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The time I accidentally said 'I love you' first


When A and I started dating, it didn’t take me long to realize that I was falling for him. Like, as in, the first date. Call it cheesy, romantic, ridiculous, or all of the above— but it’s how I felt.

He checked on me at the end of a busy day, listened when I needed to vent, and was always willing to do or try something new. Rather than making me apologize for long work days or running late, he just met me where I was at— and I quite literally, loved that.

When the literal shit hit the fan with all things coronavirus, and our industry came to a screeching halt, I was more than a little stressed. 13 of our 30 weddings of the year had already started conversations of rescheduling at that point, and we had already lost over 35K in corporate event sales. That was the environment he was walking into when he came to visit for the first time.

So let me set the stage: A gets into town, and I am equal parts very excited to see him, and terrified that every time I look at my phone, it’s another bride that is potentially rescheduling their dream wedding.

I also feel the need to interject that he is one of those people that runs. Like, all the time. For fun. Yeah I know, we’re overcoming it. So anyway, he gets off the train and within the first hour or so, he’s gone to change clothes and go for a run. Totally normal. So he is in the other room getting ready to leave and he says what I think is “I love you.”

You may have noticed that I used the word think…

Right. So he’s in the other room, says what I think is “I love you”, and in the cluster that is my reality, I say "I love you too"— at which point, he comes back into the room and said, “I said how are you?”

Ha. Haha. Someone pour me a glass of wine.

I’ve never said ‘I love you’ first y’all. Like, never. I’ve said ‘thank you’, ‘cool’, and ‘oh’ in response to I love you’s before— but I’ve never said it first.

So here I am, spiraling in every avenue of my life, and I’ve just told the guy that yes, I DO in fact love, that I love him. It’s fine. I’m fine.

So anyway… he leaves for his run and there’s this small part of me left wondering will he come back? Will he run BACK to Richmond? Should I buy his ticket back now or……

And then my brain just kind of went, Oh well!

Because y’all, sometimes you need to put yourself out there— even if it means that they don’t say it back in the moment. Sometimes being a grown up means being open, honest, and word vomiting ‘I love you’ when your new boyfriend who doesn’t even HAVE the title ‘boyfriend’ yet, is just asking how you are.

We can’t control every element of our life, no matter how much we want to. You can’t control the spread of a global pandemic, any more than you can control the weather. But what you can control is how open and honest you choose to be, and how you move forward.

What you can control is the version of you that you share with people. The more open and honest you can be about who you truly are and where you’re at— that matters. So no, A didn’t say I love you first. I did. Was it awkward? Yes. But did I regret it in the long run? Absolutely not.

If this pandemic and the weeks and months thereafter have taught me anything, it's that life is too short to wait for perfect timing. Sometimes you just have to lean into the imperfect timing and make the most of it!

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