high. And we sort of lost touch. It was during the time before every teen had a cell phone permanently secured to her palm with thumbs conditioned to text 35 times a minute. It was during the Jurassic period of teendom, when stegosaurs still walked the Earth.
And then he shattered his heels. Jumping off a roof. He didn't make it. Long story short, he and his friends were roaming around on the roof a local shopping center and they tripped some alarms near a bank. Instead of hanging with his hands from the roof and dropping the additional, oh, 8 inches, to the ground like his buddies did, The Good Doctor went for it, 007 style. But without the Daniel Craig landing. Crashing down on his pointy heels which then splintered into little itty bits that required a bunch of titanium to piece back together.
So when I heard about his accident, I called him. Like hey, remember me? We were mad crushing on each other last summer and now I hear you're in a wheelchair and doing homeschool. And the response I got was: uhh, hi.
Me: So how are you?
Him: Um. Pause. OK.
Me: I just wanted to call and see how you're doing. I heard what happened. I'm so sorry.
Me: So what are you doing now?
Him: Pause. Um. Pause. Nothing.
Me: Well...um...okay. Just wanted to say hi. Hope you feel better.
Him: Thanks...(more awkward silence)
Me: (Thinking WTMF?) OK, well, bye.
Him: Bye (Click of the phone hanging up)
I was like, Well, that sucked. I felt like Sandy when she ran into Danny after their summer singing "You're the one that I want. One that I, one that I want. Ooo ooo ooo" and getting the royal DISS.
Two weeks later, I got the nerve to call again, thinking maybe I just caught him at a bad time. Reference the above conversation, add in a few more awkward pauses, and that's how the second conversation went. Not Good At All.
I TOTALLY wrote him off after that. Nobody puts Baby in a corner. I vowed to never call that jerk again. I mean, what the hell? I thought we were at least friends after our summer of puppy love.
Months later, summer vacation again. My phone rings. It's him. I'm like, Oh, hi.