If anyone were to ask him, Jerry would say, without hesitation, that he loved his wife. It was an indisputable fact. They were high school sweethearts, turned college (university actually) sweethearts, turned married couple; almost like it was out of a fairy tale.
Yes, Jerry loved his wife. At 21 years-old, he couldn’t be more head-over-heels for Laura. Their wedding was small, as neither had many friends. Thomas was back from the army and was able to be Jerry’s Best Man. And Sari was able to sneak away from her classes in med school to be the Maid of Honor. The remaining guests were close friends and family, excluding Jerry’s mother. Even his father had travelled across the country to attend his wedding.
And, then, there was that moment. Everyone turned, Jerry lifted his head. All eyes fell on Laura, in her white dress, her curled hair, and her sparkling grin. Jerry couldn’t help but allow a tear to roll down his face. After all these years, finally, he was marrying the woman of his dreams.
In the years to follow, everything seemed to follow a plan. They moved into a crowded apartment, then a house. The house quickly became a home, with Jerry mowing the lawn on Sunday mornings while Laura hung the laundry out to dry on the clothesline. They bought a new car, though Laura seemed more interested in the minivan. Jerry had responded simply with, “I could never see myself driving one of those. Too ‘soccer mom’.”
One evening, while they sat together on the couch watching hockey, Jerry noticed that Laura seemed restless.
“Is something bothering you, Hun?” he asked. She didn’t look at him, but seemed to become more bothered, now that he had brought her thoughts into reality. “Laura. What is it?”
Laura turned to him, a hint of tears in her eyes. “Did you mean what you said about the minivan? That you could never see yourself driving one?”
Jerry found the question completely random. The sedan they had was excellent, both in fuel economy and sportiness. He couldn’t figure out her motive. “Well, yeah. Minivans are for guys who are controlled by their wives, not in love with them.”
Laura gave him a look, as if that comment was a little rude. Jerry saw the disappointment on her face, and his concern grew.
“Honey. Please. Tell me what’s wrong. Whatever it is, you can tell me,” Jerry pleaded. Taking her hands in his, Jerry moved his head to make eye contact with Laura. Tears silently streamed down her face. He pulled her in, wrapped his arms around her. “Laura. I’m sorry.”
She hugged him back. Jerry fought to find his voice. He could never keep himself from crying when he saw Laura cry. “Look,” he said, still holding her. “If it means that much to you, we can return the car, and get the minivan. Just… can we get the red one?”
Laura let out a small laugh, and Jerry could feel her tears soak into his shirt.
“Jerry,” she whispered. “I’m pregnant.”
And with that, for the first time in his life, Jerry was going to be a father.