Our story... Even though I Keep Forgetting Our Anniversary... I Love You
I am writing this post to tell our story. I am writing it today because for the third year in a row I forget my anniversary and Abe remembers. He always surprises me and has something planned.
In 2010 there was the Israeli/Lebanon war. We had to leave home and find somewhere else to live. My father is a Canadian citizen so we were able to move to Canada in July of that year. I have been in the country for a week and I needed to register for classes at the University of Ottawa. As I am standing in line I hear some people behind me speak Arabic. I turn and there he was. He was in the science department doing a favor for a friend who was in Egypt for the summer. He was registering for some classes for her. We got to talking and he mentioned that he knew a lot of Arabs. He took my number to introduce me to some people so I do not feel lonely.
The next couple of years we randomly bumped into each other. I would be coming back from a geologic field lab work. My hammer on my side and mud is on shoes. I am sticky and just ready to go home. He would invite me to join him and his friends but I would decline.
When Facebook introduced an app where you send people anonymous messages. I got a message that said:” you’re cute”. We played a game where I would try and guess who was on the other end. This lead us chatting every day all day. We could not meet at the time because he was visiting his parents in Egypt. I remember checking my inbox every 10 minutes to see if he answered. I was so excited but this eventually died out.
A year later he starts inviting me to any outing that he organizes with friends. I would always decline because I was working 2 full-time jobs 7 days a week. I simply never had the time. I noticed he kept invited me even though I kept declining. So we got to chatting and decided to go out for coffee but changed it to ice cream. We met at university and went to the mall. We spent the whole day together. I knew in my heart I wanted to be around him as much as possible. There was something about him that made him feel just right. We started going out and I met him, friends. They told me that every time they tried to introduce him to a girl, he would open my Facebook page and tell them that he wants someone like me. I took Abe to meet my parents so that my dad knows who I am hanging out with. At the end of the day, my father dropped Abe off. He told him that we should just be friends. This is something that wasn't an option for me. I really liked him. Abe is fast like that. He met me and 4 years late BAG! he asked me out!
In May 2011, his parents and my dad decide to meet in Canada for the first time. The plan was to do an engagement in October. The day our parents met was something unexpected. It went from an informal meeting to asking for my hand in marriage. My father was shocked. He said that this situation needs a cigarette. After smoking my mother-in-law said it was time to wear the rings. My father looked at her and said this needs another cigarette. This changed from an informal meeting where I was in jeans to a full engagement. We wore the rings and took pictures then my-mother-inlaw asks me if I am sure Abe is the one. If there is any chance I might change my mind. I told her I was sure he is my one. Then she processed to explain that they would love to attend the wedding and since they leave in a couple of weeks they would be very appreciative if we get married before they leave. My dad looks at her and says this needs a whole cigarette packet.
I found my dress and send it to a seamstress in 4 hours. Everything we booked was owned by Lebanese people who organized everything between them. It was so smooth. Everything worked out. The wedding was fast and rush but fun. They scammed us with the cake and gave us something cheaper than what we paid for. While taking it to the kitchen they dropped it. The cake was mushed and crocked on one side. We had enough money to book half a hall while the other half was booked for a 12-year-old's birthday party. Halfway through the wedding, they stop the music and the little girl goes on stage to read her poem. Even though all this happened it was an amazing night.
After being married for 5 months I was given a 30 days voluntary departure notice from the Canadian government. This was because the lawyer we hired didn't do the proper paperwork. We ended up living apart for a year and a half. This was not easy. Us Arabs we do not have empathy. We do not have a filter. The first question I was asked every time I met someone was:" Aren't you afraid he will cheat on you?". I spent my time there explaining to people that this was not a worry of mine. I was starting to fear that it was getting to me. When people mention it enough you start thinking about it. I knew who I married and I knew it was not an option but the constant questioning can get to you sometimes. I was finally allowed back in the country in 2012.
We had a rough go. Now, 7 years later we have 2 beautiful boys who make my life better in a crazy way. I am poking for a third child but Abe is still not sure. We had our ups and downs. Abe is a person that I can not imagine my life without even though I forget our anniversary. He stands by me and supports me every step of the way. He is an amazing father to our boys. He teaches them every day that being silly and fun is ok. We don't have to take life so seriously all the time.
Through our story, I learned that marriages are hard and they are a lot of work. If you start the marriage thinking divorce is not an option, you are more likely to fight to and make it. I wish you all the best partner who will always have your backs.