I spoke to my mom on the drive from Houston to see what she had going on that evening. She said there wasn't much to do and that it would be a quiet evening at home. I know her all to well; in Momma D terms that means "probably headed to the casinos in Oklahoma to play some penny slots." I didn't tell her that I was coming in town. I figured that if I was going to put her in shock from the big news, I might as well give her a heart attack too by showing up unannounced. Thoughtful, I know.
Dave and I pulled up to a pitch black house in Gunter at around 9:30 pm. We weren't sure if they were asleep or gone so we tried to be as loud as possible; we didn't want to get shot by sneaking into the house. Not to our surprise (well, Dave was a little shocked that I called it), they were at the casino. Gunter, being the giant metropolis that is - just north of a 1000 population, no stop lights, middle of nowhere - now has a Sonic, so Dave and I went to grab some food while we waited for our little gamblers to return.
I was driving a vehicle they hadn't seen before, and we had all the lights turned on in the house (a rarity even when they are home). So I had to call Momma D and tell her that Dave and I were at the house; again, so we wouldn't get shot (these things happen in Texas). She was a little confused, but not too surprised because I do things like this from time to time. When they got back to the house, we hugged and greeted each other as usual, but then I told her to sit down.
I should preface this part of the story with a brief description of Momma D. She is a sweet, God-loving woman, that practically raised her two sons on her own. She is passionate about two things in her life (besides penny slots), her faith and her family. Anyone who has ever met my mother knows this about her; she is very transparent about what she loves in life. The whole reason I started this blog is because she hates the fact that my brother and I are so far away, and she wants to know what is going on in our lives.
When I said to sit down, her face dropped; there is no telling what in the world was going through her head (she couldn't tell you either because she doesn't remember much of the night due to her state of shock). I told her the story exactly how I had been telling everyone else. When I got to the part about accepting the offer, she gave a reaction that neither Dave or I expected. Oh yeah, Dave is sitting on the couch next to me watching all this go down. His version is pretty funny. Anyways, Momma D just starts going off on me.
She wasn't angry. She was just kind of upset and shocked blended together at once. She started firing a million questions at me. She wanted to know if I even knew where Singapore was, to which I reassured her that I did ( I left out the part about thinking it was in South America). I finally had to stop her and say that Singapore wasn't really the reason I was in Dallas. I told her that in fact, Singapore wasn't really big news at all compared to... (then I pulled out the rings) ...the fact that I was about to ask Tara to marry me and come with me.
You want to talk about hitting a brick wall. Ever since my mother met Tra in high school, she's wanted me to marry that girl. She loves Tara to death. The fact that I was finally going to propose to her was a dream come true. I think she has always wondered if either of her sons would ever get married (I know that she's completely given up on getting any grandchildren from us). Needless to say, her mood changed instantly. She started crying and wanted to look at the rings. Luckily, she was too in shock to really focus on them (see previous story for that adventure).
We stayed up and talked for a few more hours, and then, I went to lay in bed and stare at the ceiling for the rest of the night. I'm pretty sure that Dave and Ricky were the only two that got any sleep that night because I know that Momma D didn't ever close her eyes. We went to my aunt's house the next morning and went through the EXACT same scenario. There was plenty of tears and hugs going around the room when I told them about Tara (mostly from Dave who enjoys a good hug and cries over everything). Then, we talked for a while longer and showed off the rings; which got a little more scrutiny this time around.
With good luck wishes and more hugs and more tears we finally left Gunter. We went to meet up with my brother and his roommate in Dallas. The waiting game for Tara to get off work had officially begun.
It was now time to propose to my girlfriend.