Ducks In A Tub

Taking life's adventures one day at a time.

Tuesday, October 10, 2006

How we met - the romance story

It all began on a cold and rainy night in January 2002. Well, actually, I don’t remember if it was rainy…or cold for that matter…but it did start in January. Yes, that evening I was feeling lonely, mostly because my mother had started to tease me about how long it had been since my last date. I hadn’t had a boyfriend for a year, so it had been a while since a strong arm held me and gave me a shoulder to lean on. My mom saw an ad in a newspaper for a singles website and she teased me that maybe I ought to try it. Well, I’d show her! I couldn’t take the taunts any longer and I did something that I thought was an act of desperation, although it ended in the best possible result. I signed up for an online dating service.
After five months of going on a date here and a date there without experiencing any chemistry, I got into contact with Christian. He lived in the same county as I did and we began exchanging emails. It was only a couple of days before he asked where I worked. I told him the name of the company and was completely shocked when I received a phone call a few hours later from a man named Chris who said that he had been enjoying our email conversation of the last few days. You can imagine my surprise while I am sitting at my desk, in my office, expecting a client to be on the other end of the phone. It took me a few seconds to gather my thoughts and place the name (I didn’t immediately grasp the nickname), and then it hit me – this guy I was emailing had looked up the phone number for my company! At first I thought, “Okay, this is a little creepy. I’m not ready for this.” But then I thought that it showed initiative and was a sign of a guy who knows what he wants.
It was a short phone call and Chris asked if he could come meet me. It turns out that his office was only 3 blocks from my office! He came over later in the afternoon and during that brief, awkward visit we exchanged phone numbers. I have a rule that guys are supposed to make the first move. So, naturally, I expected Chris to call me that evening, or the next day, to ask me on a date. I didn’t get a call. My head told me to let him go, obviously he wasn’t that interested or he would have pursued me. My gut, on the other hand, told me that there was something about him worth going after. So, I broke my own rule and called him on the third day.
Quite honestly, we had a rocky start to our relationship. I expected “Mr. Right” to sweep me off my feet with his charming and chivalrous ways. Chris was not unrefined, on the contrary he was well-spoken, energetic and funny, but he definitely needed some tweaking in the romance department. For example, during our first phone call (when I broke my rule and called him) Chris asked me if I would like to go to lunch with him that day. I was interested, so I said, “Sure, when do you want to pick me up?” It was then that he told me his car was in the shop and if I wanted to go out then I would have to pick him up. I wasn’t ready to give up my old fashioned ideals that easily, so I told him to let me know when his car was done and he could come get me for a proper date. Just a few days later we arranged our first date. He let me pick the place and we had a wonderful time at a local dinner theater.
That first date went unbelievably well. In my experience, first dates have always been uncomfortable. Whether I’ve known the guy previously or not, it’s the first time I’m with someone and have an expectation for romance. There was hardly a moment of discomfort on that first date with Chris. Even though it was only our second meeting and we had never really spoken much (our phone calls were pretty short), there was no shyness on either side. We just jumped right into conversation and there seemed to be an unending supply of subjects to discuss. We both came from large families. We had similar high school experiences. We are the same religion. We even knew many of the same people because our different high school circles intersected frequently. Imagine sitting at a table with someone whom you have never met in your life and finding out that they know half the same people as you. There was an immediate connection.
Our relationship progressed rapidly. Before that first meeting ended we had already set up our next date. It was not long (about two weeks) before we were seeing each other almost every day and Chris became a regular dinner guest at my parents’ house. Within a month we were in love with each other, and by two months we were talking about marriage.
We met in May, at the end of my junior year of college. That summer we had the best time of our lives going to baseball games, museums, movies, walking on the beach, seeing concerts, and more. When school started again our activities lessened, but since Chris was working on his master’s degree we just amended our outings around both of our homework loads. Our typical day involved work and school for both of us, then dinner with my family, followed by a few hours of studying side-by-side, and wrap it up with a pleasant evening stroll or going out for a late night drink. We would study at my house (I lived at home with my parents) and my mom used to make sarcastic comments that we needed to liven up the relationship. I guess it was pretty strange to see a couple of in love 20-somethings sitting around reading books and writing papers instead of out enjoying themselves.
On the one-year anniversary of our first date, Chris proposed. His romantic side had greatly improved since our first meeting. For this special occasion, he took me to the same beach that we walked on after our first dinner date, got down on one knee and said those magic four words I had dreamed of hearing since I was a little girl: “Will you marry me?”
Eight months and one day after his romantic question, I said “yes” again in front of 200 family members and friends. Now we have two beautiful children and we hope to have many more. My sister is now engaged to a man that she met off the very same website that brought Chris and I together. She was inspired by our success, and now has her own happy ending. And it all started with the internet…
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