Sonodoro and I met when I believed love could happen in an instant. I was a girl with little experience who was well-satiated on a diet of romance and romantic comedy films. The Bachelor was only in its second season and love in an instant seemed possible.
Sonodoro and I were completely fascinated by our differences. He called me exotic, but growing up in rural Connecticut, I only saw myself as plain vanilla. I liked knowing he played tackle football on concrete; it was terribly masculine (a characteristic my college boyfriend lacked). We marveled at our differences… even celebrated them. Take for example how we we observed the Fourth of July: I grew up watching fireworks in a pasture with milking cows (and rest of the town) while he stayed inside because neighbors would discharge their firearms into the air.
Despite our attraction and my idea of love in an instant, I clung to a strong desire to abstain from sex before marriage. My desire not to have sex was muddy. I had sexy times before, but a large part of me wanted to reserve this pastime for the confines of marriage. This made sex with Sonodoro enigmatic. Hell, one of my besties from freshman year of college told me he stopped fornicating and because of that his virginity was reborn. He elaborated, “even though you can’t undo biology, you can become a virgin from a spiritual standpoint.” I loved his complete honesty (I also loved that he used fornicating in a sentence). But, I digress….
So, according to my friend’s logic, even though I had fornicated, I can reclaim a spiritual virginity, and essentially undo the sex.
THAT’S WHAT I WANTED TO DO!
I explained my NO SEX BEFORE MARRIAGE decree to Sonodoro. He wanted to make me happy, so he agreed to it. Every time he kissed me or touched my hand, I felt conflicted. We’d kiss and caress… I’d back away and we’d stop. Then, we’d start kissing again. The pattern continued several times before his soft sell (I’m aware of the pun) continued before I indulged. When we had sex, we both felt bad— he with his Catholic guilt for “pushing” and me for letting myself and God down. But, even with our guilt, it didn’t stop us from having sex. We just REALLY liked each other’s company. He didn’t force me; I let it happen. After the act, he would always apologize and kiss me sweetly; I thought it was nice he felt bad. After that, we’d go for weeks of not having sex. (Well, it might not have been weeks, but it sure felt like it.)
So, early in our relationship we were feeling bad about having sex and letting each other down. While on one of our dates to Sonodoro’s old neighborhood, he showed me the little wedding chapel where he and his first wife got married.
Ok…. So my fabulous new boyfriend who I thought is relatively untouched has an ex-wife!?
What do I do?
I guess I’ll keep dating him.
“But, when we go back home,” I told him, “You can’t tell Mom and Dad you were married.”
Yes, this hopeless romantic and love in the age of Instant Pudding girl was taking her new boyfriend to her baby sister’s wedding in Connecticut.