The Life I Never Imagined

“Are you nervous?” I leaned over and asked Adam.

We were standing across the football field, facing a screaming crowd of teenagers, parents, children, and teachers at the Bellmont High School Homecoming football game.

“No, not really- are you?” he asked me.

We were nominated for Homecoming King and Queen. The scene was all too familiar because just two years before we both represented our sophomore class during Homecoming. I tripped over a flower pot then- so I was truly expecting something to happen this time….

“Well, I do think I might trip and land on my face. Maybe rip my dress,” I said.

He laughed. Then I laughed. We both knew this was a perfectly realistic situation. And since my dress was so tight, I decided not to wear undies.
I stopped laughing.

This would be a really tragic situation if I ripped my dress. How about I start thinking about something else? Okay, I shouldn’t have worn these shitty heels. That are too small. Oh boy, here we go….

“Next, we have Ashley Bedwell and Adam Arnold,” the announcer said.

“That’s us!” I whispered as we started walking across the field.

I definitely shouldn’t have the worn heels.
“Ashley is planning on attending Ball State University and living with her best friend Toni Suarez,” the announcer started.

I started smiling. My little Toni! I was so excited to live with her at college. I didn’t know it then, but living with her was one of the best decisions of my life.

“She is planning on majoring in Journalism and once she graduates she intends to move to New York City and write for Cosmo magazine. Or become the next Oprah.”

The crowd start laughing. I really did want to move to New York or take over Oprah’s job. I didn’t know why they were laughing. Because in a few years, I’ll be back in my pencil skirt, business shirt, tall black pumps, and a Blackberry. Did they have Blackberries back then? Who knows? If they did, I surely didn’t have one.

But I’d definitely have my pen and paper to take quick notes. And a nice camera. Oh and long brown hair. Do you picture me as a successful writer in New York yet?

That would be my life. I was certain of it.

*****

Then I met Justin Sieb. In his black Ball State t-shirt and khaki shorts. Standing on the front porch, he introduced himself as “the cool guy the hangs out here” and I screamed back in “I’m Ashley Mother $#A*&# Bedwell never forget it!!!!”

He certainly never forgot it.

And by the time I ran into him on the stairs, I forced him to my beer pong partner. The only time I was EVER good at beer pong. We won the game. Made the same cup at the same time to win the game. I told him he was my soulmate and the rest is history.

My life changed here.

****
On Tuesday night, Toni came over to watch “Sex and the City 2” – Justin cooked us dinner and we drank wine. Laughing about old times, comparing ourselves to the movie, and catching up on life.

Justin was obviously forced to watch the movie with us because we only have one TV in the apartment.

I always pictured myself as Carrie. The writer. Living in New York. You get the comparison? And of course, her desperate search for romance and finding her one true love.

I don’t want to spoil the movie for you, but Carrie marries her true love Big in the first movie. In the second movie, you see there marriage in a different light. The laying on the couch, watching TV, and eating take out kind of marriage. He never wanted to go out and she did. He was happy just being in their house together and she still wanted the red carpet and night life.

The marraige seems to be in shambles, but the love is still alive. She goes to the Middle East with her girls, runs into her ex, kisses him, and tells Big that night. He doesn’t know what to say and doesn’t pick her up from the airport. Alone, she realizes that all her life she wanted Big to just pick her. Stay in her apartment. Sleep with only her. Love only her. And now he finally has, and she isn’t happy? What’s wrong with her? I’ll let you find out the ending for yourself… =)

****
Later that night, Justin leaned over in bed and rubbed my back.

“I’m sorry- I know you want big things in your life and want to do extravagant things,” Justin said.

 He was a little buzzed from his whiskey and cokes.

“What?” I rolled over and said. I knew what he was saying, but I wanted to get more out of him.

“Just watching that movie- I’m sorry,” he said.

I didn’t know what to say. Because part of me is like Carrie because part of me really wanted that life.

And then I heard him start snoring. He passed out. I didn’t even have a chance to respond.

I started laughing. And that’s when I realized I am Carrie and Justin is Big. The married Carrie and Big.

I’m happy. And I don’t know that I could say the same if I were living alone in the Big City. No amount of high heels or pencil skirts could make me feel as beautiful Justin does.

Yes, I’m living a life that I never imagined.

But I’m happy. I’m married to the love of my life. We fall asleep watching TV together and order Chinese takeout when the mood is right. We laugh nonstop and do ridiucolus dances in our living room to Youtube videos.

So I’ll keep writing from my couch in Indidna. With my husband, who I never thought I would ever be blessed enough to love this much.

Much love,
Ashley

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