JULY 27th, 2020.
Today marks the first day of my honeymoon. As I turn onto my left side, I see my best friend sleeping peacefully. Gently I push away the covers and step onto the floor, hoping that it will not creak. Not everyone is an early riser like me, and that is OK. I throw the blue satin robe from the armchair over my shoulders, grab my diaries and a pen, and then promptly sneak out onto the balcony overlooking the ocean.
The sun has not come out yet, but you can already see the orange hue poking out from behind the horizon. The honeymoon suite is located in a wooden cottage, which sits only a few feet away from a private beach. We have a bungalow all to ourselves. The abundance of trees and flowers make it seem like your cottage is the only one on the island. In truth, there are dozens in this resort only.
I run my hands over the blue journal and then bring my nose closer to the cover to breathe in the smell of the leather cover.
“One can never have too many journals,” I said to my sister when she asked me what I wanted for my last birthday.
When Frank proposed only a couple of days later, I decided to use that journal my sister got me to commemorate my married life.
“It would be a cool thing to show the kids decades down the road. There would be so many words of wisdom found among those pages. Great memories filled with joy and laughter, too,” I mused to myself back then.
I lay the notebook on the coffee table and open it up. The first page is already filled with drawings of hearts. “Married Life Journal” is written diagonally in big, bold letters. My and Frank’s name is seen below it. After I pull off the cap of my fountain pen, on page number two, I write today’s date as neatly as I can.
“I wonder how long I will be able to keep this up,” I wonder and smirk to myself.
Before I write anything else, I turn around and look into the room through the glass door.
“Still asleep,” I sigh.
It is only fitting that I look back on the four-year-long relationship with Frank before I am fully ready to embark on the journey of the new chapter of my life. Placing the new journal to the side, I open the one I used over the past few years. Like the ‘Married’ one, this journal has a dedicated first page. “The One,” it says. I roll my eyes a little, remembering that every time I met a guy I liked, I would start a new journal dedicated to them and our relationship. Needless to say, those prior journals were never fully filled, always ending prematurely. But this time, every page of that notebook was scribbled on. Quite a few pages were added loosely to the end.
APRIL 15th, 2016.
I’m in love. Zoey and I went clubbing last night. We met these two cute guys who looked like they were straight out of a Telenovela. Tall, tanned, dark hair, dark eyes. They were both handsome, well-dressed, and they seemed to know how to treat a lady. The four of us danced the night away, laughing and talking. The one I spent the most time with said he would call the next day, and today I woke up to my phone ringing.
“Hey, this is Frank,” said the man on the other end of the phone line. “From last night,” he added.
“How are you, beautiful?” he asked.
“So, he doesn’t even remember my name,” I thought at first and shook my head with disappointment. While I was offended, of course, it also made me feel better that I didn’t remember which one of them was Frank and which was Ben. “A little hungover,” I answered.
“Did you and Zoey get home alright last night?” Frank asked.
“Oh, so he’s calling for Zoe,” I thought to myself and grimaced a little. “Yea, we made it back all OK,” I replied coldly.
“I’m glad to hear it,” Frank said.
For a moment, there was nothing but silence on the line, and I was about to hang up.
“Would you like to go on a date next weekend, Lily?” he asked, and my heart skipped a beat. “So he was calling for ME, and he DID remember my name,” I thought to myself and smiled. “Sure. Let’s do that,” I replied and disconnected the call before doing a happy dance.
JUNE 30th, 2016.
OK, I know I said it before, but it really is true now - I do love him. We had a fabulous day today. First, we went to the beach and flew kites. Then, we went to the zoo and fed elephants. In the evening we cooked dinner together.
OCTOBER 2nd, 2016.
With the holiday season around the corner, I thought it would be a good idea for Frank and me to meet each other’s families. I was a little worried about bringing it up to him, but Frank loved the idea.
OCTOBER 15th, 2016.
I met Frank’s mom. She invited us over for dinner. We ate, we talked, we browsed through photos of Frank as a kid. His mom and I made plans to go shopping together. Maybe we will get mani-pedis, too. Just the two of us. She was absolutely wonderful.
OCTOBER 27th, 2016.
I hate my mother. Frank was nothing but nice to her last night, and in turn, she acted like a bitch towards him. Kept asking him difficult questions and making snide comments. Afterward, she told me he was no good for me and that I should break up with him.
DECEMBER 13th, 2019.
Frank proposed to me tonight. I said, ‘Yes!’ Of course. This day could not come fast enough. I called my mother to share the great news, but she told me I did not have her blessing.
JULY 26th, 2020.
Today is the day I get married to my best friend. To the love of my life. To my intimate partner. I cannot wait to be called Mrs. Higgs.
As I read the final words from the old Journal, Zoey comes out onto the balcony.
“You been up long?” she asks and yawns.
“Just a few minutes,” I tell her and pull the new journal closer.
Today is the first day of what was supposed to be my honeymoon. Yesterday, no more than half an hour before I was scheduled to say I do, I went for a walk to clear my head and warm my feet that were slightly getting cold. Behind one of the oak trees, I saw my mother, who had previously refused to attend the wedding. As I walked closer to her, I realized that she was not there for me and that she was not alone. Glued to her lips was the mouth of the man, I thought I would marry that day.
“Let’s go grab breakfast,” I say to Zoey as I close the notebooks and push them away.
“Let’s,” she says with a smile and grabs my arm.