Saturday, July 28, 2007

How I Met My Knight

I don't remember this, but we met wayyyyyyy back in first grade. We were in the same class and we "liked" each other. I know this because YEARS after we got married, my mom found a box with mementos from my childhood. In this box, was a construction paper that was cut in the a shape of a fish. It was decorated and colored. On the back of the fish, a note was written. "love" and my Knight's first name. In this box was also a Christmas Recital bulletin. Written on this bulletin were the names of all the first grade students. My Knight and I had the same teacher. In our class there were no other students with my Knight's name. He has an uncommon last name. At the end of the year, we moved away to a different part of Miami.

I was a sophomore in 1978-1979. I had signed up for a class. Turned out that the class was over booked. They picked four students from my class and moved them to the new College Vocabulary class. I was one of the four students picked from my class. Turns out that the same thing happened to a blue eyed boy. He was one of the students picked from his class to be moved to the new College Vocabulary class.

Background: I have always felt a little uncomfortable looking at people in the eye. Back then I didn't know why I felt that way, but now I know why. The eyes are a window to your soul. You can see what they feel and think. Being that I was shy and a little bit of an introvert, I didn't want people to "see me". I just wanted to blend in and not stand out.

The first day in my new class, I quickly went in and sat in the first seat I saw available. I noticed that in the row next to me, a couple of seats ahead was a boy who kept slightly turning his head to look at me. He had the most beautiful blue eyes I had ever seen. He'd turn away when I would look and I would turn away when I noticed him looking. That's how it all began... with a glance.

One day after class as I was walking down the hall, I felt a tap on my shoulder. It was "him", the boy with the deep blue eyes. He told me he was a DJ. (* note- more on this later) and wondered if I'd like to go to a party he was going to be working at. I told him, I'd have to ask my parents. He handed me a paper (which I still have), with the address and his phone number. I gave him my phone number too. *note-During his high school years, he was a disc jocky. Which is a little hard to believe, because he was so quiet. It was a little out of character for him to be a DJ, but he loved music.

Background: My dad was very old fashioned. He didn't believe in having boyfriends. You could have friends that were boys, but no "boyfriend". We were allowed to go out with groups of friends ONLY if my mom went along with us.

I asked for permission to attend the party. It was given. The blue eyed boy asked me what time he could pick me up. I told him I'd meet him there. Poor thing, he had no clue what he was getting into. Since I wasn't allowed to go on dates, not only did I show up with my mom, but my sister and three girlfriends came along. Remember, my parents didn't believe in exclusive relationships. The only way I was allowed to go out was in a group and chaperoned. I'm sure he was shocked, but he didn't show it. He was glad I went. Our first dance was a slow dance. The song was, How Deep Is Your Love by The Bee Gees. A couple of weeks later, I invited him to a party my family was invited to. We had a great time. We hung around the same group of friends, but we kept our distance.

At the end of our senior year, the blue eyed boy was having a graduation party, or so I thought. He invited me. I was unable to attend. I ended up being hospitalized. I had been having recurring fainting spells. So they were running tests. Once I got out from the hospital, I called him to say I was sorry I missed his party. His mom answered and told me he had joined the Army. The party was a going away party. My heart sank. I thought I'd never see him again.

A week later on November 4, 1981, I received a letter. It was a letter from the blue eyed boy. He had called his mom to see how they were all doing. His mom mentioned that I had called. When he hung up with her, he called his best friend. He asked him to go to his (the blue eyed boy's) home and look for his yearbook. You see, I had signed his yearbook and had included my phone number and address. I don't know why I put that in there. I hadn't done that for any one else, only his. This letter, was the first of many letters. And so began our courtship. We really got to know each other through our letters. We were able to share our hearts. We felt free to say things that I know that we wouldn't have said if we were face to face. I knew that he was the one for me.

He had a two week leave in December 1981. I met his family for the first time when my mom and I went to greet him at the airport. We all know that there is something about a man in uniform. BUT when I saw my blue eyed boy, walking towards us in his uniform, he took my breath away. He spent most of his time with me and my family. But he made sure he spent time with his family too. During his leave, we went to the movies together for the first time. He took me to see Cinderella. After the movie, we went for a walk on the marina. That's were we kissed for the first time. When his leave was up, it was hard to watch him leave.

He finished basic training in February 1982. He had leave for a couple of days, so he came home to visit. Once again, he spent most of his time with me and my family. But he always made time for his family too. This time when he left, it was even harder. We didn't know when we'd see each other again. I wrote to him every day, sometimes I even wrote to him twice a day. He was able to call me every Saturday. Needless to say, I was always waiting for his call.

One Saturday in April 1982, the man of my dreams had asked me to marry him. I said yes, without even talking to my parents. He didn't want us to wait any longer, would two months (June 1982) be too soon? Looking back, I don't know how it was done. My mom and Abuela planed a wedding for over 500 guest in less than 2 months. I trusted them to plan our wedding. I picked out my dress, my Knight's tux, the bridesmaid dressed, the best man's tux, all the usher's tux's, the flowers, the color scheme, the invitations and the cake. Oh, we had 12 in our wedding party. Everything else, my mom and Abuela did. I was the most stress free bride ever! Well, except for when the priest wouldn't allow us to change our wedding date for the third time. My Knight was having trouble getting his leave accepted. So when we had to have changed for the third time, the priest said that we were treating marriage as if it were a joke. He refused to change it... UNTIL my dad made a "donation" to the church. The time and date was picked... 3:30p on June 19, 1982

Saturday, June 19,82, I woke up to a lot of commotion. I, on the other hand was very calm. I had such a peace... a happy peace. My sister went off to get her nails done. My parents were busy packing up the car and taking last minute things to the reception hall. I was left alone at home to get myself ready. As the time drew near, I was dressed and ready to go, but my dad hadn't even gotten ready. My sister had left with my mom and my brother. I was all dressed up, sitting down and watching Star Trek with the limo driver, while my dad was patiently getting ready. We arrived at the church almost an hour late. The priest had already gone up to the rectory and said he wasn't going to marry us. My dad went up to see him. He made another "donation" to the church. He came down and married us. My Knight and I have joked that my dad had to pay to get me off of his hands.

We had a one day honeymoon at the Fontainebleau in Miami. My Knight had to report back to duty on Monday. So we had to drive from Miami to Louisiana. Our first home was in Ft. Polk, Louisiana. I had never been away from my family. My home was with my family. Now my home was wherever my Knight was. As a young lady of 18 years of age, I thought, "I would follow him where ever he would go." To this day, 25 years later, my place is by his side. I would still follow him no matter where he goes....

A couple of years after we got married my Knight shared something with me. He told me that when I first walked into the classroom, he had leaned over and whispered something to his friend. I asked him what he had whispered. He had told his friend, "That's the girl I'm going to marry."

Be still my heart...


Bellezza said...

Your story is so beautiful it is almost like a fairy tale. I can see God's Hand all over it, bringing you together even though it must have seemed at times that could never happen. I'm SO HAPPY for you that not only did you become a couple, but that you love him as much now as you ever have. What an incredible blessing. Not many have a marriage such as yours.

The Gatekeeper said...

I have an idea . . . it will be a wonderful surprise for you and your knight. Give me a few days. All I can say, my friend, is that you inspire me. May the Lord continue to bless your marriage for the next 25 years and beyond.

Robin said...

That's so beautiful. You truly were meant to be together.

I met my husband during my first year of college. I don't remember doing this, but my mother SWEARS that I called her that evening to tell her that I met "the one, but that I was scared because it was too soon, I was only 18". I still deny making the phone call, but we've been together ever since. We celebrate our 16th wedding anniversary on Saturday.

JAM said...

"To this day, 25 years later, my place is by his side. I would still follow him no matter where he goes....

Even back to Fort Polk?

Just kidding. I once worked for a restaurant chain in Louisiana called Johnny's Pizza House, based in West Monroe. They had a unit in Leesville and the base there was 95% of their customers.

A wonderful story. My parents were sweethearts from a young age and their story sounds like yours and the Knight's.

Before I met my wife, I had seen her across the room at a Christmas party we were both at. I told my buddy who was with me, "I'm in love." Sometimes all it takes is one glance. It took me several months to convince her I was the one for her though.

Lady G~ said...

Bellezza- I truly consider that I'm living a "fairy tale" life. We have our ups and downs, but the ups outweigh our downs. Well, I focus on our ups. ;o)

Gatekeeper- I can't see me inspiring anyone, but thank you for the complement.

Robin- Congratulations on your 16th wedding anniversary! May the Lord continue to bless you in the years to come.

JAM- My heart's desire is never to return to Ft.Polk, BUT if that is where the Lord leads my Knight, that is where I will go. I don't recall a Johnny's Pizza. We use to eat at a place called Pasquale's. As for the story of you and your lovely wife... ah... how very romantic that you pursued her.