As word spread of our engagement, I suddenly realized how many of my friends and family had given up on any chance of me ever getting married. Their reactions ranged from shock and awe, to stunned disbelief, to much joy and elation after it all sank in. But the prevailing emotion by far was relief. Huge, deafening sighs of relief.
Oh, ye of little faith. You didn’t think it was gonna happen, did you? Yeah, well, neither did I.
The response really was overwhelming and wonderful. Robby and I got a bunch of comments and “likes” on Facebook, plus a bunch more private emails and texts expressing beautiful sentiments like “Wishing you and Robby a lifetime of happiness,” or “May you enjoy many years of love and bliss together.”
Most of the retorts, however, sounded like this:
“Holy Mackeral!” “Sweet Jesus!” “Holy Mother of Something!” “Unfuckingbelievable!” “STFU!” “Get the F out!”
In the two months since getting engaged, we’ve received shrieks, screams, shouts, high-fives, fist bumps, hugs, kisses, and many thanks to God.
When I held up my left hand to my friend Bob Merlis, all he could do was point and yell “Rock!” When I shared the news with my friends/tennis pals Joanne and Kristen, their reactions were just as elegant. Joanne opened her mouth for a full ten seconds before anything came out. Her tongue-tied shock quickly turned into a ten second squeal, which turned into tears. Kristen just stood there in dumbfounded silence, mouth-agape, before throwing her arms around me.
I’ve also gotten incredulity, surprise, confusion, and bewilderment – and that was just from my parents. Here’s a snippet of the actual phone conversation I had with my mother:
Me: Hi it’s me. How are you?
Mom: Good, how are you?
Me: I’m engaged.
Mom: With what?
The truth is, no one was more shocked than me. Maybe because the proposal was so unexpected; or maybe because I didn’t have to pull teeth or twist arms to get it; or maybe because I was happy before it happened. All I know is that the experience was delightfully effortless, which is the way it should feel when it’s right (who knew?)
The whole thing has been absolutely surreal. I mean, one minute Robby and I are single people for life, the next minute we’re engaged. WTF!?