The Promise

“If you keep yourself pure, that means you don’t go with anyone, I will marry you.” Ten years ago, I said this to a girl I went to college with who liked me but I was more into the exotic type. And, besides, I was only joking. She didn’t say anything but there was a curious expression on her face. I shrugged it off. After we graduated, I didn’t see her again. I often wondered what happened to her, though.

Over the years, my memories of college faded. My life was busy with travel, work and women. Especially women. I was in and out of relationships. My friends envied me. My mother despaired over me and my father dismissed her concerns, saying, “He’s just sowing his wild oats.” Life was just how I wanted it to be–fun, exciting and with no strings attached. And for me, marriage wasn’t in the cards. I resolved to a life-long bachelor.

Then, one afternoon, I bumped into that girl, the one to whom I jokingly said that I would marry. She came over to me as I stood outside of a convenience store. “Hi,” she said.

“Hi. You look great.” She did.

She blushed. “Thank you. So do you.”

“So, how have you been?”

“Fine, thanks. And you?”

“Great. So, are you married?”

She shook her head and held out her left hand for me to see. “No.”

“How come?” I asked.

“You made a promise, remember?”

I gawked at her. “What?”

“You promised that if I kept myself pure, you would marry me. I haven’t been with anyone.”

“You mean you’re still a–?”

“Virgin? Yes.”

“But, I’ve been with several women.”

“I know,” she said.

I stared at her, completely bowled over. I realized that this girl was solid. She was a far cry from the other women I have been with. This one really checked for me. “You’re right,” I said. “I did promise.” I didn’t tell her that it had been a reckless and foolish joke. Instead, I said, “There’s this great restaurant just around the corner when we can have dinner.”

A year later, I married her. It was the best decision I have ever made in my entire life.

Photo by Kirill Palii on

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