As much as I’m not a journalist, I use journalism. And when you photograph a relationship, it’s quite wonderful to let something unfold in front of you.—Annie Leibovitz
Almost three years have passed since Kat and I first met. Once we started talking to each other, we never stopped. Interestingly enough, the one thing we were both fairly sure did not actually exist was love. Having tried the relationship thing before and failed miserably, we were neither one convinced that this whole love thing was even possible. Mutual attraction? Sure. Long-term tolerance for the sake of companionship? Absolutely. Actual love? Nah, it’s a myth.
Okay, so we might have been wrong. We’re not the first two people in the history of the world to start a relationship without giving in to what we were pretty sure was a myth. Once that opinion changed, we still didn’t want to be all mushy about it. After all, there’s 25 years difference in our ages. We get strange looks just holding hands in public, and that typically has less to do with relationship and more to do with my damn legs not wanting to hold me upright. The expression on people’s faces when we do kiss in public is annoying. Of course, the expression on our faces when we see couples kissing in public is pretty annoying as well. Mush. Blech.
On my end, though, the response to our relationship was more silent; the kind of silence that occurs when one witnesses something horrible happening right in front of them. Some just stopped talking. Others unfriended and blocked me on social media. And those who are still emotionally stuck in high school talked behind our backs, but not to our faces. While no one terribly close was involved, the response is still disappointing. We thought we had chosen only intelligent acquaintances.
Three years in, our relationship status isn’t likely to change. I’m more surprised than anyone that this relationship thing has actually happened because I was so very convinced it wasn’t possible. What we’ve learned is that love does exist, that we’re not on some existential list of doom, and that it’s rather entertaining when I tell the doctor Kat’s my fiancé, not my daughter. To those who still have a problem with us, I have but one word for you: Goodbye.