When I first met Rudy I appreciated his kindness. He didn’t put on a show, a “look-at-me, I’m rough, tough, and I’ll tumble”. Nah, Rudy was gentleman, without attitude. A good guy. With squared shoulders, narrow hips, and a serious set of brown eyes.
Those were our innocent days. The days we were slowly learning about each other. What made us tick. What made us tock. And what didn’t. Slowly, we began to reveal who we were. How our lives were formed, the reasons we acted the way we did, or didn’t, and who played a part in the formation of who we’d become. Young adults.
Before we even knew the other existed, Rudy and I both learned the importance of being independent as young teens. I grasped rather quickly that I had to create my own life, in my own way, without help. From anyone. Even in the midst of a large family. After his father died, Rudy knew he had to leave his mom to figure out how he fit into the world beyond his family. So, he moved from Central America to the United States. Full of fear, combined with wonderment.
Some might consider that I married Rudy, and he attached himself to me, so that we both could fill a need. To find someone, anyone, to stand with. To be with. To make a family with. But that wasn’t the case. That’s not what was on our mind. Not at all. Simply put, Rudy and I met, we liked each other, and, so, we got married. There was no agenda behind our relationship. At all. We just were. Two young adults. Following our hearts.
And, so, here it is, thirty years later, still both very independent, with lots of ups-downs-and-all-arounds, still learning. Still listening to the ticks, the tocks, and the whatnots. Listening. Listening. Listening. Reaping the rewards of understanding.