Once Heather got what she wanted she could not be happier. Overnight she changed into the caricature of a Disney maiden. You even caught her singing and dancing with Milo. It was adorable how she held his little puppy hands as they clumsily sashayed around the room. You couldn’t help but be overwhelmed at how perfect everything seemed to be.
Even work was not such a bother anymore. You did what you were told and stayed out of everyone’s way, which is how they liked it. You didn’t even care if they kept you on or not. The future seemed a very long ways away. Right now life was good.
When your father called to tell you that your mother was sick it blindsided you. He didn’t want to go into details. That only made it worse as imagination is often more sinister than reality. You wanted to press him but thought better of it. People need to come to terms with things in their own minds before they can present them to someone else.
He needed to cut your allowance in half. He’d been missing work. The markets weren’t doing so well. He had his own bills to pay. He just forked over a boat load of money for a ring. They were all absolutely legitimate reasons. The truth was that something was very wrong.
You took it in stride. You were a twenty two year old man, almost twenty three, and you were still receiving a monthly check from your parents like a teenager. That ship was bound to sail sooner or later. The only thing you felt was concern for your mother.
Afterwards, a part of you desperately wanted to talk Heather. You needed someone to listen as you worked it all out. Another part wanted nothing to damper what had been two of the happiest months of your life. You were sure she’d understand and give you all the support you needed. Watching her and Milo play tug of war with an old shirt of yours made you realize that there were some things you needed to figure out first.
You just didn’t want to worry her until you knew more. She had really warmed up to your mother and vice versa. They talked a lot more than you and your mother did, but it was obvious she didn’t know anything. Sadness can bring two people closer together, but there is always the danger that it replaces everything else until all two people have is a joint sense of misery. You didn’t want to bring that into the relationship unless you had no choice.
In the meantime, changes would need to be made. If she lived with you, and seven days a week is living together, then she should get rid of her apartment. The two of you could split some of the bills. Right now you were paying for everything and she made more money than you. You didn’t need half but anything would help.
As you tried to figure out your budget in your head you suddenly became grateful that she had not yet set a wedding date. It was an expense you couldn’t cope with right now. Then the more you thought about it you began to wonder why she hadn’t. She’s already decided the font for the invitations, but not the date. You guessed that everyone has some things they need to reconcile before they can move forward.