This time 2 years ago…

Wow. Two years of marriage have gone by FAST.

Gosh. That really was a fun night. A blur, but so fun.

I may be a lame sap, but the truth is really that I love to think and talk about all things Oatmeal. I love remembering all of the little things about how I ended up with him in the first place. At least a few times a week I’ll let my mind go back to the first time I saw him.

But wait, let me back up. I could have met him several times before, but you see dear readers, the time was not yet right. I was a freshman in college when he was on his victory lap. Who knows, maybe we DID cross paths during ’02 and never knew it. My sister had mentioned him a few times, and I’m sure it went something like, “Hey you know if you ever need a guy to carry something up to your dorm for you or something like that, you can call my friend Kelley’s younger brother. He’s still at A&M and their family is so nice, I’m sure he’d be happy to do it.”

But you all know the likelihood of some 18 year old girl calling up a random 23 year old guy she’s never met in order to haul a new bookshelf up 4 flights of stairs. Unlikely.

No, I didn’t meet him in college. It was much later, 6 years later, that we were set up.

You see, I had just broken up with a guy I’d dated since my senior year of college. This guy was no bueno for me, and the entire relationship was really a train wreck. One day when I’ve had enough wine, I’ll blog about that experience and it will both crack you up and horrify you at the same time.

But that’s for another day, the point for now is that for whatever reason I finally decided I had enough. We broke up. We split and stopped talking. I moved into a little one bedroom apartment in the Heights, which was where I was the first time I signed onto myspace, yes, that is correct I just typed myspace. Not even facebook, which would be a little more acceptable. We met on myspace. My big sister and his big sister arranged this virtual meeting. I looked him up and sent him a message that said something like, “Um hi, my sister wants me to say hello to you, so hello.” It went from there.

Every few days we exchanged messages. After several weeks of this silliness, he came out and asked me on a date. He also gave me his phone number, which I called on the day that he happened to be hauling a brand new airstream from Arkansas to Texas. We talked for quite a while, and then he asked me what time he could pick me up for our Sunday brunch date.

He suggested 7am or so.

7am? I laughed at him. I think we settled on 10:30am, but he showed up at 10am. (For the record, he still does all of this early rising business, and I still laugh at him.)

Either way, I was awake at 7am that morning anyway. A little tired and a little hung over from a fun night beforehand, but I was excited/nervous about this little blind date. I still remember putting on my 7 jeans, flat beige sandals, and a sky blue shirt that I’d bought at Em&Lee in Houston just for the occasion. I walked to the computer lab and waited on him to call. I’d given him really vague directions and the agreement was that he’d call when he got into Houston, which was an hour or so from his home. He called early and said he had already taken my exit, meaning I didn’t have time to run back to my apartment and check my hair/makeup one last time. I suddenly got nervous, but there was no time to think about it because he was parking right in front of the computer lab. It was about that time to meet this guy, face to face, and just see what happened.

I walked out of the office door and heard the sound of a diesel engine. He was in his white Dodge work truck, so it was pretty easy to spot him among the other cars. I stepped toward him as he killed the engine and opened the truck door. He walked around the front of the truck, making eye contact with me for just a few seconds and smiling before looking down at his feet as he walked toward me.

I remember looking at him and smiling back, pretending to be relaxed and confident, as if I went on blind dates all the time. Ha.

He was taller than me…. not by much, but it would do. He had on a button down shirt with a light green and blue plaid pattern, and it was tucked into faded jeans. He had on brown leather cowboy boots, but he didn’t look western. He just looked… well, handsome. That word is not a part of my regular vocabulary, but that’s really the only way I could have described him in that moment. Really, really, really handsome. His face was tan and he was clean shaven. He rubbed his hands together before looking up at me and smiling and saying hi. We had that awkward “nice to meet you” hug, and then we had a mini conversation about how easy it was to find my complex. He opened the door for me, I got into the truck, and I perched in the passenger seat and watched him walk back around and get in. When he got back in the truck, we looked at each other and smiled again.

I don’t know why, but this whole scenario is really ingrained in my mind. I hope it’s one of those things that I can still recall even when I’m 90 and have dementia. I can tell this story repeatedly to my great great grandkids and bore them to tears. But really, I can so clearly remember him approaching me, looking down, and remember the way he rubbed his hands together. Why this moment? I dunno. I don’t necessarily believe in love at first sight, but I can tell you that something in me really did light up. And by the end of the date, wow, I was sold. It was over.

These pictures were all taken in the very early days of “us” and include our first trip to College Station as a couple, our “first dance,” a trip to watch Jamie play at Gruene Hall, and the belt he made me for our first Christmas together.

Well, I could continue down memory lane all night, but the truth is that some of these memories are best kept in my own head. Suffice it to say I am so happy. Happy anniversary us. 🙂

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