Thursday, March 5, 2015

11/2/97

The restaurant was one of my favorites from high school; I wondered if the breadsticks were still as delicious as I remembered.  I wasn’t sure what time they opened for business on a Sunday, but eleven seemed like a safe time.

We were among the few customers that morning.  The after-church lunch rush was an hour away.

I ordered wedding soup to be clever, but also out of necessity.  My stomach couldn’t handle a heavy meal.  I had butterflies about the date, as well as some general queasiness due to the activities of the night before.  He ordered soup, too.

Have you ever noticed that sleep deprivation feels similar to a hangover?  The nausea, the wooziness, the trouble focusing.  Everything is dark around the edges, muddled, a little uneasy.

Glasses of water came and we gratefully drank.  We spent our words already, it seemed.  We had left each other’s company only a few hours ago, just enough for a little sleep and a shower.

I felt twinges of regret and compassion – he had a nine-hour drive ahead of him to be home in time for work the next day.  I was headed back to school, only five hours away.  I could catch up on sleep at my parent’s house in town; he didn’t have that luxury.

My best friend – the bride – thought that her wedding was a perfect time for us to meet.  She and her groom invited him as a friend, but also as a possibility.  Their matchmaking efforts were thoughtful.  When we met I felt like I had known him for a long time already. 

Our meeting was ushered in with declarations of “he’s really cute” and “she’s a lot of fun.”  We were in our early twenties – it doesn’t take much for people that age to be interested.  We trusted their faith in us, and that helped smooth over the awkwardness in the beginning.  We knew there was something there, even before we met.

At lunch, we laughed about taxiing one wedding guest home the previous night, and how I really got my use out of the bridesmaid’s dress I wore until five that morning. Sitting at a table in a floor-length gown at Denny’s with a bunch of rowdy men in tuxedos was an extraordinary Saturday night.

Our soup came, and we ate, gingerly.  Neither of us was up to the task.  I mentally went over our conversations from the wee hours, and it struck me that not many 24-year-old guys I knew spoke of their family with such bare pride and adoration.

It was a wonder my little car hadn’t run out of gas as we sat at the door of his hotel and talked for hours.  We got to know each other at the door of that hotel.

In the subsequent years of our courtship and engagement and even early marriage our family and friends joked, eyebrows waggling, about our use of “talking” as a better, more proper way to describe what really happened between us in the car that night. “Is that what we’re calling it now,” they’d kid.

We sat in that restaurant on our first date, pretending to eat, exchanging glances and smiles, and made plans to see each other again.  We lived in different cities, but they were close enough for weekend visits.  We wanted to make it work despite the distance.

So we did.




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This post inspired by:


Mama’s Losin’ It

Prompt #1: A memorable date.

36 comments:

  1. Awww. I love "how we met" stories and this one is golden.
    Good job, you guys.

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    1. Thank you Shannon. It seems forever ago, but it can't have been - I'm still only 24!! ;)

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    2. This really is golden. I love hearing about how couples met, too. I just wanna hug you now.

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    3. I would love that. Thank you. You ladies are really making me smile this morning.

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  2. Awww you guys.
    How is it you can only still be 24 years old with children that old??

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  3. Oh, friend. I LOVE this. I practically felt the butterflies for you. :)

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    1. That means so much, Keely. Thank you!! It's hard to make such a familiar part of your history - a part of yourself - objective enough to really get the story across. I'm so glad it came through clearly. xoxo

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  4. Tim and I sat in a hotel lobby and talked for HOURS to get to know each other better, on our second or third date. You just reminded me of those few glorious hours. Thank you for sharing this, it's so great to read other stories about how couples met and got to know each other. And you've only gotten better with age! #HAWT

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    1. That's so funny - we live parallel lives, I think. I love hearing 'when we met' stories, too. Thanks for the compliment. You're too kind. xoxo

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  5. That is a great story, Andrea. Long nights just talking with the person you end up with...great times.

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    1. Thanks so much, Lisa! We spent a lot of time on the phone back then... strange now that hardly anyone talks on the phone anymore.

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  6. That is the most adorable first date story...minus the post wedding apocalyptic belly/head goings on...My husband and I had our first date on a pub crawl - yes very romantic. At every bar we fought for a table to sit at so that we could talk - errr scream over the bands playing.

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    1. That's a cute story! Many of our subsequent dates were held in bars, so I get that idea of romance. Most of our pre-married (and married, if I'm being honest) life was spent in one bar or another.

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  7. Great story! My hubby and I spent hours talking on all our dates, too. I should have know then what I was in for!

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    1. Thank you so much! So you two still talk each other's ears off, huh? Lucky couple!

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  8. Thanks for sharing the intimacy of such a sweet story. You two are beautifully yoked.

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    1. Thank you, Laura! What a lovely thing to say. :)

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  9. Now that's what I call a successful date! And now... a nice love story.

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    1. It sure was a success! So far, so good is what I always say. Thanks, Carol!

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  10. Oh, my gosh. You guys have only gotten better with time.~May@AchievingClarity

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    1. Thank you so much! What a nice thing to say. :)

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  11. Is THAT how you met?

    How I looooove this story.

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    1. Yup, that's how we met! Thanks, friend. xoxo

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  12. I love these stories! You guys are the cutest (and most ageless) couple.

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    1. I love that you added the ageless in there. It pretty much made my day - thank you! Now, who's going to tell my aching bones that they need to stop aging?

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  13. How sweet! I know those feelings. It wasn't exactly how my husband and I started, but I do remember an all night date followed by an awkward lunch. Those are fond memories.

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    1. Can you imagine, knowing what you know now, going back to that moment? I'd relive it in a second.

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  14. Most adorable first meeting EVER! And I love the side by side photos!

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    1. Thank you so much! I made sure to use a current photo that hides the eye bags. On both of us. ;)

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  15. What a fun story. I hope you have many more years of happiness. Stopping by from mama kats kelley at the road goes ever ever on

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  16. This is so dear! Thanks for sharing it!

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    1. Thank you, Anna. It's a story I don't ever get tired of telling.

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  17. I love these kinds of stories. Also, can you tell me the secret to reverse aging?

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    1. Very well. The secret to reverse aging is to wear sunglasses in all photos. :) Thanks, friend. xo

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