“What are we even doing here.”
“It’s yoga class, Tim. You need to find your inner zen.”
“Steph, while I’m sure yoga has many beneficial effects, I do not think my precious time–”
“‘Precious time,’ psh. I found you playing Warcraft in your room, don’t lie–”
“–should be spent in a room full of yoga mats and young celebrities.”
“To think that I actually saw those words come out of your mouth. You have got to be the most ungrateful–where did you get that?”
“…You gave it to me.”
“No, I didn’t.”
“Hand it over.”
“It’s mine, no take-backs.”
“Give it to me.”
“I like this monkey crawl over me, very zen. Is it a yoga position?”
“Give me that thermos!”
“Jump for it.”
“Hah! Got it!”
“You’re not even that tall, I don’t know why you thought–oh my god.”
“Don’t pass judgement, it’s very un-zen.”
“You brought coffee to a yoga class! What is wrong with you?!”
“Mania keeps me zen.”
“Stop saying zen. You don’t get to say zen when you’re caffeinated.”
“Green tea has caffeine.”
“Next time I’m bringing Damian.”
“He’ll gnaw your arm off before you get here. He takes after Titus. You’d be better off with Cass.”
“Cass likes to take ballet, it’s more fluid.”
“I’ll go with her next time, I like fluid more than zen.”
“Like you could do ballet.”
“Excuse me, but Bruce had us learn the basics.”
“That’s why you’re so graceful, right?”
“I am very offended right now. Give me back my thermos.”
“Not until I replace the coffee with green tea.”
“You are a mean and cruel and sadistic woman.”
“Oh, baby, I love it when you talk dirty.”
“I’m not letting you tag along my next business trip.”
“Oh, come on. I need culture, I need to experience the world. To think this is the first time I’ve seen The Big Orange!”
“Okay, while New York City may be called ‘The Big Apple’ Los Angeles is definitely not called ‘The Big Orange.’”
“It will never be called The Big Orange.”
“Not with that attitude. This is why we’re here at yoga class, for you to open and stretch your mind.”
“My mind is stretched. It’s like a rubber band. Stretch it any more and it’s going to snap.”
“Now wouldn’t that be fun.”
“I’m instituting a five minute break up.”
“We aren’t even–”
“If you two are finished? We’d like to continue the class.”
“…Sorry, yeah, go ahead. We’ll–uh–we’ll just…be in the back. Far away.”
“Thank you. Now breathe in and out…”
I sat at the dining room table, snacking on the small chocolate brownie that was sitting in front of me as I watched Mats interacting with our young daughter, helping her with her homework. It was a simple task of tracing various letters on a piece of paper her teacher provided but no matter how simple her assignments were, Mats was beside her every night to help.
He was very involved when it came to parenting and Emily always appreciated it as she sat in his lap, currently tracing dotted lines with her pencil and alternating between that and taking tiny pieces of brownie into her mouth nevermind the fact the crumbs were finding a way to spill onto her lap and onto the table.
Mats would just have to clean it later.
I playfully reached over the table and inched my greedy little fingers closer to Emily’s own brownie, as mine was now completely devoured. “You wouldn’t mind if I ate this would you, Ily?” I teased. I knew what to expect out of my own boisterous child and it wasn’t a resounding yes.
Her attention darted from her work and to my hands as she lightly moved my hand away before exclaiming, “Hey! Papa said I can only have one brownie before bed! That’s my one!”
I withdrew my hand and laughed, watching as Mats chuckled as well at her serious reaction. Mats had indeed warned her that she was only going to be allowed one dessert before bed. Whenever she received more than that, we found her bouncing off of the walls and unable to sleep as she tried to weasel her way into our bedroom instead of her own.
It often worked. Mats could give into those big brown eyes at any point, no matter what mood he was in but I couldn’t lie and say I wasn’t the same exact way.
Emily just had that effect.
I sat back in my chair and watched her continue working on the assignment, Mats pointing out little things to her as she went along.
“Can I ask you guys a question?” The young child piped up, her head never lifting up her focus from her paper.
“Sure. What is it, sweetheart?” I questioned, waiting for her to provide an answer.
“How did you two meet?” This time her eyes lifted to look up at me and then to glance over her shoulder to her father as he sat behind her. My eyes raised towards Mats as I smirked and encouraged him to be the one to speak. “Go on. Tell the story.”
Mats chuckled and rubbed the scruff of his face, trying to figure out where exactly to start. “Ah, that’s a long story love. I met your mother while we were out with a few friends.”
I had accompanied one of my good friends to a bar for the night for a good time and the chance to let our hair down for once. I was a young student who found herself busy in her books more often than not so going out on the weekends was a rare occurrence. I only made the exception this time because she insisted that she couldn’t go to this alone.
I found out why when I arrived to a table in the bar to find a handsome young man seated next to her guest. Though he had much of a baby face at the time, Mats had a mysterious air to him that immediately captivated me and he seemed interested in taking me in for conversation as well.
Emily now seemed interested in the story as she dropped her pencil and turned in her father’s lap to stare at him while he spoke. “Your mother had on this…” He hesitated to find the appropriate words to use for our young daughter. “…Very fancy princess dress.”
‘Very fancy princess dress’ was code for a slim fitting, maybe even too short, navy blue dress I wore. I could remember it well as it still sat in my closet to this day and it was something Mats would bring up here and there about how the first time he saw me he nearly grew in his pants from the way my ass poked underneath my dress. He also commmented on loving the exposure of my thighs.
I figured he’d save that commentary from our daughter’s, or anyone else’s for that matter, ears.
“Was it love at first sight?” Emily piped up, enthusiastically engaged in the storytelling.
“Definitely,” Mats nodded. I knew he wasn’t quite telling the truth. Lust at first sight? Maybe. But we didn’t exchange numbers until a few meetings later. That was when we started to grow a connection beyond having mutual friends and decided to pursue something between us.
And now here we were with a house together, a child together, and a life together.
“I knew I wanted to marry him from the moment we met,” I chimed in with a smile directed towards Mats.
Emily frowned. “Well how come I don’t remember the wedding?”
“You were really young. Like 6 months old at the time. You were there. You just can’t remember it.” But I did. I remember the puffy little white dress she wore and the pearl headband that pushed back her messy dark waves that looked just like Mats. I was worried she would break into a cry in the midst of sitting in the crowd but luckily she found entertainment in the hands of my mother and the rings on her finger.
“You have a lot of questions today, angel,” Mats commented while she just shrugged in response.
“I just wanted to know the story of my mama and papa.”
sunburn - ed sheeran / lovers or liars - lauren aquilina / something great - one direction / more than friends - gabrielle aplin / fools - lauren aquilina / bumper cars - alex & sierra / almost lover - a fine frenzy / oceans - seafret / stuck on you - new politics / everything you are - ed sheeran / ships in the night - mat kearney / stay - hurts / young blood (renholder remix) - the naked and famous / a twist in my story - secondhand serenade / so contagious - acceptance / maybe you - say lou lou/ latch - kodaline / sweetest devotion - adele /btsk - ms mr / mess is mine - vance joy / the journey - dave baxter