Cayden was totally onboard with the new choice in venue, as were all of my friends and family members. No one wanted to say it, but they were all dreading the June heat as much as I was. Which is funny, because anytime I brought it up, they'd say, "No one will even notice!" Anything to keep the bride happy, I guess.
Topher probably had the best response when I described the Londoner to him:
"Oh, good. It will be like I sat on a plane for 9 hours and ended up in the same place I took off."
I'm sure the 100+ degree heat and varying American accents will be reminder enough that he's 5,000 miles away from home. Also, he'll finally get to meet Kate. I hope I'm there when they get to see each other for the first time in person. I also hope their airport greeting is less awkward than my first one with Cayden where I ended up sweating my ass off maneuvering the maze that is Heathrow, being grilled by Immigration and having Cayden not recognize me.
As the days got closer, I got more and more excited. Every time we'd talk, Cayden would tell me how many days were left until his move and I'd tell him how many days were left until the wedding. I almost couldn't wrap my head around the fact that this was THE move we've been waiting for since the day we met. Cayden moving here meant our entire relationship as we'd known it was going to change completely. Change for the best, of course.
I'd dreamt about it over and over and over again. Every dream was different--we were living in a different house or we had different jobs or I had neon blue hair and he drove a 1959 El Camino (my dreams are weird). But the best part of every dream was that we were together. And the worst part of every dream was waking up and realizing he wasn't there.
But soon enough, he'd be there every morning. He'd kiss me goodnight every night. We'd have sex whenever we wanted. We'd make love whenever we wanted. We'd sit around in sweatpants and eat Chinese take out whenever we wanted. We'd go out and drinking and regret it for three days after that whenever we wanted. We'd even get to go on dates whenever we wanted.
One day soon, our relationship would be in our control. That day was getting closer and closer.
"Tomorrow's the big day!"I said to Cayden on April 15, the day before his final interview. I was driving to my parents' house for Sunday family dinner.
"I just can't wait for this to be over," he said, his voice think with fatigue.
"How long will it take? What's the process exactly?" I wanted to know every detail.
"I believe I get a number once I get there. When they call my number, I go to the counter and we go over my paperwork to make sure everything is there."
We both knew everything was there. Cayden was so anal retentive he'd checked everything 9 billion times, right down to the positioning of the paperclips.
"Then they ask me a few questions about our relationship to make sure it matches what we put in the documents. From there they should take my passport and that's about it really. They send my passport back to me with my visa, and then I can buy my one-way plane ticket to Dallas."
I wanted to be there with him, holding his hand as we waited for them to call his name. I wanted to jump up and down with him when it was all over and then run into the streets of London to celebrate at the closest pub. Instead, I'd be thousands of miles away and fast asleep. By the time I woke up the next morning, it would all be over.
"It's going to be such an amazing feeling to have the visa in my hand. All of this will be worth it. All of the redundant form, the expensive fees, the waiting... it will all be worth it."
I sat in my car grinning like an idiot. I didn't even care that an asshole in a Yaris cut me off in the fast lane and decided to drive 40 miles per hour. I almost waved at him.
"Baby, I can't wait!" I gripped the steering wheel to stop me from doing an excited dance in the seat. My excited dance can be dangerous at fast speeds. Onlookers might mistaken it for a seizure, road rage, or pure insanity.
Cayden yawned into the phone and I had the sudden urge to curl up on his chest and fall asleep with him.
"Go get some sleep, babe. I wish I could be there with you," I said.
"Ah, that'd be a dream. OK, I love you so much and I'll call you when you wake up in the morning. I'll be able to tell you all about it."
"Can't wait!" I said. "I hope they don't surprise you with anything tomorrow."
I don't know why I even said it, but all of a sudden it was all I could think about. Maybe we filled out one of the papers wrong? Misplaced a paperclip? Or maybe that MIC (Minor In Consumption) I got at a party when I was 17 deemed me an unfit spouse? Or they didn't like that I missed a payment on my Victoria's Secret credit card once? Was it my student loan debt? Would that make them think I couldn't support him if he couldn't find a job? Or maybe they found something in his health records that wouldn't allow him into the US. Tuberculosis? HIV? ...Mad cow?
My excitement was gone and I was filled with anxiety.
"Yeah..." Cayden said. "Let's hope for no surprises."
Based on his response, I could tell I'd filled his head with the same fears. I wished I could take it back.
"Everything will be fine," I said. "Kick some ass and call me in the morning. Love you so much!"
"Love you, too. You're my everything."
I cranked Blue October's "Life's Like a Jumprope" up full blast while I drove to drown out my thoughts. That song always had a way of perking me up, reviving my optimism. The lyrics played over and over in my head as I fell asleep that night.