If my life were a romance novel, it would have to be in the chic-lit subgenre. I used to say my life was one big romantic comedy—or more accurately, the blooper reel! Fortunately, I’m now living my happily-ever-after, but it was wild ride to get here!
I won’t go all the way back to my ‘too young to know what I was doing’ marriage. At least I got an adorable daughter out of it.
I’d probably start with the guy who helped me pick up the pieces after that. Too bad I was in no mood for anything serious. He would have been a good guy to wind up with—and he had a boat. But no, for a few years there, I sabotaged anything that looked like it might be appropriate.
For instance, I was the Monday morning entertainment before the shift change at my hospital. (I was an RN in a psychiatric hospital.) And you thought the patients were crazy… Another unit always invited me over for lunch to hear my latest weekend escapades (i.e. dating disasters.) That is, until I began dating the head nurse’s son! No more lunch invites. They didn’t want to know…
Later, he told me his mother tried to warn him away from me. She called me a ‘heartbreaker.’ Heartbreaker? Me? I thought I was always the one getting my heart broken. Well, it was shortly after that that I met the guy I call Mr. Amazing. My wonderful husband of 22+ years. Sorry, head nurse’s son…you knew it wouldn’t last. Didn’t you? Your mother sure did.
So, anyway…my wonderful husband and I were set-up (without our knowledge.) A mutual friend tried to get us to agree to a blind date, knowing we’d be perfect for each other. We both refused.
Not one to be discouraged, she planned a ‘night out dancing.’ That wasn’t unusual. What was unique about this time, however, was that instead of ‘the gang’ showing up, it was just she and her boyfriend, Mr. Amazing and me. They picked us both up, so we met in their back seat, checked each other out, and thought, Hmmm…
It took about 15 minutes to figure out we’d been tricked. And in another 15 minutes we didn’t care. That night we had what I call a ‘mind-locked conversation’. For 3 hours the whole place and everyone in it fell away. Between dancing and sitting down to catch our breath we told each other our whole life stories.
I had just come out of a relationship with a pathological liar (another blooper reel) so Mr. Amazing’s honesty was incredibly refreshing. I felt like I was breathing again for the first time in months.
He wanted to drive me home, so they dropped us off at his place to borrow his brother’s more reliable car. Now, in all the time I dated what’s-his-real-name (who turned out to be a spy—I kid you not) I never saw where he lived. I knew he travelled and his job had something to do with computers…yuh, right.
But when Mr. Amazing brought me to the apartment he shared with his brother, guess what? There really was a brother! And he really did have a car! And he really did take me where he said he was going to take me. We’ve been together ever since.
The longest we’ve been apart is two weeks and it seemed like years…to both of us. So, now I go on business trips with him if it’s going to be that long and he’s visiting someplace I’d like to see. We usually tack on a few extra days and see the country together. He’s taken me to India, Switzerland, Spain…and those were just working vacations. For real vacations, he’s taken me to Hawaii and on several Caribbean cruises. Next April we’re going to Italy.
In those early years I had imagined a life like this, but had no idea how I’d ever get from there to here. Well, all it took was a whole lot of ‘hanging in there’ and not giving up. Even when life was a blooper reel from a romantic comedy.
Ashlyn Chase is the award-winning author of many paranormal and erotic romance titles, including the Strange Neighbors series, Immortally Yours, Dear Sexy Lexie, and Demolishing Mr. Perfect. She lives in New Hampshire.