A Story

I've told this a million times in person, but I've never written it. I thought it might be fun to try it in list form. beware, it's Very long.
  1. My family moves from NYC to LA in 1992, just in time for me to start 3rd grade.
  2. My mom scours Santa Monica for the perfect house in which to raise her two girls.
  3. After a year, she eventually walks into one that is blasting Fleetwood Mac during the open house, which she takes as a sign (since they're her favorite band).
  4. Mom buys the house from a local family who built and designed it themselves. They love the house but couldn't hold onto it anymore, so they move a couple of blocks away to another lovely home.
  5. I start school in the same grade as the little boy who lived in my new house. I quickly catch onto the fact that the 8-year-old girls like him and realize I can use this to buy myself some points and make some friends.
  6. I cut up the boy's red and white striped curtains into squares, put them in plastic baggies and sell them to the girls at school for 25 cents. It's a whole thing.
  7. Next thing I know his mom finds out and our moms are at a PTA meeting where my mom basically apologizes for me objectifying her son. His mom says he barely noticed- after all, he was an 8-year-old boy and the last thing on his mind is girls.
  8. We stay in school together for about four years and eventually move onto new adventures. I hear about him over the years, my mom bringing his father baskets of the fruit from the trees he originally planted in our yard. He loves guavas.
  9. I pay little to no attention, even after his father suffers a stroke and my mother encourages me to send my regards. I am young, caught up in my life and move onto college and post-grad life in NY. From time to time I see him on social media.
  10. In 2008, my mother suffers an aneurysm due to a brain tumor. needless to say it turns my world upside down and I start spending a lot more time back home in LA.
  11. One day in June 2009, after about 13 years, I pass him on the stairs by the Third Street Promenade. I am disheveled and running back home to care for my mother, who has just a couple of months left to live.
    I hear him call my name and pretend like I haven't seen him at first (even though I clearly have). He asks how I am and I say "great," lying through my teeth but not emotionally in a place to go there with the boy whose house I grew up in. I ask him the same question and he gives me the same response, while unbeknownst to me, he has been caring for his dad too, and his girlfriend has recently passed away. we are both in pain but don't want to bum the other person out.
  12. I see on Facebook that he's moved to NY that following week. I officially move back to LA that same week. He is sort of back in my head after that run-in in the parking garage, somewhere inside me I think it is too bad that we have switched coasts.
  13. After my mom passes away, I have a great big house to sift through with my stepdad, and we decide to put it up for sale within a year.
  14. As we pack up I notice that my mom has never really changed a thing. In fact, most of the details on the house are left over from the boy's mother all those years ago...she was an incredible seamstress and artist. Lace curtains in the kitchen, a painted bunny on my childhood closet door. I start to think of their family often.
  15. We sell the house exactly a year after my mother's death. it is difficult and at that time I am distracting myself with starting a new business, a new house...but I yearn for a connection to the past.
  16. I decide to write to him on Facebook and ask him to pass along a message to his mother: we sold the house, but it was a wonderful place to grow up. she put so much love into it and now a new family with young kids will get to enjoy it. I hope they are all doing well.
  17. I think he can sense the sadness in the tone of my writing. In our messages back and forth we start to open up to one another about everything we have been through - it feels like I can finally relate to someone after a long time of feeling alone.
  18. NY was short lived and he has moved home to LA. He asks if want to go out sometime. I say I am busy opening a juice shop but inside I feel something pulling me. On November 2, we open our first store and I call a friend and tell her I feel like I am on the brink of something big. But maybe even bigger than the business.
  19. A week later he shows up as I am closing down the store. I am kneeling over a crate of juices and look up and am taken aback. it is the first time I have seen him since that day on the stairs. It feel like my whole life flashes before my eyes and has been leading up to this moment. cheesy, but it's true.
  20. Right after our first official date, he takes me to see his mother and upon walking in the house, I feel the same energy of the home I grew up in. I cry in the bathroom- for my own mom, for the innocence of my childhood, for how grateful I am to feel at home for the first time in so long.
  21. A couple of months later, I find out that I'm pregnant. We freak out a little, and then celebrate. Who are we to decide what life has in store for us, after all the tragedy we've endured.
  22. It is May 2011 when his father passes away. Five months later I go into labor on the two-year anniversary of my mother's death.
  23. Suddenly here we are, a fatherless father and a motherless mother, 27 years old with a beautiful baby boy we name after his dad. We have no idea the healing that he will bring. We make a pillow for his nursery chair from the same fabric as the red and white striped curtains.
  24. Two years and a Lot of life later, we take our vows in a redwood forest among our closest family and friends. Our son carries the rings.
  25. It's been almost exactly two years since that beautiful day, and one more baby later. I think about how grateful I am that Fleetwood Mac was playing that day in the house, so that I could write that Facebook message all those years later. Best decision I ever made.