Six months ago I did something I had not done before. As Jay was pulling out of the driveway in the morning for the last time, I ran out from the kitchen to the front porch calling his name. When he turned around to look to see what I wanted, I yelled blowing him a kiss "I love you!"
When I think back to the twenty-six year old who met Jay, I literally feel like I was in pieces and very much needing to be put back together again. I had just moved back to Nashville a couple years earlier after moving from city to city and job to job and I was anxious and insecure. I am sure in many ways I was not that different from many twenty-something year olds.
But Junebug had always felt different. Losing my dad was definitely the seed but the defining moment for feeling so weird happened in 7th grade. I developed school phobia. I remember this feeling that everyone was growing up so fast and I was not ready to give up my impressive (really it was) sticker collection.
I was much more content staying home from school and being with our housekeeper, Mary Katherine. I would snuggle with her on the couch watching Price is Right and How the World Turns. I promised Mary Katherine that one day we would go to California and I would help her get on the Price is Right because she seemed to guess the correct price every time. "Come on down, Mary Katherine" I knew we would hear Bob Barker say one day and then we would win Mary Katherine a better life she deserved.
A couple years later, I would be ready to give up my sticker collection and while I still preferred the comfortable Mary Katherine, it was harder to miss school. I now was at an all-girls high school where my zip code and leaving school long after everyone else on my mom's way home from work seem to ingrain this idea into my head that I was different. Differences aside (as where they should always be), it was a good place for me where my friendships and the teachers who could overlook that I was out of uniform or late for class or talking too much, became the glue that held my pieces loosely together.
When I met Jay, he was the Daddy of all glues and I think the magic was in the familiar broken pieces we saw in one another. I have thought a lot about my blog the other day and the reflected parts of myself that had been lost to my own eyes that Jay showed me. And as I overturned each and every broken piece within me to show Jay and felt loved and understood, it makes sense, Junebug, why Jay would be the one you would commit to in sickness and in health. And why quickly you would change and grow into the woman who today will find her own way in one piece even if we have to write our way through it.
"I love you!" I yelled it from my front porch and I would yell it from the roof tops again and again and again while blowing Jay a million kisses.
The below song is "All My Days" by Alexi Murdoch who Jay and I saw at 3rd and Lindslay.