TGIF: The Flying Mattress and The Boy Who Left Home For Me


On Lady and the Tramp, Judge Judy holograms and my hardcore family.

In some parallel universe, engaged couples wear preppy J. Crew outfits, eat spaghetti Lady and the Tramp-style and ride their powder-blue vintage bikes into the glowing sunset.

Alas, my fiancé Kupa and I do not live in this universe.

Okay, I lie. [clears throat] The one time we did make spaghetti, it is possible that we engaged in a little L&T … [avoids eye contact]

For me, being engaged has not been about shopping for wedding dresses, playing house at IKEA, love-dovey Instagram pictures or baby unicorns. Though it has been the sweetest season of my relationship with Kupa, it has also been the hardest.

One moment, I’m daydreaming names for the adorable (unborn) spawn of my smart, hilarious, piano-playing cutie. The next, I’m in a cold war with said cutie, looking out of a car window, jaw clenched tight, tears streaming down my face.

You see, all of a sudden, Kupa and I have to make big decisions–some weekly, some daily. Many of  these decisions have huge implications on our careers, finances, families and friends. I sometimes wish a Judge Judy hologram would magically appear to give us the final verdict.

This past weekend Kupa and I  deployed our first big decision as a couple. As early as our second date, we knew that location was going to be a tricky topic for us. Kupa lived in Seattle and I lived in Vancouver. After months of prayer, discussion and weighing the pros and cons, we felt starting our life in Canada would be best for us.

Bottom line: Kupa made the sacrifice to leave Seattle and move to Vancouver. For me. #epicgestureoflove

The “Big Move” happened last weekend. It was a comedy of errors. Everything that could possibly have gone wrong, went wrong.

Here’s a random list:

–      Kupa and I had different ideas for how to pack up his apartment. This led to a heated “discussion” on Friday night.
–      Saturday morning, my sister (packing guru) and brother-in-law (BIL) got stuck in an epic border line-up.
–      U-Haul refused to rent us a trailer because of a class-action lawsuit in the nineties, over defective Firestone tires on Ford Explorers. BIL’s winsome steed? A Ford Explorer Sport Truck. What the frap???!!!
–       Trailer-less, we attempt to load everything into our three vehicles. Despite our best efforts, we were one car short, adding another four-hour round trip to the move.
–       Minutes after our three-vehicle caravan entered the highway, the mattress strapped to the top of our minivan started to flip up in the wind.
–       We pulled over, two cars making the exit in time, one getting lost and separated.
–       As we turned into a Home Depot parking lot to secure the mattress, our minivan was rear-ended by a distracted driver.
–       Our first attempt to secure the renegade mattress failed and so we went to a Walmart to buy a ratchet.
–       Take #1: ratchet straps get tangled. Customer service line-up to exchange our purchase: 20 mins.
–       Take #2: ratchet anchors get mangled.
–       We eventually secured the mattress with a rope and the caravan resumed on the highway. Our trailer/mattress/mild crash fiasco had thrown us off schedule.
–       Distress phone call: The storage facility was closing at 7 pm. It was 6:10pm and we were more than an hour away.
–       We burned rubber up the I-5 highway arriving at the storage facility at 7:01pm. We looked up at the sign and it said CLOSED.

Now, here’s what I remember about our crazy weekend:

–       My heated discussion with Kup on Friday night ended in hugs.
–       Our “little” brothers got to spend quality time with each other.
–       Border line-ups or not, my sister and BIL showed up for me. They always do.
–       That ridiculous flying mattress brought us closer as a family.

I remember the melting McDee’s Ice Cream, the Rolo McFlurry and the Mango Smoothie we inhaled in the parking lot as we wrestled with the mattress on top of the minivan.

I remember arriving in Surrey, exhausted and relieved. I remember Ma and Pa directing traffic as we unloaded Kupa’s American life into our Canadian garage.

I remember sitting with family at the kitchen table sharing naan, butter chicken and spicy fish masala. When compared to butter chicken, I think the masala just tastes better. I remember opening Kup’s prized bottle of Ledson Bellisimo and toasting its contents at 11 p.m. I remember the warm brownies and vanilla ice cream we had for dessert. Sweet baby Jesus!

I’ll never forget how my family showed up for me and Kupa last weekend. Despite the many setbacks, it turns out we are a pretty great team. We hustle when flying mattresses hit the fan–or threaten to blow out into the highway. We welcome the loves of each other’s lives with sore arms, strained backs, grunts up flights of stairs and sweat-mustache-laced laughter.

But what I’ll remember most from last weekend, is heading back to Seattle with Kupa on Sunday. We loaded his last few belongings into his car and cleaned up the apartment. It was finished. And so were we. With all the furniture gone, we sat arm in arm on the freshly vacuumed  floor, in a final moment of silence.

Staring, misty-eyed, into the distance, he sighed and said, “You’re the girl I left home for,” before burying his face into my shoulder.


This is what I’ll remember most: the boy who left home. For me.

Ahhh dear ones … super meta post. I know.

  1. Any stories about your rockstar family coming through?
  2. Married friends: Any advice for this “cleaving” newbie?

Love you more than Avocado and Goat Cheese with Lime on Toast,

To read more TGIFs from Tina: Click here.