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Yesterday, he asked me to marry him. I knew without turning that he was in the doorway watching me brush my teeth. I could feel him standing there on the threshold of hope and expectation. The room lit up. Morning sun kind of stretched its arms through the corner window. Then it bounced off the porcelain and danced around the room.

“Would you like to marry me?” he asked. The amber twinkling in his eyes spoke more about loving me than the words he couldn't seem to find. That silly blonde mop, comical and frenzied from a full night of dreaming, poked and sprung like a bad wig. Tiny gaps between his front teeth peeked out behind his expectant grin. They made me want to throw my arms around him and nuzzle in the velvet spot between his ear and shoulder. A distant leaf blower, syncopated with the thumping of my heart. I noticed fingerprint smudges near the light switch by his head. I saw my ripped up flip flops, the ones from that wedding in Cabo with the turquoise sequins, lying on top of the stepstool. Next to them was my photo of two kids in a bubble bath. I almost laughed.

Other marriage offers flashed like fireflies through of my mind. But this one sparkled like the North Star, leading my heart home. It was sweet like the juice of a perfect cherry when it first drips down your tongue. My toothbrush was still in my hand, but I didn't care. I threw a smile back; afraid he'd notice my tears.

“I'd love to” I said. And we stood for a second, unsure what to do next. Then he said, “Wait here. I'm gonna go get my tie.” I listened as his little feet padded down the hall. I rinsed my mouth and put the toothbrush away. Then he was back in a dash, a blue and green striped necktie dangling around his neck. And he'd brought back something for me. A large plastic necklace he'd constructed from his snap together Zoob toy. He asked me to bend down, and I bowed so he could place it over my head. Then took my hands in his, and announced, “Now we do the married dance.” Unsure what the married dance might be, I did what all proper young brides would do, I allowed my beau to lead. With the care one might take to keep a melting ice cream from falling off of it's cone, he gently led me through the steps of a semi-simplified grapevine step, complete with pauses and crossovers. Barefoot, we danced this way, 5 or 6 times, across the terracotta tiles. “Okay,” he said. “Now kiss me”. And my heart, full as a harvest moon, tipped me toward the soft plum of his 4-year old lips. Then he took off his tie and dropped it near the toilet.

“What do you wanna do now?” he asked. Before I could answer, he turned, hopped three times and took off down the hall in search of another adventure.


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