I spent most of the week creating and perfecting Shanna and Ronnie's wedding gift. When it was done, it was so beautiful it made me cry. I wanted to keep it. Even Joyce asked if we could keep it. I had to wrap it as soon as it was done just so I wouldn't look at it anymore. Out of sight, out of mind.
Thursday night, I cheered loudly with my coworkers as my director presented our case study to a theater packed with hundreds of people. They "ooo'ed" and "aaahh'ed" as she clicked through the slides detailing a Facebook ad campaign that increased fans on one of our client's Facebook page by 37,000 percent. That's not a typo. I geeked out. I got goosebumps as she showed the slide with the campaign results, even though I'd created the presentation. Further proof that I'm a huge nerd.
The presentation ended just in time for me to hightail it to my double header kickball games. Every week, I looked forward to kickball day. All of my best friends were on my team, and it was a great excuse for all of us to get together and drink beer and take out any frustration on that poor, red ball. But that night, I was more excited than frustrated. Cayden would be landing in less than 24 hours. I couldn't keep the smile off my face.
Butterflies started to invade my stomach on my way home from post-game drinks at Barley House. It was after midnight and I knew Cayden would be waking up any minute to head to the airport and start his 10-hour journey to me. The next day, I'd be driving home with Cayden, where I could then throw him onto my bed and cuddle the shit out of him.
My phone rang and interrupted my zoned-out daydream as I coasted down the highway. It was Cayden. I nearly ran my car into a row of orange construction cones in a fit of excitement.
"Good morning, baby!" I said in my most chipper voice. No one likes to hear chipper voices before 10 am, but I just loved to annoy him.
"Hey girlfriend," he said with his rough morning voice. "How was the presentation? How were the kickball games?"
"Amazing. And we lost one and tied one," I said. "But who cares, I get to see you so soon!!"
"Yeah, about that..." he said.
My heart sank. My stomach dropped right along with it. My smile faded just as fast as it had spread.
"Please don't say it," I said. "Don't tell me there's something wrong with your flights."
"Well, I just woke up and saw an email from United that said my flight from London is delayed, which means I'll miss my connection," he said, his voice hesitant. "My new itinerary says I don't land in DFW until 8:30 pm."
Tears sprang to my eyes.
"No... No..." I said, shaking my head even though I knew he couldn't see me. "The rehearsal dinner is downtown at 7:30. I can't go alone. And even if I did go alone, I'd have to leave as soon as I got there to go pick you up. I can't not go. I missed the bachelorette party. I missed the dinner and drinks tonight. And I'm missing the rehearsal in the morning. This can't be happening."
"I know, baby. After I read that, I was so afraid to call you because I knew you'd be upset," he said. "I hate to upset you, especially when it's not something I can control."
Everyone was going to have a date at that rehearsal dinner. I was going to be the loner in the corner, stuffing my face with food and chugging free margaritas. I knew it wasn't Cayden's fault, so I tried not to let him hear me cry.
"Why does something always go wrong?" I asked. "It's 2011 for fuck's sake. Why don't we have teleportation or flying cars yet?"
I wiped my tears but they chased each other, one after the other. I couldn't keep up.
"I'll figure something out," he said, trying to reassure me. "Just go home and go to bed and I'll call you as soon as I know something. I'm going to head to the airport now anyway and see what I can do."
There was nothing more frustrating than flight delays and cancelations. There's no one you can complain to. No one who can just make the plane show up out of thin air. No one who will really care about your story about why you so desperately need to be on that flight.
Joyce saw my tear-streaked face as I walked through the living room and into my room.
"What is it?" she asked. "Is it his flight?"
"Yes. It's a disaster," I said from behind my closed bedroom door. "His flight from London is delayed and he's going to miss his connection and now he's not getting in until after 8 pm which means I have to miss the rehearsal dinner and completely own up to being the world's shittiest bridesmaid. Or I could go without him and be the only single loser there."
Once again, I knew I was being dramatic, but I just wanted to vent. It wasn't fair. If we could just live in the same damn city we wouldn't have to put up with half the bullshit we step in.
"I'm sorry ...you could take Joey?"
It takes a true friend to offer up her boyfriend to tag along as your date to your best friends wedding.