On being taken care of

I’ve been really sick recently. (I’m not even willing to admit how much or how isolated it makes me feel from “normal”– whatever the fuck that is. Perhaps, a better word would be normalcy.) Anyway, this led to me having to cancel a first date with a gentleman I met just earlier this week, at Starbucks of all places. When given this information, he texted the following response:

Well…get some rest. Then, you can come over tonight and I can take care of you. I can make you dinner and we can just chill. Come over around 630. Two options for dinner. Chicken on the grill, wild rice and broccolini. Or garlic chicken with Alfredo sauce over penne with French bread that we dip into olive oil as appetizer. Which one?

I was so dumbfounded by the whole thing, I didn’t even know how to respond. It brought me to tears. The only word I could get to my lips was: damn.

How fucked up is it that I have become so accustomed to not expecting a man to do … well, anything anymore that I don’t know how to handle it when they do? (Jesus. That may be the saddest thing I ever wrote.)

To make a long story short, I accepted the invite to dinner and that pasta and french bread would be the best bet because carbs heal all wounds. When I went over for dinner, I walked into this:

I need you to understand that in 39 years of life no one has ever made me a homemade dinner, set up an appetizer with a lovely, aged bottle of wine, poured into crystal and served it by candlelight. As I was taking this picture, he is to my left finishing his culinary orchestrating. He plates the meal directly from the stove top, wiping the edges of the plate he is about to present. He makes one stop before pulling out my chair at the table to roll up fresh basil leaves and garnish the pasta in spirals.

The whole scene was foreign and felt like an out of body experience, but also what I always thought it might be feel like to be … home.

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