The angelic chef, the kind of love I wanted, and how he melted my heart (thank u, next!)
I want a love where we have an amazing(ly silly) story about the day we met up.
For our first date, we cooked together, because I wanted an excuse to use the spiralizer I impulse-purchased. And when he knocked a knife off his tiny kitchen counter, he did exactly what he was NOT supposed to do: he swooped to catch it. Twice. (“It was a reflex!” he’d throw in every time we told that story.) The first time, he missed. The second time, the blade got his pinky.
My eyes widened. “…are you okay?” AND THEN I saw the blood drip.
He rushed to collapse onto a bench by his window. “Just so you know, I’m probably going to pass out in the next fifteen minutes [over the sight of my blood].”
I found some gauze and pulled up a chair. The irony? He had plans to go to culinary school for his second degree.
I want a love where, three or four dates later, when the condom breaks, he goes far beyond going with me to buy Plan B. He gets my favorite ice cream and chocolate, too. And he stays up to snuggle and watch The Land Before Time with me, because he believes in never ending the night on a bad note. And, knowing that Plan B induces exceptionally shitty periods for me, he sends me .gifs of fluffy kittens over the next few days.
I want a love where he doesn’t bat an eye when I say, “I’m volunteering for the Fistitorium at the greatest masquerade on Earth.” He’s reluctant to go, though, until I tell him, “Look, I know $100 for a party ticket is a lot. But I’m happy to pay for yours, because I know you’re moving out-of-state for culinary school in three months, and I don’t know where you plan on living after that. For all I know, this might be our only chance to go to this event together.”
I want a love where, the first time we say “I love you,” I lean in for a kiss, but stop myself and sigh because I remember that he that has a sore throat. And he says, “I totally saw that coming,” and we laugh. We then Google, “can the common cold be transmitted via sexual contact?”
I want a love where, when he’s looking up at the scenic beach photo on the hospital ceiling, and trying not to think about the IV needle in his arm; I’m the one sitting next to him and holding his hand.
I want a love where we can drive off to his hometown in the middle of nowhere, where the stars shine the most beautifully. The streetlights are so scant that we use our phone flashlights to find a sleeping bag to share and fuck in while I look up at the sky.
I want a love where I spend so much time at his place that Google Maps thinks his place is my home, and my actual place is my work. And when we move in together for a semester, we rarely argue, because the only real difference from how it was, in the beginning, is where my belongings are.
I want a love who knows exactly what I mean when I say, “Eddie Huang started his restaurant for similar reasons to me building my blog.” Because the ultimate way to escape racism and implicit bias against Asian-Americans is to create a business of your own. One that’s relatively removed from the system.
I want a love who not only goes with me to Woodhull Sexual Freedom Summit, near D.C. but also hangs out with my sex blogger friends and introduces me to journalists he knows in the area. Instead of the Hilton Alexandria, we stay in an Airbnb with a kitchen where he can make me eggs Benedict for breakfast. I tell him that poached eggs are now my favorite because of him.
I want a love where he gladly puts my sex toys in the dishwasher. “Well, I was going to get your vaginal fluids in my mouth anyway. I’d be more concerned about food particles getting in your vagina.”
I want a love where, when I order an inflatable pool to take photos of sex toys in, he attempts to inflate it with only his breath. Yeah, there’s an air compressor nearby, but also a swarm of bees around it. The sun starts setting and we, light-headed, admit defeat and decide to get the air compressor another day. But he insists he would have continued blowing air if he knew there was no other way.
I want a love where we drive for 24 hours (split up over 3 days) from New York to our new home in Texas, like the true Michigan natives we are. We appreciate the look of shock, awe, and concern from the hotel receptionist in Nashville, Tennessee when he sees our Michigan IDs.
I want a love where we can go on an adventure tracking down the butt plug that got lost in the mail. Our Airbnb is in a new building, and the nearby restaurant delivery drivers and mail carriers struggle to find it.
I want a love where if for the umpteenth time, we have to stop having sex because it hurts me too much, he holds me. “I think you should see a doctor soon,” he says. And he stays silent when I cry because I’m terrified. I don’t know what the fuck my body is doing or what sex will look like for me in the future.
I want a love where I can dedicate our new apartment closet’s shelves to sex toys. There’s no judgment when I listen to Gabe the Dog bork songs indefinitely while I take photos of my Velvet Thruster.
I want a love where he brings home piping bags from work and joins me in decorating sugar cookies with icing drawings of sex toys. The photos I take of them for my first sponsored post turn out beautifully.
I want a love where I can feel safe saying, “I looked up how much it would cost to buy life insurance at 24, and whether it would cover suicide.” And he tells me that, though it’s easy to feel trapped, I will always have other options. When he’s overseas and not in a place where we can share housing, but I still need somewhere to run, I can live with his parents.
I want a love who accepts my dysfunctional relationship with food and actively tells me it’s okay to throw food away sometimes. Because, despite literally being a model, I’ve swallowed the message that my body isn’t thick enough or good enough. I feel guilty about how I should be consuming more calories all the damn time. So sometimes, acceptance looks like me protesting, “But I might eat it tonight or tomorrow night!” and him responding, “Oh my God. You sound like a hoarder.”
I want a love who discreetly finishes up my oxtail soup en croute for me when we’re having lunch with his chef coworkers because it’s only the 4th or 5th course out of 7 and I already can’t take any more. There’s probably $50 of white truffle on top of the soup alone, plus whatever black truffle is in the soup and the butter. Apparently, white truffles are “only” $1200 per pound at this time. We take home the leftover foie gras and later eat it with shitty crackers as a snack.
I want a love where he can tell his parents the subject of my blog. The extent of their response is, “Oh, okay. We’re not that surprised.” Figures. They made him buy condoms by himself when he was 14 so that he wouldn’t feel awkward about it.
I want a love who sends me hilarious mistranslations from his kitchen class overseas, like “The chef cook with the resource to be able to make three places of climaxes.” And, “I come back up to the entrance again and feel, ‘I am good’ afterward.”
I want a love that can make it to the year-and-a-half point, despite statistics saying that it takes an average of 4 months for a long-distance relationship to crumble. Nobody can ever fucking tell me we failed.
I want a love where, when it finally ends, we still care for each other.
It’s the first time he’s cried since 7th grade. And I tell him, “If we don’t see each other again soon, that’s okay. We can still be the inappropriate old people in the retirement home who get naked at the wrong times and constantly do drugs together. Because we’re about to die anyway. And fuck the consequences.”
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