There was a knock at the door.....

There was a knock at the door and the memories came flooding back to that day – the day that my life changed forever. That day is etched in my mind as if it happened only yesterday, the anniversary of our second date, the date that changed our lives forever.

I had been a single Mum for a few years and I had no intention of ever getting married again or having a permanent partner either. Men could not be trusted they were cheaters and liars and always let you down. I would console my loneliness with affirmations that I was better off alone, men only complicated things, I don’t want to upset my children, and affirm they did.

Nights out with girlfriends on weekends off from being Mum, would be filled with them trying to set me up or meet a bloke to take home for a bit of fun. This is not what I wanted – some stranger in my bed, I would rather be alone than let that happen. The going out scene just didn’t work for me. I had no confidence in the way I looked, I didn’t like to drink or do drugs, so the party scene just didn’t fit me. Each time I went out and didn’t get “chatted up” I further had my idea affirmed because that’s the message I sent to ant man who tried to talk to me. I ensured I was living my self fulfilling prophecy.

Then one day a friend convinced me that I should try something different and chose to meet guys I knew were single, by registering a profile on a singles site on the internet. She sat down and did all the work as she knew me well enough to answer most of the questions without my help. Eventually I warmed to the idea because her suggestion of meeting other people in the same situation as me might increase my friendship group and I might meet men that I could take out with me for group dinners, parties and sorts.

So I took the first step and went on some dates, picking people I thought I might have something in common with, so then I would at least have something to talk about with them over a coffee and a chat. How naïve was I? I believed that people actually wrote the truth on their profiles – I had – maybe that was why I had not many contacts? I refused to change my profile to make me something I was not in order to meet men. I had compromised when I first got married and I was never doing that again, they would just have to accept me for me.

Several more dates I went on and then I met this bloke. We had lots in common, we talked a lot, he was financially secure, he didn’t want any kids of his own as he felt he was too old to start a family, however he was “open” to someone else’s kids. So several dates we had, long conversations on the phone and then I slowly began to realise he never asked about me or my kids. He didn’t want to see me unless it was ‘kid free’ and casual sex is all he was interested in. I stopped calling, he eventually stopped ringing; that chapter was closed.

I had decided that I would give it one more month and then I was going to get off the site, twelve months of ‘this’ was getting me down. I was only meeting men that wanted one thing, and that was not my deal. I was sitting up late one night and I saw this picture of this man – he really caught my eye. Can’t tell you exactly what it was but I went back to his profile several times and finally decided to make contact. He made contact back very much to my surprise, as many I had contacted before had said they were not interested before we even met.

Emails were exchanged, getting to know each other after reading each one. It seemed to good to be true as we had a common profession, he had two children like me, he liked many of the things I did and he like doing the same kind of activities. Family was also very important to him. Each email I read our lives began to unfold I just hoped it was all true because at this stage we still hadn’t met face to face.

Phone numbers we eventually exchanged and he rang me pretty much straight away he left a message as I had gone out for the day. With great nervousness I returned his call, half hoping he wouldn’t be there, the other half silently hoping he would. What was I going to say if he answered? He answered my call that night and an hour and a half later we got off the phone, conversation came naturally.

Several more phone calls resulted in us finally setting up a date to meet each other physically. We agreed to meet for a drink in an open place that way we could make an easy exit if need be. One drink turned into two and then we decided that we would have a meal. Five hours passed but it seemed like seconds, this man was actually everything he had said himself to be and more. We parted our ways after he walked me to my car, he didn’t try to kiss me, just said “I will give you a call.” Part of me thought this wouldn’t happen because that line had been used many times before.

When I got home I sent him a thank you email and said if interested we could do a movie the next night. He rang me later that day asking what time and where and the most important question of all – what did I want to see? He organised in an old fashioned way to pick me up and bring me home, the first time any second date had been like this, it was refreshing to say the least.

With nervous anticipation I readied myself for my date. Changed my clothes what seemed like a million times, applied my make up and did my hair. Then I sat and waited. I thought he wasn’t coming because he was late, I never considered he might have gotten lost. Then there was a knock at my door and there he was ten minutes late. I thought he looked amazing in his blue check shirt and very neat navy pants, I was pleasantly impressed. He stepped into the entry hall whilst I got my handbag, as we were going out the door he made a comment on how wonderful my children looked in the photo on the wall once again I was pleasantly impressed. All the dates that I had been on not one man had made comment about that picture on my wall maybe his words were true, family really was important to him.

That second date turned into several more that eventually turned into a marriage. Finally I had found, when I wasn’t looking, the perfect person for me.

So this night this unusually timed knock on the door brings my memories to the fore. As I open the door my breath is taken away, there he is standing with an enormous bouquet, “Happy Anniversary Babe!”

There was a knock at the door.....

eraserlynch

Maida Vale, Australia

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Short Story

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