The story of how I got to the altar started way back at the tender age of five – that’s when I first met my husband. Neither of us have any recollection of this, but since we went to the same local pool and played with the same group of kids in the baby pool, we naturally assume we spent some time during that summer together.
Fast-forward about 10 years: I was in my sophomore year in high school, the hubby was in his junior year. Although we went to the same middle school, we never really interacted until we reached high school when we discovered we had several mutual friends. We spent most of the year on opposite ends of the same lunch table, but rarely speaking to each other. What could we possibly have to say? I was a total band geek and the hubs spent his lunch hour playing Magic with his friends; it seemed like we had nothing in common.
Skip ahead to the end of the school year and the beginning of summer. Before school ended, my best friend convinced me to join Hi-Q (similar to Quiz Bowl if you’re familiar with that; if not, think of it as Jeopardy for high school but played in a team) and informed me the team would be meeting over the summer. I figured it would be something interesting – I was asked to be the point person for all questions relating to Shakespeare and the selected short stories for the year, tasks which appealed to the bibliophile in me – and it would also be a great extra-curricular activity to add to my college applications. At some point during the summer, I was asked to meet the team at the local library so we could all get to know each other and, for the new team members, learn how the competition worked. One very hot day, I walked to the library and joined a small group of people at one of the tables. Some of the team I already knew, the rest were faces I recognized but was not all that familiar with. During the round of introductions, I was informed that the geek who played Magic at the lunch table in middle school was apparently SUPER smart and was the go-to guy for all questions relating to math and science. Oh. And he was the captain of the team. And was apparently pretty nice, because he offered to drive me home after practice (like I said, it was a very hot day).
Moving forward another few months into the fall; I was in the middle of my junior year, he was a senior. We still had mutual friends and we were becoming a little more friendly after our Hi-Q meetings, but still weren’t all that close. October of that year, I threw my younger sister a surprise party and invited all her friends. For some reason, he showed up to the party…even though he wasn’t invited. Apparently, one of my sister’s friends who was invited didn’t have a license and asked my now-hubby to drive him to the party. I was civil; he was not. I may or may not have called him a complete jerk (or something along those lines) for how he acted toward me and other people at the party. I definitely asked him to leave.
I got over his rude behavior (it helped that he apologized) and as the school year progressed, we discovered we had more in common than we thought way back in middle school. We spent a lot of time talking and quickly became friends. Talking about this time of our lives with him later, we both realized we had feelings for each other but were both dating other people at the time. Eventually, we both broke off our relationships with other people and were finally single at the same time just after the start of the new year.
On January 26, 2001, the hubs and I went on our first date. I was 16, he was 18. We went to the movies (we saw “Antitrust”) and to a local restaurant for milkshakes afterward. He brought me a single red rose and kissed me on my front steps when he took me home.
We dated for the rest of the school year, but he broke it off during the summer. It made sense: he was leaving to go to college in another state and I still had to finish my senior year of high school. I don’t want to dwell on how hard that year was for me; we dated other people but would spend time with each other whenever he was in the area. I was always comparing my boyfriends to him; no one came close, I only wanted to be with him. I honestly don’t know what he was thinking about our relationship; I know he spent time with other girls but I have no idea if he ever compared them to me. I asked him about it once, but he believes in leaving the past in the past. Also, he forgets things pretty immediately.
At some point during my senior year, we decided it made sense for us to start seeing each other exclusively again. The rest of the school year and the summer before I left for college are a pleasant blur to me. I remember a lot of late-night conversations and trying to understand his life now that he was a college student. That August, I left for college and was further away from him than I had ever been before. In typical college fashion, I got extremely drunk one evening and was talked into breaking up with him by some well-meaning friends. The next day, I sheepishly took it back.
Adjusting to a long-distance relationship was tough for both of us; we managed, but not without making our share of mistakes. Without dwelling on details (mainly because neither of us can remember the details), we each cheated. We forgave each other and moved on. At one point, I had a crisis and demanded a two-week communication silence. We got past that too. After a few years, I wanted to take the next step in our relationship; except the hubs wasn’t so sure. So we spent a few months in an open relationship but quickly realized we only wanted to be with each other. Unfortunately, this was around the same time the hubby accepted a spot in a master’s program across the country. We decided to continue our long-distance relationship (we had spent four years in separate states; what was a few more years?) and see where it went.
On December 28, 2005, he proposed.
On November 15, 2008, we became husband and wife. And we lived happily ever after.