Taken from the conclusion to The Mia Series:
here’s a little story about the difference between what is for them and what is for you.
Late Night Rendezvous –
A knock came to Mia’s window, startling her awake. But she remained motionless, wondering if an animal had made its way into the bushes just outside the window and was now scratching to get in. But maybe it wasn’t that at all. Maybe it was just something she heard in her dream and it woke her up. That made a little more sense.
Mia closed her eyes and settled back into returning to sleeping. If there was any one thing that the next 24 hours+ would be lacking, it would be rest. So the more sleep she got now, the better it would be. She certainly couldn’t sleep tomorrow night, not on her wedding night – well … at least not until other things happened first. And my, oh my, was she ready.
Yes, sleep was best right now.
Opening her eyes again and sitting straight up, she accepted that sleep wasn’t going to be able to happen just yet because she heard the noise again. And no, it wasn’t some animal scratching or a tree limb tapping the window from being bent by the wind. It was clear, deliberate tapping and now there was a silhouette of someone standing just outside the window.
“Who’s there?” Mia whispered from the bed, grabbing the covers and holding them up in front of her.
“Princess,” she heard a familiar voice say. “Open up.”
“Daddy?” Mia asked, getting out of bed and waddling over to the window.
Opening the curtains, indeed she saw Eric standing there. He was wearing sleeping pants, a t-shirt, a dress suit coat and his slippers.
“Daddy, what are you doing here?” Mia asked, sliding the window open. “I thought the idea in getting separate rooms the night before our wedding was so we wouldn’t see one another until we met at the altar. I mean, isn’t that the way it’s supposed to be done?”
“Mia, when have we ever done things the usual way?” Eric asked, leaning forward and resting his forearms on the window ledge.
“Well, okay. That’s true,” Mia said, lowering her chin and tucking her hair behind her ears.
“You’re cute,” Eric flirted, eyeing up Mia’s appearance and making her blush.
Mia was dressed for bed in one of her short white nighties and her diaper. In her arms were her baby blanket and her teddy bear. The teddy bear held her pacifier, the handle tucked around its left arm paw.
“Daddy, what are you doing here?” Mia asked, pushing beyond the flirting and getting to point. “You know I have to get up early, go to the salon and be a girly girl before we get married tomorrow morning. I have to get my nails filed, have the cuticles fixed, get a new polish, get my hair washed, conditioned, cut, highlighted and styled. Then I have to get my face moisturized, get foundation put on, then bronzer, blush, eye shadow, eye liner, mascara and lip stick. Then I have to get my eye brows brushed and tweezed.”
Eric’s eyes bugged out of his head. And before he could respond, Mia broke out into laughter. It was a running joke between them that Eric would never have the ability to be female for all the upkeep and preparation needed – just to be seen in public.
“Well, then…,” Eric said, extending his hand to her. “It sounds like we don’t have a minute to waste. Come on.”
“Huh? Come on? What do you mean?” Mia asked, taking his offered hand but wondering why he was offering it. “Are we going somewhere?”
“Yes,” Eric answered.
“Where?” Mia asked, looking out the window – still thoroughly confused.
“You’ll see,” Eric answered, encouraging her to climb out the window.
“I know I’ll see, but I’m more worried about other people seeing me,” Mia said with hesitation.
“What would be wrong with that?” Eric asked jokingly.
“Daddy, I’m wearing my nightie and my diaper!” Mia said with whispered exasperation.
“Princess,” Eric said with a deep timbre – laden with that syrupy Daddy Voice he could use to get her to do anything. “Show Daddy what a brave little girl you are. And I promise you, you won’t be disappointed.”
Beginning to fill with tummyflies, Mia lifted her left leg and straddled the window sill as he helped her climb out of the window. Her bare feet touched the ground and she immediately squatted down behind the bushes outside her window. Eric squatted down next to her.
“This is crazy, Daddy,” Mia whispered, peeking through the bushes.
“No, it isn’t,” Eric said sweetly, touching the side of her face with his hand. “It’s perfect.”
Oh my. There was that word, the two-syllable definition of this weekend. And now, Mia was very intrigued as to what was up Eric’s sleeve. Why was he dressed in a suit coat and why the mystery of the moment? Why wouldn’t he just tell her where they were going? And if this late night rendezvous wasn’t crazy, then why did he say it was perfect? What did that mean?
“Here we go,” Eric said, taking her hand and sprinting out from behind the bushes – Mia trying to keep up with crinkly, waddled steps.
Oh, Eric was always spontaneous like this. It was one of many things about him that she loved. He had swept her off her feet, the moment he met. And he kept doing so each day. Even on the night before their wedding, he was still sweeping her away. To where, this time? She had no idea. But what she did know was: No matter where he went, she would certainly follow – now and for the rest of her life.
The night time appearance of the resort’s landscape was peaceful, moonlit and serene. It was … perfect, like everyone and everything had settled in for the night – recharging for the dawn and new day to come. Everyone and everything … except for Eric and Mia, presently. And as they ran through the open grass field, Mia kept looking left and right – wondering if the perfection of the moment was about to change because of a random guest, out for a late night stroll.
Thankfully, there was no one in sight and Mia’s babyish appearance, though still a major risk, was safe from discovery. What a blessing that was for how her body bounced, how her diaper crinkled and how little she felt – all wonderful things, but they were wonderful things she usually did candidly in public or just in private – but not in the middle of an open field at a resort in Vermont.
Just ahead of them was that stone bridge that curved over the man-made stream that rolled through the property in a very picturesque manner in daylight. By the moonlight, it was just as picturesque. When Mia began researching locations for the wedding, it was the picture of that stone bridge, listed on the home page of this resort, that made her investigate further. So, in a sense, the stone bridge played a significant part in bringing them here. And therefore, it was a significant part of what would make this, her wedding weekend, perfect.
They ran up to the one side of the stone bridge and Eric brought their sprint to a screeching halt.
“What?” Mia said, trying to catch her breath. “Why did we stop?”
“We’re here,” Eric said, looking at the bridge and collecting himself.
“We’re at the stone bridge, right,” Mia confirmed with continued bewilderment, still trying to catch her breath. “I don’t understand, Eric. You wanted to bring me to the stone bridge in the middle of the night before the day of our wedding?”
“Yes,” Eric said with a shaky voice, his emotions firmly gripped.
“Why?” Mia asked, making Eric face her as she asked for explanation.
Reaching up to his eyes, she swiped his tears way – the same way he had done this for her on countless occasions before.
“Let’s do this now,” Eric suggested, taking both of her hands in his.
“Let’s do what now?” Mia asked, still completely bewildered at this point.
“Let’s exchange our vows,” Eric said, heartfelt seriousness filling his irises and captivating the gaze they shared.
And suddenly, Mia understood.
“But what about the wedding tomorrow?” Mia asked, her eyes now welling with tears too.
“The wedding tomorrow is for everybody else. It always has been. Yes, it will become our fondest day thus far and it will be perfect,” Eric said, pausing to swallow a lump in his throat before continuing. “But tonight, right here and right now, this is for us and us alone.”
Then he reached up and swiped away her tears. Mia smiled brightly behind wateriness. What a sweet gesture and a furthermore, what a perfect one.
“Okay,” she whispered, barely audible for how emotional she had just become.
“Okay,” Eric said, putting her into position on the one side of the bridge – taking her baby blanket and draping it over her head like a wedding veil.
He pulled it back away from her face and gave her a shawl-covered look like that of Maid Marian. He then took his slippers off and skipped his way through the small stream to get to the other side, Mia practically weeping with laughter at his silliness as he got into position on the other side of the bridge. Then they both took a moment to collect themselves before they began walking up to meet one another at the center of the bridge.
Mia took one step forward with her right foot, bringing her left foot up to meet it. Then she took one step forward with her left foot, bringing her right foot up to meet the other one. For weeks now, she had been practicing this processional stroll and it was probably the reason why she was able to have such grace, earlier that night at the rehearsal. But there was no greater and more important moment to walk perfectly than the present. Eric was right. Tomorrow truly was for everyone else. She hadn’t seen it that way until this very instant. Yes, she would still get her perfect wedding memories, but the memories of this weekend that would stay with her and within her for the rest of her life, were the memories they were about the make on that stone bridge.
Coming to the center of the bridge, they joined hands. Her heart was pounding so heavily that she had to shift the balance of her frame onto her left leg, locking her knees to stay upright. But Eric, as always, was a rock … her Daddy rock.
“Mia Grace Archer, I didn’t know, on the day I met you, that I would love you forever,” Eric said, Mia tilting her head in confusion.
What kind of vows were these?
“I knew before I met you that, if we ever did meet, it would be the beginning of a lifetime,” Eric continued, Mia softening before him.
These wouldn’t be traditional vows, but rather, they would be so much more.
“You give me a purpose I never had in my life, reason to be as much as I can be. And in doing so, you give me a passion that drives me forward and makes me want to be needed, to be relied upon and to be trusted,” Eric said, pausing to collect himself – Mia feeling the same way. “Much like this very spot where we stand right now, you are the keystone of us – not just the keystone of me. It is because of you and through you that anything gets done, that anything has ever happened. And it isn’t because you have to have your way. It’s because you know your way. And most people don’t know that about themselves, what they want or where they want to go. I didn’t, not until I met you.”
Mia reached down to the left arm of her teddy bear, taking her pacifier off its paw and putting it between her lips before returning her hand to him. Eric smiled, Mia reaching up and brushing away his newest set of tears before he continued.
“You give meaning to moments that otherwise would have been meaningless. And you bring greater meaning to moments that already had significance. You make everything so much better than it was before. You make everything … perfect,” Eric said, Mia starting to well with tears at the sound of that word – Eric reaching up to her face and brushing away her newest set of tears before continuing. “Perfection isn’t just what you want in this weekend. It is what you want for every second of your life. You never settle for something that isn’t right for you. And because of this, you always find the essence of all that is rightly meant to be termed as forever. You chose to marry me. The fact that you said yes, tells me that I am good enough for you. And that is now the essence of me.”
The emotions, the sentiments and everything he was saying to her were striking at the center of her heart, fulfilling her in a way that she had always sought to find – hoping that, one day, she would mean enough to someone to be spoken to in such a manner.
“I feel your love when I hug you, when I touch you. I taste it when I kiss you and hear it when you whisper to me,” Eric said, squeezing her hand a little more tightly. “When you flirt with me, I become alive inside. And you definitely have the effect on me that a girl is supposed to have on a guy. Job well done.”
Mia chuckled for a moment behind her pacifier.
“Making love to you has been better than I could’ve possibly imagined it to be,” Eric said softly. “And believe me, when I first saw you at the Jukebox that night we met, I will admit that my head went there almost instantly. From a distance, you dazzle and up close, you do so much more.”
Mia started nursing on her pacifier a little more slowly, that reminder of their month of abstinence becoming fresh in thought and in sensation.
“And then there’s the dynamic,” Eric said, Mia shifting in her stance – her diaper crinkling as she knew what the rest of these rendezvous vows were going to do to her mind, her senses, her heart and her soul. “You are the BabyGirl that any Daddy would be lucky to call his own. But you know that not just any Daddy is right for you. Having chosen me gives me further reason to breathe. When I bathe you, I see you stripped naked – not just physically but in every other conceivable way. When I feed you, when I hold your hand and guide you through fear, I see your strength, allowing yourself to be so fragile – just so you can be made stronger.”
Mia took in a chest-full of air through her nose and exhaled it back out. Eric was delving right to the center of her now, challenging her belief that she wasn’t a very strong individual at all.
“And then there’s the diapers,” Eric said, a grin forming on his face as Mia’s eyes glazed over – knowing he was going to the only place inside her that hadn’t been touched yet – her regressive soul. “You always fidget. You always fuss. But you always allow Daddy to put you where you belong. And you are adorable as a little diaper girl – making noise no matter where you waddle, making excuses when you need to be changed but don’t want to be changed, flirting with the danger of discovery and so much more when we go places and always being willing to be little. Daddying you is nothing shy of perfection itself. And a lifetime of being your Daddy will redefine what perfect means. I guarantee it.”
Mia stood speechless, breathless and affected, wanting to reply but waiting to see if there was more to come.
“The End,” Eric said, confirming her unspoken question. “Or should I say: The Beginning?”
Mia lowered her chin slightly, taking the pacifier out of her mouth and returning it to her teddy bear’s left paw. How could she possibly hope to equal the vows he just stated? Was there even a chance? Eric had always been the one who was good with words, not her. She knew how she felt, the depths of such and all, but she could never say how she was feeling unless eternally gripped with a single emotion – like love or anger or glee or frustration. It wasn’t as easy for her as thinking about it and then saying it. But if there was any one moment in life when she needed to open her mouth and just let it all pour out, no matter how jumbled and confusing as it sounded to her, it would be now … on that bridge and at the beginning of her wedding day.
“Eric Michael Young,” Mia said with a soft and shaky tone, pushing herself through the fear of not knowing what to say. “I love you. That may be the only thing I will say that will be easy. But I want you to know that, even though I can’t always find the words to say how I’m feeling, that I do feel deep love for you – like I never knew how to love someone before you. And I know that you know that, but I had to say it again anyway. And you know this about me, too. If by now, you don’t know it, you never will.”
Mia fidgeted in her stance, searching hard for the comfort of knowing she was sounding sincere because she truly was being sincere.
“I’m affectionate. This is something else you know. But before I begin to gush with girly happiness, there has to be a reason. And the reason for my affection is you. You give me the one thing any girl in this world craves, probably more than anything else … attention. Sometimes, I want attention because I want to hear you say nice things about me. Sometimes, I want it because I’m feeling needy. Sometimes, I want it and I don’t even know why. But no matter what my reasons are … you’ve always given me more attention than I could have ever asked for,” Mia said, pausing as a stream of tears poured out of her eyes faster than Eric could react to swipe them away. “I need to be needed. I want to be wanted. I love to be loved and I cherish being cherished. And I have felt all of those things because of you and from you. I don’t think you ever give yourself credit for how kind you are, how nice you are and how wonderful you are.”
Mia stopped to collect herself for a second, then looking back up at Eric to see streams of tears pouring from his eyes, too. And neither of them was going to wipe those tears away, at this point. Seeing this only made Mia weep harder, but, affected with purpose, she took in a deep breath and pressed forward with her vows.
“You are not only good enough for me, but you meet my needs and I know you always will. And I love you for that. I’m important enough to be that important to you and I promise you I will never take that for granted, though I will get demanding at times. I guess I’ll always be that way,” Mia said, pausing again to collect herself.
This wasn’t easy for her at all. Seeing her angst, Eric lifted her hands up and kissed the back of them, giving her encouragement to continue. Mia looked at him and felt warmth inside. No, it didn’t eliminate her trepidation of the moment, but it took the edge off her nerves. This was the same thing Eric always did for her, when she needed it most and even when she didn’t need it at all.
“I love the feeling of your hands when they touch me. I love what you smell like, even when you stink,” Mia said, grinning for the first time since she began speaking. “Your presence always soothes me. And even when I’m not right next to you, in bed or wherever, you remain in my thoughts which means you influence my decisions and that means that every step I take I somehow affected by you.”
Mia smiled brightly. How true that was. Eric did remain inside her at all times. And the words were starting to come out of her more easily. The truth had a way of making that happen.
“Every day, there are subtle little reminders of you all around me,” Mia said with another smile at the sweetness of her own thought. “When I’m at work, I’ll hear someone say a phrase or a sentence and they’ll use word choices that you would use. And I’ll think of you.”
Shrinking her shoulders at the ever-diminishing nervousness, Mia thought of other examples of when she was reminded of him. She was really starting to enjoy these rendezvous vows.
“I smell your cologne in the air in different places and I’ll stop walking to look around and see if you’re there. But no one is there. And I’ll start thinking of you,” Mia said with yet another smile. “Commercials on TV make me think of you. Maybe it’s a restaurant we’ve been to that’s being advertised or a TV show we like or something you bought me, like … diapers.”
Mia covered her face with embarrassment from the admission she just made. But it seemed that, no matter what she said, it was all ringing true – even in her owns ears, for a change.
“I love when you make me feel little on the inside and I love being in your care. I love feeling like I’m the only responsibility in your life that matters. I love how you spoil me, but I also love how you keep my feet on the ground, when I need them to be,” Mia said with a growing littleness beginning to come out in her voice, her disposition and the gaze in her eyes. “I love bringing you happiness and I love being your BabyGirl. And when you tell me that you’re proud of me, my world becomes you.”
Tummyflies began a complete three-act waltz inside her as regression began to take her over fully.
“When I’m embarrassed, you coax me through it but you never tell me that I shouldn’t feel that way. You always allow me to make the decision for myself,” Mia said, her shoulders really starting to shrink up now. “When I’m fussy, you are so patient with me – even when I’m all worked up about something that is only important to me. You never make me feel stupid for being difficult. At the same time, you never encourage me to be difficult. And that is the grounding I truly need at those moments in life.”
Mia paused, looking up at him – thinking of the final and perhaps most important rendezvous vow of all.
“You have always believed in me and you have always shown me the worth I had that I couldn’t see in myself,” Mia said, reaching up and wrapping her arms around his neck – now holding her teddy bear behind him. “And for that, I will love you always … Daddy.”
Then she stood up on her tippy toes and kissed him, Eric placing his left hand under her diapered bottom and his right hand behind her back and he pressed her against him.
“When did you think of doing this late night vow thing?” Mia asked, breaking the kiss for a moment.
“The moment I sat next to you at The Jukebox the night I met you,” Eric answered, smiling before they continued the kiss.
And in a few hours, their wedding day would begin. It would be perfect … guaranteed.
Also read: “The Perfect Day“
The Mia Series (Book Ten): Her Wedding Weekend