Madame, my love, the first day I met you my eyes could not seem to turn away. I asked around for your number, and it read P-R-E M-E-D. I was happy in love, and all nights I prayed to God that one day I might have you in my arms. I thought you would never give me the time of day at first, but to my surprise, we struck the right cord on our first conversation, leading to our very first date. From there, we went on a few more dates—Organic Chemistry, Genetics and Biochemistry just to name a few. I thought to myself, “These were pretty expensive restaurants.” However, it was all worth it: each day, I felt myself growing closer to you.
After getting to know each other, the “define the relationship,” moment arrived, and sweetheart, you knew I wanted much more. You doubted my intentions, but I made it clear that I was sold. From then on, I worked long and hard hours to purchase that ring. I had never done this before, so I went to different people—one named Kaplan and a weird guy named Exam Crackers—who enlightened me on what it took to purchase the right ring. Even though their advice placed a few holes in my pockets, I was willing to bear those holes to have you in my arms one day. I vividly remember the day I went to the MCAT jewelry store to purchase the ring; boy, it was a tough day. The prices I saw broke me into a sweat, but then I remembered how beautiful you were. I thought you deserved it all, so I aimed high.
Proposal day came 30 days later. My palms were sweaty, and I had no clue what you were going to say. I thought to myself “Should I invite my family and friends to witness the proposal?” but then again what if you said “no”? My mind was in a whirlwind, and my stomach was filled with butterflies. At 4:55 pm that faithful day, I looked you in the eyes with such love. I got on one knee and opened the box (aamc.org). To my joy, before I opened the box, you screamed “Yes, yes!” We both cried and immediately began planning the best day of our lives.
We planned it for over a year. Oh, what a treacherous process! We met with different venue owners here and there, but most were already booked or too expensive. I began to panic, hoping that one would be just the right fit for us. On November 15th, we received the great news that we had a venue! Everything was finally coming into place—we had a wedding on the way.
Then it came. I will never forget July 27th, with all our family, friends and well-wishers seated to witness our great union. I don’t even remember who was to my left or to my right—all I could think of was you. Unlike other ceremonies, I walked down the aisle toward you, and the sight was breathtaking. Immaculate in white, you had neither a spot nor a blemish. I felt like I was in heaven, clearly the luckiest person alive. The time came when before God and man, we became one and that marked the happiest day of my life. I didn’t hesitate to show you off to my family and friends; we took many pictures together as the “dream couple.”
That night and many nights after, we did not withhold from intimacy as my fingers glazed through each page of the textbook, and truthfully, you looked even more beautiful. However, weeks following, your love began to feel a little overwhelming as well. I dreamt about you every night, and you were the topic of almost all my conversations. The truth is, as married life progressed, some days were fine, but others were not so much.
All the same, I continued in awe of you, thankful that you let me into your courts. By this time, we were with each other all day long, without a second to spare. Even with that, the dreaded day came when you told me that you were unsure if I loved you enough. “What???” You asked me a ton of questions, and I answered to the best of my knowledge. Sometimes when you had these fits, I did well in assuring you of my love. Other days, I just failed and needed to brush up my skills. I went to every marriage counselor I could find: Dr. Hairrell, Dr. Chen, Dr. Chico—the list goes on. Although time consuming, it greatly helped our relationship, and I was content. Sometimes, you still pouted when I went to football games or hung out with my buddies, but I was always quick to come back home to caress your beautiful hair of Anatomy and Histology, epithelial layer by epithelial layer.
We got over those hurdles, but I still had one last person to meet in the family: PaPaw Robbins. I didn’t know what to make of him. His first statement as he shook my sweaty palms was “You will never get rid of me, son!” I came to learn that he wasn’t joking. As the days passed, I needed him even more and I realized that he was the only person that truly had the keys to every chamber of your heart. During our visits to the nursing home, I noticed that you lit up in his presence in ways that I had never seen before. With that, I told myself “I need to learn PaPaw’s secret to getting to her heart.”
I took a trip to the nursing home alone in order for us to have private chat. Before I could finish explaining all of the struggles we had in our few months of marriage, he stopped me. He turned his gray-filled head and asked “Do you know her love languages?” He leaned forward and said, “To get to a woman’s heart, you must tread slowly but steadily. Each person is different, and you must learn how she loves and receives love. Being her grandfather, I have a few thoughts on how she might receive love. Activities and sweet words in Neurology, Hematology, and Respiratory are few that I have noticed. I am sure there are more, but if you take the time to learn how she wants to be cared for, you will be able show her love.”
All this was foreign to me. It was if I were I learning a different language, and quite frankly, it was frightening. Doubt overwhelmed my mind. Would I ever learn to speak to your standards? Did I have the ability to quench the thirst of your heart? It would not be easy, but I have never and will never shy away from any challenge that would prove my love to you. After all, “Happy wife, happy life” is my motto.
Our anniversary is coming up, and I plan to use PaPaw’s advice to keep you in my arms. Sweetheart, my greatest desire is to hear you say, “yes” again when we renew our vows this anniversary. I see a bright future ahead of us, but you must agree to take this STEP with me. Each STEP 1, 2, 3, and whatever lies ahead. I know we have already been through a lot, but please don’t let me go. Please renew our vows when the time is nigh. Like iron sharpens iron, you have refined me, and to me, your presence is priceless. I will work till my last breath to show you my love. Until then, always know that my heart will never cease to sing “Madame Medicine, Madame Medicine.”
By Martha Teke, MSII