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How I met my wife, the mother of my children

September 7, 2013

In this post I go back to the beginning…like, seriously, way far back.

My wife and I met in High School (told you it was way far back).  It was the end of April, 1994.  I was a junior, she was a freshman.  I had just turned 17, she was 15.  My high school had freaks, geeks, gangstas, preppies, jocks, etc.  I was amongst the freaks. I had long hair and a long goatee, dressed all in black and listened exclusively to heavy metal.    I was also extraordinarily silly.  I was very much a goofball.

I had female friends (I was the one who would listen to how awful their boyfriends were while secretly thinking “but, I’m nice, you should date me”).  But, I was always very shy when approaching new girls.  So when the second semester of French started and I saw this really cute girl always sitting in the hall doing her homework…wearing heavy metal t-shirts….I did nothing.

I HATED French, but the 2 days a week I got to catch a glimpse at this heavy metal shirt wearing cutie were the highlight of my week.  Months went by, and I never said a word  to her (too nervous) and never even found out her name.  I had a female friend in French class who would egg me on every day, she even threatened to do it for me.  Yet…I did nothing.

Amazingly, I never once saw this girl outside of that hallway.  I hung out with the freaks, but she was more likely with the theater/music nerds.   Our paths just never crossed.

Finally, one day I saw her in “the commons” which is wear the freaks hung out at lunch…my turf, and courage welled up from within.  I pushed may way through a crowd of people, jutted my hand out in front of me and said these romantic words: “Hi, I’m Jack.”

Equally romantic she responded: “Umm.  Ok.  I’m Carey.”  Not exactly an auspicious start.

After that, though, I made my interest clear to my group of friends who helped me invade her group of friends and I was able to make some chance meetings happen.  It took a few weeks of me pouring on the sweet and helping her get over a bad relationship before she seemed ready to become my girlfriend.

I wanted to make it official.  In my friend’s mom’s kitchen, I got on one knee and further showed off my romantic chops by saying: “I wanted to get a rose, but I have no money at all.  But, Carey, will you be my girlfriend?”  She agreed.  She probably cried.  Her family does that, cry when they are happy.

We then became that sickening high school couple that said insanely adorable things to each other, wrote notes every period, saw each other every day (Carey had a calendar in which she marked every day that she saw me).  I wrote her love notes (and hid them around her room), wrote her love songs and even made a mixed tape of me singing songs I made up, like “Here’s a little diddy about Jack and Careeeey.”  Thankfully, I forget the rest.  I even teared up when she left for Florida for a week, which was before text messaging.  So I slipped her friend notes to give her daily from me (you puking yet?)

So anyway, the rest….is a reeeeeally long and fulfilling history full of ups and downs and curvy roads.

The reason I wrote this is because I frequently think about how I would react at one of my daughters bringing home a boy that looked like me, who was 17 to my daughter’s 15 and they started spending all of their time together.  Had I not LIVED our success story, I think I’d be full-on “Oh heeell no!”

To the credit of all our parents (our parents are all divorced, so we had lots of parents), they trusted us a great deal.  Apart from one period where we were limited to only 2 days a week of seeing each other, there were very few issues.  I am sure nobody imagined that we’d still be together with a houseful of kids 19 years later (even we didn’t dare imagine that far out).    Yet, here we are.

Luckily I am a long way off from my kids having their first real loves but I hope that I can trust them the way our parents trusted us.  It’ll also be important for us to remember that our story is not typical and that we should expect our kids to have many failed relationships…and we shouldn’t judge.

I love origin stories.  How did you meet your significant other?

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  1. Part of my wife’s and my “origin story” of 33 years ago is here:

    Thanks for sharing your story. And because I think every good marriage probably “is a reeeeeally long and fulfilling history full of ups and downs and curvy roads,” I’ve started a sappy project with which I hope to surprise my wife on our next anniversary. I’d love to have you or your readers contribute, if you happen to have a song that is particularly meaningful to you:

    • That is a terrific idea. I’ll definitely noodle a bit and post something over there. I am sure she’ll cherish that forever.

      • Well, I hope she will. Unlike me, she’s an introvert who didn’t even have a Facebook profile until recently. But I figure it will give us something to help remember some of our best moments when we get senile (or if, God forbid) one of us dies before the other. Thanks.

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