They say that love will find you when you least expect it. I didn't believe them.
Four years of college almost over and nothing more than a few dates with a few guys and some talking. Nothing ever went anywhere. High school had ended with much of the same, except instead of dates, they were at least boyfriends. But does it really count when nothing ever lasted for more then three months? If I said that thinking something was wrong with me never crossed my mind, I'd be lying. My mom told me that it was because I was the marrying kind, not the dating kind. Smart woman.
Then at the beginning of spring semester senior year a friend/sorority sister suggested that I meet her best guy friend. This wasn't the first mention, but I had already forgotten that she had wanted me to bring said guy as my semi-formal date in the fall. I said no and opted to go alone because he had just broken up with his long term girlfriend. Formals aren't much fun if your date is hurt, brooding and pissed off at the female kind, which is what I assumed his mindset would be after a breakup.
I wasn't very interested in this second attempt at matchmaking. There were four more months until graduation and my biggest concern, at that point, was what I was going to do with my life. Why on earth would I spend the time and energy getting to know someone new when it would all end the moment after the cap and gown came off and my tiny car left my little college town behind?
But my friend got my roommates involved. Soon he started showing up at the places I hung out. The first time I saw him in person and not just in facebook photos was at a party at my house. He was a bright red hat in a sea of mostly sorority girls. We were never introduced. And we didn't talk to each other. But I could hear him nearby talking to other people while I stood near my kitchen sink chatting with friends. Then he showed up at my sorority little sister's house one night. This time it was a much smaller group of people. Five or six, I think. Still no formal introduction. There wasn't any one on one interaction, but I remember making fun of his accent.
I'm not exactly sure when, but soon after that we started chatting online. It was around my birthday/Valentine's Day that he began to express interest (to our friend) in wanting to ask me out on a date. Maybe in the next few weeks, was my reply. I had been on a few first-ish dates around Valentine's Day before and they always ended up awkward. Add a birthday to the mix and it's just too much pressure (in my opinion).
Well, today marks four years since our first date (and three months until our wedding!). I remember exactly what I wore - jeans, a pink tank top and an aqua sweater. I picked the restaurant and then forgot how to get there (and since this was pre-smartphone days, neither one of us could look up the directions). We were two (almost) strangers, aimlessly driving around a city 30 minutes from where we attended school, trying to get our bearings. Luckily we eventually made it, albeit late for our reservation. Surprisingly, though, there was no awkwardness (aside from first date nerves) - not during the long car ride, not during dinner. We shared a bottle of wine and got to know each other.
That night was the beginning of a wonderful thing. It was the beginning of a relationship spanning four years, four states, many moves, two grad schools, two jobs, one crazy roommate, an amazing engagement, lots of memories, smiles, laughter, stress and tears. It was the beginning of me realizing that they are right - love does find you when you least expect it.
Happy four years to my soon to be husband. The first four were wonderful and I have no doubt that, between now and forever, the rest will be wonderful, too.