I'm a writer. (That in itself should be enough for you to know that I'm a little bit cracked. But only a little.) As a writer, one of the scariest things I face is sending out my manuscript. Sure there's a chance someone will acquire it, but there is an even greater chance I'll get a rejection.
Rejection hurts. A lot.
I've been thinking about pain as I get ready to send out my latest manuscript, and this made me think about my hubby. Not that he is a pain, or that he causes pain, but because I caused him pain. A lot. It happened a long time ago, so don't look at me like that. Sheesh. This is how it went...
We met two weeks before I graduated from high school. I was young. I was a teenager. He was five years older. He was ready to get married. I wasn't. We fell in love. He proposed. I freaked out and said no. Did I mention I was young? Did I mention I was a teenager? Did I mention we were in love?
See? Pain. Poor guy. Poor me. I can only imagine the courage it took for him to get down on one knee and ask me. You can only imagine the terror that swept through my eighteen-year-old body as I thought about saying yes. Hence the no. But the real story is in the next nine months.
He proposed every other day for nine months straight. I told him no every other day for nine months straight. But he kept asking. I am so very glad he did, because it wasn't that I didn't love him, or that his offer wasn't good, or that I didn't want to marry him, it just wasn't the right time--yet. I needed to grow up a bit. So he kept asking--every other day--and I kept rejecting--every other day--until I accidentally said yes.
Yes, you read that right. We got engaged on accident. It happened over curly fries at the local Hardees. He looked up between bites and said, in the saddest voice imaginable, "Are you ever going to marry me?"
I dipped my fry in sauce and said, without thinking, "Well, yeah."
He stared at me with the most adorable goofy, shocked, I-must-be-dreaming expression, and then I froze with a curly fry halfway to my mouth and thought, What have I just done?
He said, "Really?"
I thought about it and realized (much to my own shock and surprise)that, yes, really. So I told him.
I had to take the keys away from him and drive us to my home. Friends just don't let friends drive in a love/success induced stupor.
But the whole point to this long and painful story is, he didn't give up. Last night I asked him why, and he said, "I knew I wanted to be with you, and if I kept asking one day you'd say yes."
Have you ever heard a more romantic thing?
So, in the tradition of my nine months of no, I will submit my novel, and submit my novel until someone says yes, because I know what I want. And if I keep asking, one day someone will say, "YES!"
What about you? What takes courage in your life?