One Year Ago Today
My favorite memory with the love of my life
I do not regret the events that lead me to this time. It's the events that lead me to Ade and that is the one thing I will never regret. It was at my lowest and darkest point in my life and somehow Ade just knew what I needed and wanted. Whether or not we make it through, I'll always be thankful for Ade and all he did. If it wasn't for him, I would still be miserable and alone.
Published on LatinoLA: July 7, 2012
It was one month after Marcus's birthday and I had decided to try and gain back my independence from him. Kim and I called it the 'Pre-Marcus' life and I tried everything and it failed. The NKOTBSB concert I went to with Carilly and Rusti helped until I saw a couple three rows down holding each other during the Backstreet Boys' romantic ballad. Getting home that night, I decided to give myself one more week before giving up. I had already accepted that I would never get married, so might as well accept I won't be happy either.
Kim and Carilly always talked me out of my crazy thoughts, but I think after the first ten times they just said things to make me stop. So I went out and got a third opinion, in the form of my pledge sister Kalli. We met up for lunch on a Saturday and, before dessert, I brought up my Marcus dilemma. The all important question then came up. 'Do you love him?' At that point, I said 'yes' because it was true and Kalli told me that's all that matters. No one can tell you what to do because ultimately it is my choice. After we finished dessert and left, I decided on a new course: try and live my life and if Marcus decides to come back, then go back to being with Marcus.
The other reason I met up with Kalli for lunch was the next day was a sorority day at Disneyland. Kalli was not going to it because she lives so far away. Most of the girls were meeting right at 8 am and, deciding sleep was more important, I would meet up around 10 am. However, we all were getting t-shirts and not wanting to carry my shirt the rest of the day, I woke up at 7:30 am and headed out to the park.
In between hugging and introducing myself to everyone, behind the crowd I saw him. It was a short glance and immediately went back to the sisters. It must have been that quick glance because, from Ade's version, that was all it took for Ade to fall in love. Me, however, I was just there to have fun and catch up with some of the sisters I don't see as much. What really caught my attention, and made me giggle, was us being partners on It's A Small World. During the ride, Ade called out 'Hey look! It's Perry.' I heard that and started to giggle because, probably out of everyone in the boat, knew what he was talking about. I didn't see his reaction because I quickly turned away but I'm pretty sure Ade heard me.
We weren't paired together until the afternoon bathroom break. I was talking to one of the sisters until Ade slowly came up and said 'Hi.' No guy, ever, had come up to me before and at first I was surprised. Then we started up a conversation about shows and things we like to do. Ade, later on, told me he was nervous to talk to me but knew he had to before I left. At first, I was being nice to Ade but after a few rides I started feeling comfortable. For the first time, even during the times Marcus was being a 'boyfriend,' I started feeling genuinely loved and important. Though in the back of my mind, I figured he was just being nice too.
Ade and I left the group and got on the Mark Twain boat, which there was no waiting but was super packed. It would have been my favorite memory of that day if I didn't pull a Jess and fell down on the stairs. I was so embarrassed but Jake, to make me feel better when we would talk about that day, said I was nervous about what was happening.
'Why Ade?' I would ask him, knowing what he meant. Ade just laughed and replied, 'Why it was the exact time I knew you were the one.' Then I would laugh and say, 'Was that before or after I fell?' Ade would laugh again as he held me in his arms and would just kiss me.
Once the boat floated away, and after I got over my embarrassment, we headed up to the deck and kept talking. At one point during the conversation, Ade reached over and held my hand (which he had been doing before). My conversations were based on Marcus experiences at first, but after a while (and running out of ideas) I just started to have deep conversations with him. Before I knew it, Ade had gotten close to me and put his arm around my waist. That moment on the boat was a real turning point for me in both ways. I had this guy with his arm around me and could possibly want to be more than friends. However, I felt I was cheating on Marcus (which was so stupid because we were nothing more than friends with some benefits).
Rusti and even my uncle, Robert, told me I need to take a chance on a guy, whether or not it was Marcus. At that time, I didn't believe I could do that. To me, I had found the guy and I had to do whatever it takes to get Marcus to like me. If I couldn't have Marcus, I would never find a guy like him. That moment on the boat was probably my best chance, but I was still scared of rejection. I didn't want to mess up this friendship I was making with Ade and decided to let things happen on its own. After the boat we met up with the group, just to check in, and then we headed to California Adventures. Personally, I could care less about the park because there's not much to do but Ade loves it so, for the sake of the friendship, I went along.
Soarin' Over California is his favorite ride and a must to get on, so that's what we decided to get on. I think, even to this day, that ride is still my one favorite ride. We get in line, which wasn't a long wait, and Ade goes back to holding my hand and then my waist during the whole time. It hit me right before we got on the ride: I have to take a chance and see if Jake's interests were the same as mine. Deep down, I wanted Ade because he was everything I always wanted Marcus to be: caring, loving, and having deep non-Star Wars/RPing (role playing) conversations. Immediately the image of Marcus kissing me at Venice Beach came in, and I was close to backing out. It was stupid of me to think I was cheating on Marcus, but then I thought about all the other girls he went out with. I fought the urge and decided this is what I need to move on.
We got off the ride and headed outside, without a word. He was still holding my hand, of course, and where I stopped him we just passed the restaurant next to the ride. I do not remember what exactly Ade said, but I remember what I replied. 'So do you want to make this official, Ade?' The same words I would shout to Marcus when we would fight came out as a question and I closed my eyes, waiting for that all too familiar rejection. A second after saying those words, I realized I shouldn't have said that. I really like Ade and either way I wanted to still see him (and now have a Disneyland buddy to go with).
Ade looked at me and smiled as he replied, 'Yes babe. You are my girlfriend now, officially.' He then leaned forward and kissed me. Of course Marcus had always kissed me in private, but somehow Jake's kiss had more meaning, more feeling in it. To me, that was my very first kiss. After that moment, everything was different. I felt like a different person and, for the first time, was being treated like a girlfriend. The night ended with the fireworks with us sharing our first official kiss as boyfriend and girlfriend.
At that point, it was only a group of six girls that stayed so they knew what happened. I found out a year later, every single Theta girl were betting on us hooking up before lunch.
After the fireworks, we all headed out to the parking lot and Ade still had his arm around me but it didn't bother me anymore. Once we got to his car, Ade turned around and gave me one last kiss. 'I'll talk to you later babe' he said as he walked away.
I got into the car and headed home, realizing what just happened today. The doubts started coming in and by the time I got home, I figured it was just a show even though Ade did say to make us official. I decided to not say anything, as to not jinx it, but I did mention it to my mom and she was surprisingly supportive of the news. I went to bed, feeling happy that I was finally in a healthy relationship but worried this was just a dream.
A year has gone by and Ade and I have been through everything together, from our first Labor Day to getting sick and being diagnosed with Lupus. Through my tantrums (which Ade calls it and I just laugh) of trying to break up with him, Ade never left my side. He has even put up with my jealousy over his friends (who, though they can't go through a movie without commenting). Though we are in a long distance relationship and I want to see him every day, I know when we do see each other it has even more special meaning to me. If someone would have told me I would be celebrating a year with my future husband, I would have just laugh.
During one of our many deep conversations, I told Ade I knew he was the one I would marry. "How did you know babe?" he would ask. With Marcus I would dream he would be stopping my wedding and carry me off into the sunset. Ade, on the other hand, I imagine everything from our engagement to the wedding ceremony.
This writer dedicates this story to her Prince William (yes I came up with our official nicknames after we became official) and can honestly say she will live, according to all Disney movies, happily ever after.