What seemed like the longest that I had ever been apart from Ricky, in reality, wasn’t all that long. I mean, come one, I thought—it was only one week apart, and I knew that I could handle the distance. But what was bugging me more than anything, was not knowing what was wrong, and why Ricky was so unhappy. Two days later, my phone rang. It was Ricky. Now keep in mind that I was slightly bothered why he didn’t even call to confirm that he had arrived safely, but I knew that acting angry and bitter for that, could push Ricky even further away from me emotionally, and I definitely didn’t want that to happen.
“Hello?” I said.
“Hi Love. I’m sorry for not calling sooner.” Ricky replied.
I said, “Thanks. It’s O.K., I mean, I worried for your safety, but anyway, I’m glad that you’re calling now. How are you?”
Ricky responded, “I feel a lot better. I think that I just needed to relax a bit. I felt a bit overwhelmed with some things. And I suppose I really hadn’t been sharing everything with you, and I think that has to change if we’re going to continue, and even go forward together.”
I responded, “I couldn’t agree more. Ricky, I really miss you. I want you to feel that you can tell me anything… always. You know, I tell you everything, and I feel bad if I was the cause of some unhappiness to you. It breaks my heart. I mean, Ricky, if you only knew how much I love and adore you…”
Ricky said, “Alana, look, I’m back, okay, and I didn’t actually go away to Paris. But I need to see you in person, so we can talk. This shouldn’t be said over the phone.”
I felt completely bewildered and dumbfounded. How could he lie to me? And for what?
I responded, “What? Really? You’ve been in town this whole time? I don’t understand… I feel so confused. Yes, yes! Let’s go out and talk.”
I felt the fire rush to my head, and at the very same time as I was in complete shock that he had lied to me, I was also saddened why he would do such a thing. He used to melt my heart, but not it felt as if he were melting it in a different way.
“Text me when you arrive there.” Ricky insisted.
Oddly enough, Ricky didn’t want to pick me up, but instead he wanted to meet me in the very same place that we had gone the first day that we had met—the Rubin Museum of Art. All I could think was, what an odd time for Ricky to take me to a place that we shared such a beautiful moment together when he was probably going to either break up with me or confess and explain why he had been so dishonest. But I didn’t care at this point, and I wanted to know what the hell was going on and through his mind.
I pulled up to where I parked the last time that we were at the Rubin Museum, and I saw that Ricky’s car was already parked, but there was no sign of him, and it also seemed a bit strange, because the last time when Ricky and I came to the Museum, it was packed with people, and it seemed somewhat deserted this time. So, I assumed that he went inside and was waiting for me. I felt so nervous of what to expect, and as I was trying to text Ricky to let him know that I had arrived, my purse fell to the ground, along with everything that was in it fell beside it. I threw everything back inside of my purse, texted Ricky, and started walking toward the elevator.
Making my way passed the front desk that happened to have been empty, I noticed that I was one of the only people walking around. Ricky didn’t respond to my text or perhaps I just had poor reception, I don’t know. I figured that Ricky was most likely waiting where we had sat together the last time—on the patio.
I suddenly noticed by my feet that there were red rose petals lying on the floor one after the next, and they seem to continue on a path toward the patio, only in more substantial amounts as I got closer.
There he was, outside, waiting in the patio area, right next to a beautifully set table for two by candlelight, beautiful red roses, and music playing in the background, that I can only assume was from an album that I had made for him around the time when we first met. He looked beautiful and I nearly fell in love with him all over again. But I still couldn’t stop thinking about why he lied to me.
He was standing by his chair. We slowly met half way, never once removing our eyes from one another. I felt like a magnet forced into his arms, which I had missed, longed for, and feared that wouldn’t embrace me again in such a way. All I could think at that very moment was, “Heaven.”
“Let’s sit down.” he said softly.
“This is beautiful, Ricky, wow, you went through so much trouble.” I said with great gratitude.
“Alana, I’m sorry. I… I…”
All I was thinking is “My God, boy, spit it out! You’re killing me!”
Ricky continued, “I wanted to apologize first and foremost for being dishonest. I had never lied to you before, but you kept on questioning me and what I was doing, and I needed to get some things done without any distraction. So for that, I hope that you can forgive me.”
My eyes were watering and I was basically just trying to keep it together.
“Thank you for saying that Ricky.” I replied. “I felt like you were about to break up with me.”
“No, my love.” Ricky replied. “I wanted to be with you here today to tell you that, I love you… And that I want to spend the rest of my life with you… You are the epitome of everything that I’ve ever wanted in another soul, another human being, and you’re the most giving and loving woman that I have ever known. Before you, Alana, I had never known a woman to be as selfless since I saw my own mother in her hardest times, and I watched her give, give, and give, even to the point that she became ill. You Alana, have that same type of warmth and selflessness within you, and I want to be the man that will give you everything in life, everything in my power, including all of me, to make you happy… if you’ll be willing to have me. Alana, I want us to contribute to society—as a team. I want us to be better people, to make each other into better people, to help each other grow, to help those in need and to always be there for each other through it all. You and I make an amazing team together, and you know how important it is for me to give back. And although individually, we are whole, we are not complete without each other.”
He continued… “Alana, will you be that person for me? The person that I met, the one that I fell in love with right here… Will you give back to society? Will you spend your life with me and be my teammate and help people in need, and to do so with your big, beautiful heart? I want our journey to be one. With you in my life, I can conquer all, and we can do so much more than if we were to be apart. You’re the one… the only one that I’ve ever longed for.”
He dropped down on one knee, looking straight into my eyes.
“Alana… My love, my best friend, will you marry me?”