When he awkwardly excused himself to use the restroom after dinner, I looked around and noticed that the bartender was pouring two glasses of Champagne with strawberries, but the restaurant was relatively empty.
I wondered whom the glasses were for, and then it came together like a Nancy Drew mystery. I was not prepared for this life event to occur, but as I watched him slide onto his knee, tears in his eyes, ring in a small blue box, I remembered something my father had told me when I was in my 20s: “Don’t get married until you’re 30.
The reprecussions of that can/ and did have a significant impact on my self-confidence. Hopefully, I'm not the only one who feels like this or I'll feel really weird putting this out.
Idiosyncrasies that I used to find endearing, like reading a profile about a “reformed bad boy” were no longer tolerable — whereas a few years prior, if I had dated someone who would tend to disappear for a few days and then reemerge at 2 a.m., I’d welcome them back with an open heart. I didn’t need someone to make my life more complicated. I was no longer afraid to be alone, a notion that I don’t know if I ever would have come to if I had not gotten sick.My heart transplant scar made me a warrior, my boyfriend told me at the time. If anything, I sometimes had to be careful that guys didn't want to date me just because they were in awe of what I'd been through.It was important to me to tell them what happened, to help them understand why I tried to squeeze as much as I could into each day.Add a heart transplant and prosthetic leg into the mix, and things can get especially interesting.As a 16-year-old high school senior, I had a sudden, massive heart attack with no prior health problems and wasn't expected to live through the night.My boyfriend was wearing a suit, on a Sunday, and had been acting a little jittery during dinner. You don’t know who you are until then.” I was 30 when he proposed, so wasn’t this the time?I said yes, unsure if that was my final answer, but too afraid to say no. I know that up until that day, I had always thought that the great love of my life would propose to me, and it would be fairy tale-like. The engagement and the relationship pretty much crashed and burned shortly thereafter, with cracks in the facade becoming craters as we moved through the motions of thinking about a wedding.For six months, we tried therapy, constantly talking about our issues until one day, I was just tired of talking. Six months after our last interaction, I was diagnosed with breast cancer.The year and half following my diagnosis, there was no time for dating — only time for healing.At first, some guys thought the heart transplant made me fragile.Once I assured them that I wasn't going to die in five years, I found that if I wasn't awkward about it, neither were they.