Because We Went To Hooters

So there’s a TikTok trend going around right now where couples who started as friends are sharing pictures of how their relationship evolved from friends to more than friends over time. Since Emily and I were friends for over two years before we started dating, I decided to make my own version of the trend.

Going through all of our old pictures made me smile and cry at the same time. I thought about all those moments that, looking back, should have been obvious signs to both of us. But, as much as Emily and I are both overthinkers, it took an entire conversation over drinks and food for us to finally put the pieces all together.

A Day I’ll Never Forget

Saturday, April 24, 2021 started just like any other kid-free Saturday after the divorce. I’d asked Emily if she’d be willing to go couch shopping with me, and she said, “Sure, but I need you to come be a tall person first and help me fix the lights in my bedroom.” When I laughed about the idea of someone 5’4″ being tall, Emily said, “Look, you’re a solid 6 inches taller than me!”

As Emily and I started hanging up the string lights, my ex-husband texted me because he’d thrown out his back and wondered if I could watch the kids for a bit while we went to an urgent care clinic. I looked at Emily and she said, “I love your kids! I’ll help keep them entertained while we look at couches.” So on we went.

The day ended up being a lot of fun: We got lunch with the kids, took them with us to a couple furniture stores where they (along with Emily) basically planned out how to redo our entire home. They started to get a bit restless, so we took them to a playground for a bit, then returned them to their dad after he got home and was situated with his back. Emily and I hit another furniture store after that, and finally picked the perfect living room set.

I thought the day was ending at that point, since Emily mentioned being tired. But as we neared her apartment for me to drop her off, she looked at me and said, “Actually, do you want to go grab drinks or something?” I excitedly agreed, and in true bisexual fashion, we settled on the Hooters not too far from her apartment.

It Happened At Hooters

As we entered Hooters and they seated us, we both started making jokes about how it probably looked funny for two girls to go to Hooters together. We ordered, the conversations continued, and we had a couple drinks + some shots of a peanut butter whiskey they were letting people sample. Everything felt like it always did with Emily, and I just sat there enjoying the moment.

At some point, the conversation turned to dating and relationships. I’d been single for about a year at this point, and Emily had just recently broken up with her boyfriend of 9 months a couple weeks prior. She made a comment about men being trash, and I asked her if that meant she’d finally committed to not being straight (we’d had several conversations about her sexuality and her questioning if she wasn’t straight).

Then she said, “Well, I still haven’t kissed a girl, so I don’t know.” I reassured her that you didn’t need to kiss boys or girls to justify your sexuality, but then I threw out an offer: “You know, if you ever want to try kissing a girl, I’m available.”

As soon as the words left my mouth, I felt overwhelmed with anxiety. After a year and a half of holding back my feelings for Emily, I’d finally slipped up and said something. The next few seconds felt like they lasted hours as my heart raced in anticipation of her response.

Finally, we made eye contact and she said, “I mean, I’d be down for that.”

We both had a moment of realization, followed by countless questions. Had we both felt the same way but held back out of fear? Was Emily just drunk? What was happening here?

From there, the conversation got very interesting. I confessed my feelings for her, and she reciprocated them. We talked about how the timing had always been off for us, and how we both valued the friendship we’d built together. Finally, we decided to wait until we left the restaurant to pursue these newfound feelings any further, and agreed to just enjoy the meal.

Once we stepped out of the restaurant and got into my car, I looked at her and asked, “So are we doing this?” She laughed and said, “Well not here in the parking lot!” So I asked her which apartment we wanted to go to, and she said mine.

The car ride felt like it took forever. It was obvious we were both excited and nervous, almost in the way middle school kids are when they experience that first “crush” on someone. We both kept giggling and stumbling over our words.

Finally, we made it back to my place. We went inside, and I fiddled around with the television to find some movie or show for us to watch. It didn’t take long for us to cuddle up, and finally I asked her if she still wanted to try kissing a girl.

She laughed and said, “Yes, but I need you to promise me something first.” I told her I’d promise anything she wanted, and she said, “If either of us feel weird, we stop immediately. And we both agree that no matter what happens, we will still be friends. I don’t have many friendships like this and I really don’t want to lose you.” I agreed, and told her I felt exactly the same way. She made me pinky promise. I laughed.

I’ll never forget that first kiss. It felt like fireworks, and we both pulled away smiling and instantly pulled out a Grey’s Anatomy reference by saying, “Pants feelings!” It was by far the best kiss I’d ever experienced with someone.

I know we had a movie on, but honestly we didn’t really watch it after that. I don’t think either of us anticipated just how incredible that evening was going to be, but I think that the sexual tension had been building for so long between us that the first kiss just opened the flood gates.

Meant To Be

I know Emily and I met under the most unconventional circumstances, and our relationship started in a way that’s very different from most. However, I don’t think anyone who knows our story can argue that it wasn’t meant to be.

I always wanted one of those love stories you see in the movies, and I definitely got that with Emily. I firmly believe she was the love of my life, and no one will ever be able to convince me otherwise. We both went through so much crap, and yet that crap is exactly what caused us to cross paths. Yet, it only took a single conversation for us to both share what I know had already been on our hearts for some time.

Because of Hooters, I finally got to take my chance with the girl I’d been wanting to kiss since the night we went to see Lizzo together a year and a half prior. And because of Emily, I got to experience true, unconditional love.

No matter what happens from here on out, I can die knowing that one person loved me exactly the way I am. And for that, I’ll always be grateful. So, Emily, thank you for loving me and making my dreams come true. I’ll never be able to express with words just how much your love and our time together impacted me, just like I’ll never be able to repair my broken heart now that you’re gone.


One thought on “Because We Went To Hooters

  1. Pingback: Because I Asked Her On A Date | Because Of Emily

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