How to Fall

  • Spot her across the room
  • Smile, look away

  • Allow a minute or two to pass

  • Make sure she’s still there

  • Go up to her

  • Say hello, introduce yourself

  • Learn about her

  • Continue the conversation, but ask more than tell

  • Get her number

  • Walk her out (if she wishes)

  • Call her the next day

  • Spend the day learning more about each other

  • Hang up, grinning giddily

  • Repeat the previous three steps, sometimes texting instead

  • Plan to meet again

  • Talk for a few days, the plan another outing

  • With flowers, ask to be together

  • Feel the butterflies when she says yes

  • Continue to chat, to meet, and to gift her (not too extravagantly)

  • Celebrate the moments you spend together

  • Meet the parents (politely, charmingly, calmly)

  • After enough time has passed, ask her father for her hand

  • Sigh with relief as he accepts and blesses you

  • Propose

  • Hug and kiss her when she says yes

  • Plan the wedding (let her have her way, it doesn’t matter much to you; all that matters is her happiness)

  • Become husband and wife

  • Love each other endlessly

  • Go to the doctor’s office

  • Get the tests done

  • Wait for results

  • It’s a girl!

  • Baby-proof the house

  • Assemble the crib, paint the nursery, stock up on supplies, attend classes…

  • Wait in the waiting room, fiddling with your hands as you hope all goes well

  • Be called in

  • Quietly enter, as they’re both softly sleeping

  • Hold your new child, gently and with all the love you have

  • Raise her with all the love you have

  • Protect them with all the love you have

  • Attend graduation

  • Help her pack for college

  • With teary eyes, say goodbye

  • Meet again on holidays, over vacation, etc.

  • Receive the card

  • “You’re grandparents!”

  • Celebrate with misty eyes

  • Meet your grandson

  • Enjoy family Christmas, only a month after his birth

  • Propose a toast: “To life!”

  • Endure the chest pain

  • Ignore the burn

  • It grows, it fades, but pay it no mind

  • Sit and chat, but it will come back

  • Enter cardiac arrest

  • Drop your glass

  • Try to stay standing; stumble back into chair

  • Keep eyes open

  • “Squeeze my hand if you can hear me”

  • Tell them you love them

  • Tell them goodbye

  • Hear the panic

  • Sight fading, try to stand

  • Fall.

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