For a long time, I had a type: dark, intense, just a touch remote—the kind of man for whom "I love you" was something said instead of something done. You know the ones I mean, right? They don't want you, but they don't want to let you go. At the end of most dates, I'd find myself tempted to pat the guy reassuringly and say, "Not to worry, you didn't give anything away." My hope was that this sort of man would fall in love with me. My prayer was that I would get over him. My wish was that we had never met.
Then, just when I decided I could have a fine life as a bachelor girl, Johannes appeared with his slow-dance eyes and his easy laugh—and little by little, he crushed my resistance like grapes into wine. Except for a couple of bouts of stomach flu and a few genuinely ugly arguments, there hasn't been a day in nearly 13 years when I haven't wanted to inhale him. But there's a catch.
In order to share custody of his son, Johannes lives on another continent. For those of you playing the home game, that would be 8,000 miles, nine lost luggage situations, and a six-hour time difference away. We are together roughly every two months—making us the envy of most of our married friends. But there's a twist.
Her name is Julia Claire Labusch—and she's our 3-year-old daughter.
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