Today is my one year anniversary with Carson. It’s a little embarrassing to admit that at 31 years of age it’s the first time a relationship of mine has ever reached the one-year mark. I’ve gotten close: 10 and 11 months, plus a guy I saw on and off for years, but I’ve never committed to one person for a full, consecutive year. Suffice to say I’m sort of excited. Speaking of embarrassed… Carson will probably die when he reads this. Get ready: sentiment is about to eat this post for breakfast.
Today is actually the anniversary of the day we met. I came to Mendocino last year on June 4 and met Carson at a bee club meeting on June 7. It was a sign that I was in the right place! We had a sort-of date that very same night which is why I feel justified calling today our official anniversary. He came to see me the next two days before going on a fishing trip that weekend. I asked him to send me a photo while he was gone, and this is what I got:
We all got a good chuckle out of that one.
The next several weeks were so sweet: he worked nearby and it was hot, so in the afternoons he’d come get me and we’d go for a swim at the lake. One day about two weeks in he called and asked what I was doing, came to pick me up, and took me to help him slaughter a young goat. It was the first time I’d participated in taking the life of something I was going to eat, and I held that goat’s head and stroked his face until he passed. It was powerful and sad and I cried a little. Carson treated me gently, then butchered the goat with precision and skill, and for the first time I thought, this could be something.
This is the first picture ever taken of us:
Then fire season started for him – a full two months later than this year. I keep telling him that if he’d started at this time last year, we wouldn’t have met. His being away was hard, but it let us take things slowly and get to know each other via emails, phone calls, and text messages, a modern twist on old fashioned courting. He writes such beautiful little texts – I called them “tiny love letters” in my July 10 journal entry. I save the best ones in a document and read them whenever I want my heart to swell.
I went to Seattle in September for a long visit and to gather all my belongings for the return trip: I was going to permanently relocate to Ukiah. It was one of the easiest decisions I’ve ever made. I fell in love with Mendocino as I fell in love with Carson, and today I love them both more than ever.