*Part 9 in The Tour Guide series. You can read Part 8 here.
The Tour Guide and I never stopped communicating. We called each other every day just to check in, make sure the other was alright. I wanted to make sure The Tour Guide knew I wasn’t going anywhere. I was still there. He wanted me to know the same. We still talked about everything. We were best friends.
I proceeded with my therapy session. First I saw the Psychiatrist, Dr. M. He asked some questions and I explained everything to him. He said that sometimes once you get going down the road into depression, you just can’t get back up without a little help. The chemical imbalance is a vicious cycle. He prescribed me Celexa and referred me to a therapist in his office. After the first two weeks on medication and my first therapy session I was already feeling like my old self again. My therapist, Dr. P, said I won’t be on the medication very long in her opinion and we scheduled another session. After the second session she said she didn’t see the need for me to schedule another. She’d be there if I needed her, but I haven’t needed her again.
The Tour Guide gives me a wake-up call every morning. One morning my phone rang for my wake-up call. He was quiet at first. Then, “I’ve made a big mistake.” “What do you mean, what mistake?”, I asked. “I never should have told you I just want to be friends. I don’t want that. I miss you.” I replied, “I’m right here, hon. I’m not going anywhere.” So we made a fresh start – as much of a fresh start as two people who know each other so well can make. It wasn’t exactly starting over. But we tried to forget what was behind.
We started making plans for The Tour Guide to visit me in April. That was going to be the first opportunity he’d have for vacation time. We both got impatient, though. That seemed like an awfully long time to wait. The last time we’d seen each other was in September. Seven months. Far too long. So I took a week off from work and flew to England to see him again at the end of February.
Instead of planning something for us to do every day, we played it by ear. We relaxed and did whatever we wanted when the notion struck us. The only real plans we had were to travel to Farnborough so I could meet his friends, Jane and Michael. I had a fabulous time. We had wine, ate chip sandwiches, listened to music and danced. Michael and Jane left the room for a few minutes and The Tour Guide and I were alone. Sitting next to each other on Jane’s sofa I leaned over, kissed him softly, and said, “Will you marry me?”. He didn’t take me seriously, but said, “Yeah, okay, I’ll marry you, when you get down on one knee.” We continued on in our evening, spent the night at Jane’s and Michael’s, and the next day made the drive back to his place in Midsomer Norton.
I suppose that had been on his mind for the entire rest of the time, but he didn’t let on. Finally he said, “Right, we need to talk about something.” “Alright, what do we need to talk about?” “Well, at Jane’s and Michael’s you’d had a couple of glasses of wine, and you asked me to marry you. I need to know. Was that the alcohol talking or did you mean that?” “Wait right here”, I said. I went to my luggage, took out the wedding rings my mother wore when she married my dad, and came back to the living room. I showed him the rings, and said, “I was very serious. I knew I was going to ask you before I left home. That’s why I brought these with me. I knew you were afraid to bring it up because you didn’t want to pressure me, and I knew you’d have a hard time asking me again. So I’m asking you. Will you marry me?” “Yes, I’ll marry you.”
|The Tour Guide and Me|
We had the most fabulous time together. His daughters came over and we spent a couple of days with them. We went to the park together, grocery shopped together, I cooked them some Southern Chicken and Rice. We took the girls home and the next day I flew home.
This time I had butterflies in my stomach and a ring on my finger. Looking forward to my future, no longer looking back at the past. I’m going to marry that tall, handsome Brit who irons my clothes and makes me coffee – the one who wakes me up every morning with, “Ello, gorgeous girl”, and calls me “baby girl”. I have no idea why The Tour Guide is crazy about me, but I know he is. And I’m crazy about him.
What prompted the change of heart? What helped me get past my paralyzing fear? I already knew what it meant to love another. The Tour Guide has shown me what it means to be loved. I’ll leave you with this quote that I heard in an interview during my search. When asked what the most important pieces of advice he wanted to pass on to his children were, Steven Hawking said, “One, remember to look up at the stars and not down at your feet. Two, never give up work. Work gives you meaning and purpose and life is empty without it. Three, if you are lucky enough to find love, remember it is rare and don’t throw it away.” I’ve been lucky enough to find it, I’m not throwing it away.