Once upon a time, a girl met a boy. They liked each other.
One day he called her and asked if she wanted to go to play miniature golf with some friends. She did. The next weekend he asked her if she wanted to go out to eat. She did. They soon spent nearly all of their non-working time together. She knew she loved him, but had had many bad experiences. She kept it to herself.
Months went by and instead of letting herself fully love the boy, she started to build a wall. You see, this girl was very good at building walls around her heart. She didn't like to be hurt and had been so many times in the past. Some times we don't see the good things that surround us, and she was fully guilty of this. She did not see how good he was for her, how good they were together.
They spoke of marriage. And one day shopped for a ring. She loved that. Never before had anyone wanted to spend the rest of their life with her and it started to make her feel like that wall might not be necessary. But it was hard to break down a wall like she had built.
The day he asked her to marry him, she was very happy. She was sitting on the floor in his room, alphabetizing his cds. (They were a mess, and she liked things to have order.) It was a sweet moment.
She was going to go on vacation with her family. She would be gone for three weeks. He was worried. Three weeks is a long time and he had had a relationship go sour when it became a long distance thing. She was sure it would be fine. But a few days before she left, she became an emotional wreck. She became upset with him, and even through the ring back at him. She immediately regretted it. She regretted that hurt that she could see in his eyes, and the breaking she felt in her own heart. But what is done is done and she could not take it back. They stayed together threw this, no longer as an engaged couple, although she still said they were. She knew that she had messed it all up too badly. He took the ring and hid it away.
During the vacation she began to feel ill. Everything made her nauseous and she wanted to sleep all of the time. When they got home, it occurred to her that she had missed her period. She took a pregnancy test and it was positive. She told him on the phone, but they did not see each other until much later on in the pregnancy.
She grew cold towards him, cutting out any feelings that she had had. She thought only of the bad things because it made it all so much easier to deal with. She knew she had brought it all upon herself. She knew that she had hurt him more than she could ever imagine. And she continued to hurt him, even though she didn't want to.
The day the baby was born, the wall broke. She hadn't allowed him to be at the birth, thinking it would be too hard for her. Instead she created more regret to carry around in her heart. She had her mother call him to tell him that he had a beautiful baby girl. When he came in the room, she melted. She knew she had been wrong and stupid. She just hoped it was not too late to recreate the family that she should have had.
Over the weeks and months the boy and girl, now a mother and father, spent time together with their child. The child bringing them back into the same room. The child giving them purpose together. And slowly, very slowly, the hurt began to heal.
When that baby was very nearly two years old, they decided it was time to marry. They chose to cement their relationship. They knew it would never be easy, they knew that this was simply a step on the path they needed to take.
Together they decided that he would join the military.
More time went by and they added another child.
One day, they got the call they dreaded, but knew would come. He would be mobilized. They would be separated for a very long time and only could hope that their relationship was strong enough to withstand the time apart. When he had been gone for a certain amount of time, he was able to come home to visit. This happened to fall during the time that they would celebrate the sixth anniversary of marriage, and the ninth year since they had met.
All of this time had passed and he still kept the ring, the token of their love, in a box. The hurt had run so deep that even the many years that have passed have not fully healed it. He decided that it was finally time to give the ring back to her. She felt that it symbolized all that they have been through, and all that they will be through. And she can't wait for the rest of their lives to begin.