We told ourselves that we "only" had to wait until the following May to see each other, because Rey was planning to try to get another work visa for the summer of 2006. However, with the task of getting through another week seeming un-doable... we really couldn't imagine how we'd tackle the 7 months between visits.
And then Rey was denied his visa. And put on restriction for a year. He would not be able to apply for a visa during that year. We were completely devastated. We had no idea when we'd be able to see each other again.
A bright memory in that year (among many) was the romantic way Rey celebrated my birthday.
I was at work that day in June, trying to keep my mind off the fact that Rey wasn't there. He had called me first thing in the morning, and that was enough--right?
Around noon, I was called to the front office. As I walked in, a girl with a bunch of flowers in her hand asked me if I was Liz. I said yes, and she gave me the flowers. At the same time, someone ran in and took my picture, laughing. I was a little confused. Then I read the card in the flowers, "Wish I was there. Rey."
Then, I had to take a moment to get my composure! The lady taking my picture (the lady Rey stayed with the summer of '04) had been Rey's accomplice. He'd sent her money asking her if she could order flowers sent to my work... And could she take pictures of how I looked when I got them?
I looked a wee bit happy.
But, it wasn't just flowers. He also sent me a bulky envelope full of cards. 7 cards. One for each day of my "birthday week". They were all sweet, romantic cards--each with bits of a poem he'd written about us. At the end of the week, I could put together all the pieces and read the whole poem, which was long!
He called it, "Our Story, made Poetry"
(Keep in mind, he wrote it in Spanish... it rhymed...) ;)
"How did this story begin?
No one really can know,
It was God's grace
That allowed us to meet...
After God created each of us
He was pleased to see what He'd done
One heart He'd placed there, and the other
He placed there....
When these two hearts met
They began to wonder what was happening.
They'd scarcely met, yet could feel
That they already loved each other.
It was God's hand at work.
He had brought them together
He had His plans...
When they were together,
Every moment was beautiful.
But, they all came to an end.
God had other plans,
Which would bring them
Sadness, tears and joy
And would test their faith.
In the Lord they have found
Strength, faith, hope
And the greatest reward they have received
Love! The most beautiful and
Pure love ever known
The perfect prize
That God gives in exchange for their patience!
Now these two hearts find themselves apart
But even at a distance, they love each other
God is with Him
And they cry out for His love...
My love, do you know how much I love you?
When will that long-awaited day arrive??
I do not know.
But, while time passes, I will wait on the Lord.
Yes, patiently I will wait.
He will hear my cry.
As you can imagine, those cards got more than one reading during those long months. And it was not to be the dreaded 7 months we had originally moaned about.
It would be another 15 months.