on love and house-building

love gathers at a glance by Lisa Kaser on etsy

love gathers at a glance by Lisa Kaser on etsy

I wrote this three years ago. . . and still feel it.

It has been eleven years since the professor and I decided, for better or for worse, to be in each other's lives. He had a home and a routine with two teenagers and I was young and hot and single and moved in around the corner. (Okay. . . I was young and single.) On paper, it wasn't a good idea. I mean, teenagers? He's older, there were complications, but what do you do when love hits you uncompromisingly straight in the heart? We shared many meals, discussed the complications, and acknowledged that we were to be together.

Seven years later, we hired an architect to help us build an eco-smart house. Three years of negotiating and creating and hiring and budgeting and overseeing and a year of nestling bring us to today.

We didn't get married; we built a house together.

We decided years ago that today would be our anniversary. I kind of forgot, or thought that it would pass inconsequentially like the others, but no: we need to celebrate. Our plan: to have a picnic by the river, and then maybe go weed our community garden patch. I know: so hippie nouveau. And I love it.

There comes a point in one's life where one realizes: I do not live in an attic apartment on the Seine. I will not be sampling fresh baguette and wearing fancy shoes while sipping local wine at a patio bistro in a haze of light smoke and rolled "r"s. I live in the boreal forest. Our river is lined with washed-up deadfall from last year's flood, our neighbours speak in the remains of heavy slavic accents and local bad grammar, and at the longest day of the year, it's battle weed vs. veggie.

Love. you never really know when it's going to show up. And then you wake up one day and realize that you have survived the past eleven years of holidays and daily grinds and sickness and health, and think, yeah. We made this.

(originally published on June 21, 2012, at my now defunct former space borealtrim.com)