Today is Kareem's birthday.
he is 43, looks far younger with his smiling, vivid eyes and incredibly young spirit.
maybe that is why i love him so much? i dont know. i dont remember how my life looked like before loving him.
I got him a watch of his favourite brand, simply wraped in it's case. red box having only the trade mark on it.
I will go to his office at 2 to give it to him. Already asked his secretary about his schedule. he has 15 minutes before next meeting starts. I would surprise him in those 15 minutes. wont wait until he comes home.
I arrived there 10 minutes early just to have time to check on my looks at the ladies' room, then marched into his office. winking at his secretary, i knocked the door.
come in, dalia.
i walked in and wihtout looking up from his laptop, he stretched his hand to me, thinking i was his secretary brining documents for the next meeting.
My face lit with a bright smile, while i was walking to him. stood infornt of the desk when he looked up.
Mariam???, hey, love. that's a pleasant surprise.
he stood up, came around the desk, gave me a quick kiss. what's up? where you in the neighbourhood?
No. i said. i came to give you this. and held the while bag up.
white simple bag, holding the shop's name "Time Trade". says nothing to him.
it's your birhtday's gift. i wanted to surprise you. maybe you'd even wear it for the next meeting.
he looked bluffed somehow. looked at the box inside the bag, and still cant figure out what it is.
i felt a childish happiness.:)))))
he got the box out and immediately recognized the trade mark graved on the red box.
looking at me with his big boyish eyes, surprised and not daring to believe.
"yes. please open it and see if you like it first. then we can talk"
"this is too much. this is too expensive. this is too precious."
"you are more precious to me"
this was all i could say. i wanted so much to tell him how much i love him, how much i appreciate his mare existence, what he means to me. but i kept silent and my eyes said it all.
he opened the box, looked at the watch. took it out and held it in his hands.
"it looks lovely" he said.
"we can change it. i chose another one at the shop and put it on hold. i know you have a meeting in 5 minutes. if you wish to see the other one, i'd stop at the shop and ask them to hold it longer for you till you check it and then choose."
he came closer, kissed and said "we are leaving right now. come"
"hey, your meeting."
we walked out of the office, he talked to dalia for a second then we left.
"leave your car here. the driver can get it home. come with me" i said. i know he is too tired to drive.
i drove to the shop, he checked the other watch, but decided he liked the one i chose better.
"come, let's have lunch. i am hungry" he said. there was a hotel nearby, we went there and checked the restaurant. it's one of his favourties.
the restaurant was nearly empty. we chose a table next to the window, placed the orders and just sat there.
he wasnt talking. i knew he wanted to say something. he was looking at me, so intensily.
we kept a light talk about business, the postponed meeting he was happy to escape, the kids.
food arrived. his favoourite pasta and my sea-food pizza.
i wasnt really hungry. i was very happy. I wanted today to be a happy day for him. i wanted it to be a special one. IT IS SPECIAL TO ME.
simple happiness filling my heart because he liked my gift. becasue i love him. because we were having lunch together, forgetting the whole world. just being wiht him makes me happy. i kept looking at him while we talked and my mind drifted away. i was thinking, oh God, how could i possibly love soemone that much. we share our lives, we have a home, kids and a stable life. wonderful in every meaning of the word.
but he is not my husband. not in the traditional meaning of the word.
he is the man i love. so much. to the extend that it hurts not to hold him. wish i could hold him right now.
none would have objected.
as we were leaving, i was walking next to him and we were having light conversation. deep down i was aware of all people around us. i wanted them all to know how much i love this man. I wanted them to see how much i was happy. i was smiling, my eyes shone with all the happiness and excitement i feel. i was listening to him and smiling. i said nothing. but my eyes said it all.
they simply said it out love: God, how deep i love you. in every single meaning of this word. for the rest of my life.
i drove back home. we were talking, still light things. nothing serious.
the kids were about to sleep, we kissed them good night and went to the living room.
he sat at the couch as i came in with the cake. chocolate cake. small one with only one candle to blow.
i smiled. " it's only you and me this year. i didnt invite anyone. your parents will come for lunch tomorrow"
he came closer to the table, leaned and blow the candle.
i took a photo of him. he looked up at me and smiled. i took another photo. and a third one.
i cant resist not capturing those moments of our lives. so i went on taking pictures.i love taking pictures of him. if it was up to me, i wouldnt have stopped taking pictures of him. i often take photos of him without him noticing. while he works at home, sleeps, talks on the phone, plays iwht the kids.
i even have some of him while he was shaving.
when he notices me, he keeps laughing and says i should work as a photographer to get this need fulfilled.
he cut the cake and handed me over a slid, cut a slide for himself, then sat next to me on the couch.
we silently ate it.
Kareem turned to me, taking me in his arms, kissing my cheeks and said " thank you sweetheart. this was just wonderful. everything. the surprise, the watch, the lunch, the cake, this hug. you are too good to be true.
I am lucky to have you."
I held him very tight, kissed his cheek and just said " you don't know how much i love you. it is beyond explaining. beyond words to express. you are all i have and all i ever wanted."
and i meant it. he is all i have and all i ever wanted.
Kareem, the love of my life.