It’s a leap of faith. He asks you to follow him to a new city, and you say yes. You’re moving in together, but it doesn’t feel like a sin. Just the opposite, in fact. Like puzzle pieces clicking into place.
It’s a jumble of hand-me-down furniture and college dorm cast-offs. The big blue recliner. The IKEA drawers that don’t align quite right. The creaky bed, with two comforters because someone hogs his blanket in the night. He springs for a new sofa though, big and comfortable. And a new flat-screen TV too.
It’s every bit as much yours as it is his, even though your name isn’t on the deed. You fill a closet with your clothes. You buy a piano as a graduation present to yourself and then play it (occasionally) in the spare room. You vacuum, wash dishes, and do laundry. You help decide where the paintings and souvenirs should be displayed.
It’s that first night with a new puppy, who is so soft and adorable and whimpering. Just this once, you sleep on the floor next to his crate. You both barely get any rest at all, but you both feel better anyway.
It’s watching Twilight with girlfriends from work. Cooking together and setting off the smoke alarm. Hosting four other couples for dinner, everyone cheerfully crammed into the living room, playing charades and euchre. Dog-sitting for neighbors. Watching deer wander through the backyard, their ears pricking at the sound of your dog’s bark.
It’s where you finish writing your first novel, just before the stroke of midnight on New Year’s Eve.
It’s where you finish your second novel, too, the one that gets you an agent.
It’s where you dream and work and despair and push through.
It’s where you realize that you’re already living the life you want. Now you just have to enjoy it.