You’re going to be my wife one day, you know that?” Adam asked. A spark that felt like lightning ran down my back.
Was this a proposal?
I breathed in, out, in, out, in, out, trying to calm myself down just in case it was a proposal. Shit! What if he was proposing? No, he didn’t seem nervous or fidgety. Aren’t guys usually nervous when they propose? It wasn’t a proposal. He wasn’t down on one knee—but he was slouched over. I kept my eyes wide, in case his hands went to his pockets.
Adam and I were ringing in the New Year in a nightclub in Washington, D.C., our favorite city despite the fact that the New York area had held us hostage for the past four years. Adam was a lawyer and had passed the bar across the Hudson River in New Jersey, so he couldn’t move unless he studied for the bar exam again—and we weren’t going through that again. At least right now. Plus, I had finally settled into my job as an entertainment producer at a television network in New York City, getting hard-to-come-by celebrity interviews and breaking news on stories that mattered—like Justin Bieber’s new haircut and Chris Brown’s latest girlfriend. The stories of legend.
So when I mentioned spending the New Year in D.C., he didn’t blink. I even convinced our best friends to book rooms in the same hotel just footsteps away from Georgetown University where he went to law school. It would be nostalgic for him and a nice getaway for us.
By 11:53 p.m., Adam and I were way past tipsy.
“Yeah?” I slithered. A grin unable to contain itself appeared on my face.
“Yes!” he said, finally finding his balance and standing up straight. “We’re going to get married, and you’re going to be my wife. I love you!”
Okay. He was standing up, so this was definitely not a proposal. It’s not a proposal. I found my breath again. My heart, which was beating inside my chest so hard that I could hear it in my ears, suddenly shrank back to normal. This was not a proposal.
It was more like a promise, and I’d take that. If I couldn’t get a proposal on New Year’s Eve, I’d take a promise.
“I love you, too, Adam,” I said slowly, quietly, realizing the significance of this pseudo-proposal.
“10!…9!…8!…7!…6!…5!…4!…3!…2!…1! Happy New Yearrrrrr!” the DJ proclaimed.
Adam planted a sloppy kiss on the space next to my mouth. I caught his wet champagne kiss, moving my head slightly so our lips actually met, and closed my eyes, letting the feeling of love wash over me.
I wondered if Adam would remember his marital declaration in the soberness of the morning.
I couldn’t wait to tell my sister.
“So what does that mean?” my older sister, Jasmine, asked.
I had just finished telling her the New Year’s Eve pseudo-proposal story in great detail, hoping she could decode just what Adam had meant, if he meant anything at all by it.
And Jazz should know. She had successfully gotten her boyfriend of three years to propose to her. Clearly she was an expert and I needed expert advice.
“I honestly don’t know. We have talked about marriage before, but it was always in general terms like, ‘Yes, I see myself getting married and having two kids.’ But never, ‘I see myself marrying you.’”
“Well, then this is good. This is good,” Jasmine said with the delivery of a stock market analyst. “Wait and see if he brings it back up again. Give him a good three months. If he doesn’t, then bring it up. See where his head’s at. I mean, honestly, Joi, it’s not like you’re getting any younger. You guys have been together for as long as Jimmy and I have been together and we’re married with one on the way.”
“Yes, I am highly aware of that.”
“I’m just saying, you can’t be afraid to have the conversation.”
“Who said I was afraid?”
“All right, lover girl,” Jasmine conceded. “Just keep me posted.”
“I will. Adam isn’t the type to say something and not mean it. He’s always been a man of his word…Hell, at this point, I just hope he remembers his word.”
“Well, you know what they say, you tell the truth when you’re drunk. I wouldn’t worry about it.”
“You’re right. You’re right. Okay. Thanks, sissy. I’ll talk to you tomorrow.”