We Close Our Eyes

We are in Santa Barbara. It is November, and Anne and I are here for our anniversary, walking back to our hotel after the first romantic dinner we’ve enjoyed in months.
Though it is Saturday night, this normally crowded street is nearly deserted, because it is pouring rain. A cold, relentless rain that soaks into my shoes and clings to my body. The cold cuts straight through me, numbing my hands and feet.
The few people who have chosen to brave the storm are huddled in doorways and under awnings. Anne and I share a too-small umbrella in a futile attempt to stay dry.
It has been a wonderful evening, ending a wonderful day. We haven’t gotten to spend much time just enjoying each other’s company, just being together for several weeks, and I am cherishing every rain-soaked moment.
The storm intensifies as we hurry back to our hotel, turning downspouts to waterfalls, and the street into a small stream. Normally, the urge to stomp in puddles is irresistible to me, but the numbness is creeping up my legs now, and I need little encouragement to leave the puddles alone.
After a few blocks, the cold and rain is too much for me, and I suggest that we stop, and hail a cab.
Anne stops, and looks at me, her blue eyes gleaming. She says they’re green, but they’re blue…I see them whenever my mind wanders, so I know.
She steps out of the small shelter our umbrella is providing, and stands unprotected in the rain.
“I want to walk in the rain!” She declares.
“But it’s 40 degrees!” I remind her, shivering. A few passersby look at us as if we’re having a fight, and I chuckle to myself. They couldn’t be more wrong.
“I don’t care,” she tells me, her hair falling down and clinging to the sides of her face, her jacket darkening as it absorbs the storm. “Someday, I’m going to want to walk in the cold rain, and feel it on my face, and I’m not going to be able to. So I’m going to do it now.”
She reaches out and touches my cheek, and pulls my face to her. She leans towards me, kisses my nose, and walks away, her face cast upwards, her palms turned up to receive the rain.
She stomps into a puddle, and turns around.
“C’mon, you weenie! Walk with me!”
She is so beautiful, so joyous. The storm threatens to draw a curtain of rain around her, obscuring her from my view. Though she is twenty feet from me, I can see her beaming and feel her joy. She positively loves this.
I watch her, happily standing in the rain. In this moment I know why I married her. I know why she is the other half of my heartbeat.
But it’s 40 degrees. There’s no way I’m giving up this umbrella.
I lean against the rain, and close the distance between us. When I draw near her, she reaches out and knocks the umbrella out of my hand.
As it falls to the ground, she takes me in her arms. She pulls me to her, and kisses me.
“I love you,” she says, rain dripping off her nose onto my face.
She does love me. It’s one thing to say it, and one thing to hear it, but it’s another thing to feel it.
“I love you too,” I reply.
We stand there in the rain for a moment, looking at each other. We are soaking wet, freezing cold, and desperately in love.

188 thoughts on “We Close Our Eyes”

  1. I also have been a lurker for a while. As a voracious romance novel reader (yes,yes I know…), I have to say your description was truly marvelous. I especially teared up at Anne’s response to the post. You are both very lucky as I hope you know.
    I’m so glad I found out about this site. You have become a part of my day.
    Thank you.

  2. Wil, you are kick-ass writer. That was mind-blowingly awesome. Maybe you should do workshops for “how to woo your love…”

  3. Wow… Whoever said romantic and emotion men are wusses have no idea what they are talking about because right now you, Wil, are the sexiest man on this earth! DAMN! Anne is one lucky woman.

  4. This was a great piece of writing, and definitely reflects a wonderful marriage — it made me smile just reading it. Then I remembered that I’m lucky enough to be in the same boat, in love with my wife with whom I’ve been for almost 13 years (married 7 of ’em). Our rules: (1) Never forget to say “I love you” and truly mean it at least thrice a day, (2) Don’t go to bed angry, and (3) Make your partner laugh at least as much as they make you do it. Lots of joy to the both of you and keep up the good work!

  5. hey wil,
    you’ll probably never get this far down the comments to ever read this, but i’m delighted to know that you and anne spent your anniversary here in santa barbara. it’s a pretty special community and those of us who live here know it. i try to take a moment everyday to be thankful that i get to live here. (even when it rains!) if you two ever make it up here on a weeknight you can catch me on the air 7p to mid on 103.3 kruz fm. give me a ring if you hear me. i’d love to hear from you!

  6. Well, that’s a lovely story, even more so because it’s true. It was so good that your wife felt compelled to comment about it (and thanks for letting us read it). When you can write something that makes folks stop and think and feel, that’s powerful. Now, excuse me while I go take a good, long look at my loved one.

  7. Glad to know I’m not the only insane woman who enjoys innocent flights of fancy such as walking in the rain and splashing about in puddles.
    Hopefully, I’ll someday get a guy that doesn’t look at me like I’m crazy when I do it.
    Will, you’re wife sounds wonderful, and any woman who can enjoy such wonderful things is likely to keep that joyous spirit to the end of her days. You are indeed a lucky fellow, my friend.

  8. Wil, that was one of the most beautiful things I’ve ever read. I can tell you’re still madly in love, and that’s awesome.
    Here’s to walking in the rain!!!!

  9. That was one of the loveliest things I have read in a very long time. Keep writing, Wil. You are very, very talented.

  10. A nice little story, Will. Very sweet, very romantic. But it manages to give me the urge to slap the hell out of you with a dead fish. Then again, I’m still adjusting to the “non-single” life. Still have some bitterness. Sappy but nice story.

  11. Now that’s romance…sometimes it seems it’s in short supply in this day and age.
    Best of luck to the two of you.
    If anyone can find me a woman like this, name your price.

  12. *squish*squish* Never when I found the Blog of young Ensign Crusher did I expect to see such a touching entry about the love of his life.
    You are a beautiful soul Wil Wheaton, and damn if Anne isn’t lucky. :)
    Now devoted Wilwheaton.net reader.

  13. Typical to my name, when I saw your wife’s comment about her eyes being green, and you seeing them as blue, a song came to mind:
    So excuse my forgetting, but these things I do
    You see I’ve forgotten if they’re green or they’re blue
    Anyway the thing is – what I really mean
    Yours are the sweetest eyes I’ve ever seen
    And you can tell everybody this is your song
    It may be quite simply but now that it’s done
    I hope you don’t mind, I hope you don’t mind
    That I put down in words
    How wonderful life is now you’re in the world
    I hope you don’t mind
    I hope you don’t mind that I put down in words
    How wonderful life is now you’re in the world
    and as I think in song, I picture this to be the most perfect backing to this beautiful, and emotional scene. Touching, Will.

  14. damn you wil! my eyes are welling up and i’m still at the office!
    thank you, though, for sharing such a beautiful and intimate moment with us.

  15. Your post has brought tears to my eyes. My boyfriend died 3 weeks ago of the cancer he’d been suffering on and off through his 26 years, losing an eye and a leg to it. I miss him so badly. We didn’t have long together. We originally met online 3 and a half years ago, chatted at least twice a week, and when he knew he was dying, he asked if he could meet me. We had 19 precious days in each other’s company.
    Treasure every moment as if it were your last. One day it will be.

  16. This is the most beautiful posts I have ever read.
    I read it and my heart echos, because I understand how it feels to be that in love.

  17. THAT is exactly the painful joy I felt on our wedding day and throughout this past week as we adjust to our newly enriched life with our newborn daughter

  18. It’s been great reading this story.
    I’m speechless after reading it.
    I hope that one day I could find someone who can love me like you do.
    Find someone to feel the way you feel.

  19. “A wise man knows when to get out of the rain.”
    We have but fleeting moments, and then only memories remain. blah… blah… blah…
    Dude, this is a premium example of the bitter sweet moments that forge a life well lived. In honesty thanks for sharing, in humor how was that case of pneumonia?

  20. Hey, thanks! I’m writing my wedding vows, and I think I may gank your line “I know why she is the other half of my heartbeat” and paraphrase. I love that line. It’s so perfect and so totally how I feel about my other geek half :-)

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