Two weeks into my New York adventure, I fell in love with a tall, classy, blue-eyed man.
At the time, I was applying to jobs all day and night, and in between refreshing Ed2010 and Mediabistro, I was scouring for affordable apartments that still made New York, NY the end of my address. Perhaps, I hadn’t gained some of that New York toughness or was creeped out by small empty spaces instead of the wide ones I was used to, but the thought of going all over the city, especially to Harlem and Morningside Heights, alone…was terrifying. Still being incredibly fresh to my new location and dying to have a home to call my own, I reached out to friends for advice. My friend A suggested I contact his friend – an assistant at the Lincoln Center.
And so, desperate for someone to apartment search with me (and well, protect me from the crazies I could encounter), I reached out to A’s friend, who gladly accepted the role as shopping buddy. Even though I had never met this man, I liked how friendly and helpful he was and willing to escort me, when at the time I was nothing but a stranger to him. I set up appointments for a Saturday afternoon and texted him the night before to let him know the times and locations – to this day, he still wants to make sure I’m safe whenever I go out alone and insists on walking me to my door or the subway when we’re out late together. And yes, this means he is still part of my life.
Ironically enough though, early on that Saturday morning, as I was drying my hair in my friend’s bathroom, he texted me to let me know that he was unexpectedly called into work and I should try to reschedule the appointments. Completely frustrated and now a little scared, I slammed down the hair dryer, plopped down on the side of the tub, and started crying. Here I was, a mere 14 days residing in my dream city and not only did I not have a job, but I didn’t have friends and I was now certain I’d be shot and killed in some slimy place I didn’t even know how to get to unless I Googled. After quite the hissy fit, I reached for my phone to call my mom, and saw that this man had texted me multiple times to ask me how he could be there for me and how he didn’t want me to be afraid. Humbled by his kindness, I thanked him for his time and suggested that maybe once I got my feet on the ground, we could go out to dinner. He responded with, “only if you text me as you go to these apartments, before, during, and after, so I know you’re okay.”
And so, with this gentleman in my pocket, I braved the streets and headed out to find my first New York place. In all honesty, it was a indeed creepy and when I exited the train at one of the locations, there was blood on the platform. Instead of exiting, I just turned on my heel and decided, surely, that was a sign to not go see the listing. I didn’t care if it was only $600 a month, utilities included. Though I saw some odd ones, eventually I found my cozy, tiny apartment and a week later, I was offered my current job…and well, here we are.
But to get to where I am now, I could have never done it without this man. When I had no one to depend on, no one to lay my trust in, no one who really even cared too awful much – he demanded to keep me safe. Even if it was just by guarding his Blackberry in case I didn’t text in an appropriate amount of minutes. Once all was settled, we did end up actually meeting when he invited me to a show, free of charge, at the Lincoln Center. An Opera, to be exact.
When I laid eyes on him, on the second floor mezzanine, in a black suit -I knew he would be someone I’d love. His smile, so endearing, so sincere, so enticing, caught my attention even in the crowd of strangers And as he casually sipped his champagne and made small talk with party guests, I slowly walked up to him, and he simply turned his head, locked eyes with me, and said: “You must be Lindsay. You’re as beautiful as A said you were.” Blushing to the color of my wine, I swore I almost stumbled in my three-inch heels.
A few nights later, we met in Union Square at a Thai restaurant we now call “our place.” He brought an expensive bottle of prosecco to celebrate my new job and new home, but the waitress (and the manager) refused to let us drink it with our food unless we forked up $20. We in return, refused, and discussed current events, popular culture, North Carolina, and because I’m “me” and he’s “him” – our conversation also turned to love. Watching him attempt to eloquently eat his noodles with chopsticks and bear his heart to me, with all of its many cuts and rips, I knew I had just found one of things I came to New York in search of. That man, who against all odds, through any circumstances, or in your worse and best of moments – will love you unconditionally. And yet, will also always be honest to a default and let you indulge in your silly-girl-freak-out moments (that perhaps aren’t that silly, after all). That man, who you can be yourself with, who you can come-as-you-are to, and even drink fancy wine out of plastic cups in the park instead of paying for someone else to uncork the bottle for you.
I had in fact found the required accessory to make any fabulous New York outfit and life complete: my gay husband. Or as I lovingly (and sincerely) call him, Mr. Hubby.
Now, I knew from the get-go that Mr. Hubby was not interested in me as a sexual creature (although he does admire my lovely lady lumps when they’re pushed up or on display), but it didn’t stop me from falling for him. You see, there is something unique in a hubby/wifey relationship – it is mutually understood that if we weren’t attracted to the same tall, dark stranger, we’d probably be literally married by now. In fact, we’d probably be bunking in Brooklyn with a completely gorgeous art-deco kitchen, and I’d walk around in pearls, as he smokes a cigar and drinks brandy in a parlor room, listening to Glee’s soundtrack and randomly bursting into song and dance. We’d also own a few recording and publishing companies, and be the smokin’ powerhouse couple that everyone is jealous of.
He easily and swiftly became and remains, my very best New York friend. We have the best kind of friendship that’s open, non-judgemental, and welcomes each and every little flaw. We’ve gone dancing and boozing at bars with 75-year-old bartenders, cuddled in the same bed when the commute seemed like too much, and hosted a BYOP party (Bring Your Own Pumpkin), as I wore an apron and he cared my pumpkin for me. He tells me when a dress isn’t flattering and also when I look, as he says, “damn sexy“, and I’m there to encourage pinstripe suits and the bottom he has that would charm the pants off anyone. And of course, we’ve spent many of lunch breaks over coffee or Greek food, both tearing up over a man who played a little too rough with our hearts, while the other told us not only what we wanted to hear, but what we needed to hear. If I’m honest, he has a Mr. Possibility of sorts (though I’d prefer to call him Mr. Idiotic), who continuously makes a mess of Mr. Hubby’s emotions, and yet, the connection there is impossible to ignore. Of course, I can relate, but I can’t say I’m the biggest fan of Mr. Idiotic. I do, however believe one day, he’ll wake up and see what he’s missing in Mr. Hubby.
Because if anyone knows how special, how irreplaceable Mr. Hubby is, it’s me. He, like me, is an artist – only he has the unbelievable quality of not only making something, but demonstrating beauty in the creation. He sees and presents the brilliance of emotion through movement, through words, through friendship, through his voice, and of course, his contagious smile. Though he can’t always see what is ahead of him, I’m as sure of his success and his happiness, as I am of mine. His dreams are only outnumbered by his friends, all of which can’t help but adore him. I feel blessed to be picked as the Mrs. – yet I think fate had a little hand in the serendipitous meeting.
I’m still not convinced that when I meet or go out with Mr. Right, I’ll just know he’s my match, but when that does happen, I hope he knows that I’ve already been married for some time now, and he has some pretty incredible shoes to fill. He has to live up to the man who had me at hello.