Mia: Shaken Not Stirred

The true life stories of a NYC female.

Wednesday, November 07, 2007

Mia's Quest for an Engagement Ring

Several months ago the BF asked me to marry him. While it was not my first marriage proposal it was the first time in my life that I actually didn’t arch an eyebrow and ask the guy what drug was he on and change the subject. Before giving him his answer I wanted to make sure the BF knew what he was getting into. I laid it all out for him...

I wouldn’t be ready to marry for at least 2 years. Not until my studies and internships had been completed . He’d known about my goals and more importantly of my intent to leave for the peace corp once I completed my degree from day one. I felt it my duty to reminded him of these plans. I informed him that no matter how much I loved him I would not put my plans aside. He told me he didn’t expect me to give up my plans. He was proud of all I had accomplished and wanted to be part of my all of my future endeavors and dreams as well. He was willing to walk away from the life he had here in order to be a part of my life. In fact he had already contacted the peace corp.

Hearing that just killed me. Past loves had always been intimidated by my strong will, determination, and stubbornness. He was not interested in breaking my spirit or in dominating me as the others had attempted to do. My past loves had wanted me to walk silently behind them and trust that they'd always know what was best for me. To willingly surrender my judgement to them. Pfft as if! This guy was different. Not only was he willing to walk by my side but he was also willing to let me lead. Willing to blindly follow me where ever I chose to lead him simply because he loved me. How could I possibly say no to that? I accepted his proposal.

When he proposed he didn’t have a ring for me he had actually intended to "feel me out" to see if I was willing to take the next step in our relationship. When he saw I felt the same way he did he kind of lost it and proposed on the spot promising to buy me whatever ring I wanted. I think he was afraid I'd change my mind if I gave thought about it again. Honestly I don't need a ring, don't even want one. I would've been happy with a cigar band around my finger but he insisted I have a ring. A ring I would never be tempted to remove from my finger. So we’ve been ring shopping ever since and thus began Mia's quest for an engagement ring. We’ve got it narrowed down between two antique art-deco aquamarine white gold rings.

A few days ago I was in Brooklyn informing my uncle Hassan of my engagement. I can’t say he was too thrilled. In his eyes I’m still a baby and no man will ever be good enough for me unless he and my dad pick the man out. Thankfully my dad trusts my judgement and accepts the fact that i'm an adult, unlike my dear uncle. My uncle sees me as his daughter and despite the fact that I have a dad, a fantastic dad thank you very much! My uncle feels the need to act as daddy #2 albeit a much stricter dad with a thick Egyptian accent. However when he saw me looking at a ring catalog his interest was piqued...

Uncle: Mia why are you looking at those? Why not diamond ring?

Mia: We’re not getting a diamond ring.

Hassan: Why not?

Mia: I don’t like diamonds.

Hassan: Bullshit women love diamonds. Don’t lie to me why this boy not want to buy you diamond ring?

Mia: Seriously I don’t like diamonds.

My uncle arched his brow and held his hands up he wasn’t buying what I was telling him and began clucking his tongue....

Hassan: No. Habibi don’t lie to me. I want to talk to this boy. I’mma going to ask him if he crazy not buying you a diamond ring. I will not allow this.

Just then my mom stepped in

Mom: Hassan she really doesn’t want a diamond. He had a beautiful diamond ring picked out for her. A huge one in fact and she refused it.

Hassan: I don’t believe this.

Mom opened her mouth to argue the fact and he held his hands as if demanding silence from her. She started to talk again and he shot her a stern look...

Hassan: Shhhh my love I am talking now as her father not her uncle.

Ma’s face turned pink and unless the sun is beaming on her face during a heat wave that my friends is never a good sign. She walked up to him glaring at him causing my aunt Nora to break out in a fit of laughter. She knew what was coming....

Mom: Don’t you EVER shhhh me again or you’ll be the known as the uncle that talks with a squeaky voice after I twist off your nuts.

She rolled her eyes at him and punctuated her threat with a twisting motion of her hand and then cursed in Spanish. As she walked away from him she looked over her shoulder and added another curse in Arabic for good measure. Uncle Hassan’s eyes and mouth formed a perfect “O” from the shock. Nora and I were besides ourselves with laughter, watching those two banter is like a comedy routine. My mother has been the only woman in the history of his chauvinistic life that has ever gotten away with putting him in his place. He's always been powerless against her. He got up from his seat and walked over to my mom and wrapped his arms around her kissing her on her cheek.

Hassan: I apologize my love.

Mom: Screw you and the camel your ass rode in on. Nora I don't know how you put up with him. Telling me to shhhh...ese hombre esta loco! (the man is crazy)

Nora was howling with laughter slapping her knee...

Nora: Go to town on his Arab ass Mags you tell him!

Hassan: My darling I don't want you to be angry with me. Please don't be angry. I am so sorry. But our Mia is only one. There is only one Mia.
( He held a solitary finger in the air for emphasis)
No other woman like her in this world. She is angel. She deserves best. Nothing but diamond is suitable for her. All I want to talk to this boy and find out why he’s not putting a diamond on my daughter’s hand.

Nora: Awwww that is so sweet Hassan! Mags you can't stay mad at him. I take it back don't go to town on his Arab ass.

Hearing that my mother softened up and hugged him back.

Mom: Thank you for saying that Hassan. Thank you for loving her so much. But you know she’s always been different. She didn’t even want a ring to begin with. This is a concession on her part to him.

With that said Nora and I went back to the catalog. My uncle wrapped his arm around my mom again and pulled her towards him and gesturing to Nora, ma and himself he said. “My love she is our baby, only a baby! When did she meet this boy?” "Last year just before you left to Egypt." He looked at my mother and Nora as if they had been part of a conspiracy. " I KNEW I should have taken her with me to Alexandria! She’s too young for marriage!" My aunt reminded him that I was still taking finals when he left and he shook his head back and forth cursing himself for not waiting until my finals were over. My mom reminded him that he still had his own two daughters to worry about plus my little sister not to mention my brother and the new baby on the way.

“My friend she is 24 years old soon to be 25. She’s not a baby anymore she’s a woman and her father and I trust her judgement and so should you. I was 5 years younger than her when I married her dad. Nora was just a baby, a teenager still when she married you! It’s time for you to let go just as her father and I have done and just as Nora has done. I promise he’s a good man. You’re going to love him as much as we do. Nora already met him while you were in Egypt and she adores him. You have to accept the fact that our baby is a woman now and she’s going to leave us one day.”

I looked up to see my uncle staring at me. His mind seemed far away. I offered him a big “say cheese” grin and he blew me a kiss and then to no one in particular said, “they grow up too fuckin' fast.”and left the room.

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