Three years ago I walked away from the rest of my life.  I was at the PA Renaissance Faire in far less clothing than I generally dare.  He caught my eye and approached me while the guy I was with was in the privvy (that’s the bathroom for those of you who do not frequent Renaissance Faires) and lured me in with promises of free raffle tickets if I grabbed a flag for the parade.  I blushed as he mocked my flag waving abilities, but we chatted the entire parade route, much to the confusion of my companion.  After that he was back to work and I was lost inside myself.  Who was he?  Had he really been flirting or was I delirious from wearing a corset all day?  Surely, the lack of oxygen was starting to wear me down.  Would I ever see him again? Not likely, I decided.

Walking towards the gate I went into panic mode.  What if I didn’t ever see him again?  What if I was missing out on something?  Did I miss what could have been a wonderful exchange by being shy?  Should I have said something different?  It was too late, but I couldn’t help but kick myself for something I was sure I should have done.  I stopped for one last privvy break before the long drive home and took a deep breath.  Something had to happen.  I knew it.

Somehow I convinced my companion I had lost my debit card back at the booth my mystery man worked, and as I ran down the hill to the last place I had seen him I tried to think of something to say.  This was entirely unfamiliar territory for me.  I wasn’t the girl who went back.  I wasn’t the girl who gave my number unsolicited or talked to people I didn’t know.  I had missed a lot of opportunities in the past, and had admonished myself for weeks for being spineless.  Maybe it was the corset, but I had a surge of terrified courage I had never felt before.  I was going to talk to this guy, and if I exploded from embarrassment when he rejected me then so be it.

After the longest jog in a corset and gypsy bell skirt in history I made it to the other end of the shire, and there he was.  After a brief exchange concerning the debit card that was still safely tucked in my belt pouch I noticed him looking at me strangely.  Then he stopped looking at me altogether.  Not a good sign, my friends.  He apologized and told me it was hard for him to be a gentleman in the state I was in.  As it turns out, not only was I tired of being in a corset, but it was tired of being on me.  My jog had dislodged my chest just enough for me to fall out of  the top, and I was for all intents and purposes topless.

After that how can you not give a nice young lad your number?  He asked, and I took his number down.  It wasn’t until days later I realized the area code was wrong.  I don’t know where 619 is, but there is someone there wondering who I am and why I left them three messages about the PA Renaissance Faire.  Eventually we did meet, though.  Our first meeting we talked so long I missed my bus to work.  The next night he showed up with a bottle of mead and a pair of blue devil horns.

Not a day goes by that I don’t wonder what my life would be like had I walked through the Exit gate and never gone back that day.  I can’t imagine him not being my husband.  I can’t imagine us not having this life.  I can’t believe I almost let it all go because I was too self conscious to talk to him.  What if he had just been another “what if”?

This lesson has followed me since that day.  I’ve used it whenever my fears of failing or looking foolish try to stop me from trying.  I’ve used it building this poly family.  I’ve used it at work.  What would our lives be like if we got over ourselves enough to just live them?

As I said before, three years ago I walked away from the rest of my life.  Thank gods I walked back.

I love you, hunny!  It’s you and me.  Always.  Happy Anniversary.