"We are all wanderers on this earth...our hearts are full of wonder, and our souls are deep with dreams." ~ Gypsy proverb

Thursday, June 30, 2011

Where it all began

In a high school is where it all began. I was quite the wallflower and hardly the social butterfly. Quiet, obedient, and certainly a little goody-two shoes. The only things that brought me out of my shell were my dance and English classes--and that might even be stretching it a bit. I had a small group of girl friends, okay 2 or 3, and I wasn't allowed to date until 16. Even when 16 hit, there were no queue's lining up outside my door. (A good thing, too. I would have just stared blankly, like that fish that I posted a couple days ago.)

One day, a new kid came to algebra class. We were all juniors and I remember him sitting 2 or 3 seats ahead of me in the same row. He smiled a lot, and didn't seem to care one bit that he was the new kid. He was goofy in a good way and made people laugh, including me. Eventually as the weeks went by, the teacher rearranged our seats again. It could have been a total fluke. It could have been that the teacher thought this funny, obnoxious new boy would do better sitting behind a goody two-shoes quiet girl in the corner of the room, with no one else to talk to. Who knows. But that's what happened. I found myself sitting in the last row in the corner of the classroom, with this new kid sitting right behind me. He was French, he was energetic, and he teased me constantly. He charmed me like he did everyone else, and we became fast friends. And thus began the biggest crush I had ever had.

Unfortunately, I wasn't the only one with a crush on this French boy. He was the kind of boy that made friends with everybody. He didn't have one circle of friends, he was in all the circles. He ran for student government, performed in front of the school, played sports, he was smart, and well, as I said, he charmed us all. But I think what I loved most about him was that he brought me out of my shell with such ease. It was so easy to talk to him, like talking to a long-time best friend. In a time where my life was beginning to get really complicated and heavy, F. was a joy in my days at school. But our friendship remained just that, a friendship, and at graduation we parted ways.

As years and other relationships passed, I would hear about him through mutual friends. I would always smile fondly, wondering how he was doing. At one time I had heard he was gay!?#! I was devastated with the prospect of that news, but I couldn't believe it either. All questions were answered 8 1/2 years after graduation when I ran into him at the local gym. I remember thinking to myself that I couldn't have looked any worse. I had baggy-hanging clothes on me, no makeup, frizzy hair in a pony tail--I was working out, what can I say? And he looked different too. He was buff. All muscular with long hippy-like hair. He looked good. We exchanged numbers, but he didn't call me for 3 weeks. I sank and prepared myself for disappointment. I told myself that we would just be friends and that's it, and don't get my hopes up. And besides, he might be gay!

Turns out, he had chicken pox. He likes to tell me he was near death, but survived at the thought of calling me. Yeah, right :). But, despite having pox mark all over his face, despite having dropped nearly 20 pounds from his sickness, he did call and we had dinner. He talked about his ex-girlfriend for quite some time at that dinner. The good news, he wasn't gay, and an old friendship picked up where it left off nearly 9 year ago. But this time, we fell in love.

Tomorrow will be 11 married years with F.. We've had our rough parts, especially in the beginning. We had to learn how to communicate, and we've helped each other overcome difficult things. Most importantly, we've helped each other grow up. It's been an amazing trip, our time together so far. He has kept me laughing and smiling through it all.

He is intensely private, so this is all I'm allowed to show :).
Happy Anniversary F.,

with all my love,

xx oo

Bird ICAD #14, more here

Houses ICAD #15


  1. Oh MJ, Happy Anniversary! I have know my husband since I was 16 too. We went to different schools and I moved my senior year of high school [don't you just love the military?], but the next summer we were back together. In August we will have been married for 29 years!!

  2. Oh what a lovely story! My DH and I have been married 11 years, too (and have been together for 16 years, but not nearly as amazing as having first met when we were 16 - we met when we were 25). From what little I know about F, I am chuckling to imagine him with long, hippie hair ;-). My DH changed my life forever, too. I wish I would have known him at 16. Happy Anniversary!!

  3. I had a feeling this would have the happiest ending! I got all warm and content, thinking, Now here's going to be a good, fine story. And it was, and it IS! How beautiful that you found each other again. How lovely that you never really lost each other. Congratulations and happy anniversary, MJ and the mysterious (but funny and yours) F!

  4. Happy Anniversary! What a great love story you & F have. I love how you mentioned rough patches because that makes it even better; you went through the rough stuff and came out stronger. What a beautiful thing to have married your best friend.

  5. Happy Anniversary! Many, many more! Lovely story and tribute to you both.

  6. Happy Anniversary! I love reading people's back stories, how they met and all - thanks for sharing and thank F for allowing you to do so despite his private nature ;-)

  7. Happy Anniversary ! That was so beautiful thank you for sharing something so personal.

  8. Oh, what a wonderful love story!

    "Most importantly, we've helped each other grow up."...beautiful, and what is such a wonderful part of marriage!

    Happy Anniversary! (and so nice to see even a bit of a glimpse...)

  9. Happy anniversary MJ! What a great story! Greg and I will be marries 11 years next month!

  10. i just love the personal stories! romance is frustrating while it's happening and then so romantic in retrospect! thank you for sharing your story and happy anniversary. there is nothing in the world more beautiful than a happy marriage...(except maybe the babies!)

  11. Oh boy!! What a great post MJ! Thanks for sharing that story and Happy Anniversary!! I am also married to my high school sweetheart and our anniversary is coming up next month. Perhaps I will also have to take a trip down memory lane :)

    In response to the comment you posted on my Yarn Along post yesterday, my daughter is 7. She is a strong reader but her comprehension could use a little practice...so maybe we will do HP every other book. We'll see.

  12. Happy anniversary MJ and also to your hubby!

    I met my hubby when I was 16, too, and thankfully, we circled back into each others lives.

  13. Oh my Happy Anniversary! That is the sweetest story! Thank you for sharing it. You made me smile. Congrats to the both of you!

  14. : ) sweet. happy anniversary! i love love stories.

  15. Happy anniversary! :) I met my love in high school as well, but we're both in our early/mid twenties and have been together more than six years. It's a magical thing to know the love of your life when you (and he) were just kids. Congrats on your marriage! And thanks for sharing your story.

  16. Oh this is lovely, MJ. What a great story and you told is so beautifully!

    Happy happy anniversary to you and F!

  17. Oh la la! :-D What a great story and you've told it brilliantly. Happy anniversary to you two.

    Thanks for your lovely comment, it's been good to blog less and do more away from my laptop...need to remember that. Have a lovely weekend, Love from London xo

  18. what an adorable sweet story! many happy returns for your anniversary and many more to come. and your index cards are fun too!

  19. oh my oh my oh my. love love love. love the story, love your writing, love the pics and LOVE that half a face! What a babe! Your blog is a rich, wonderland. Thank you!!!!!

  20. Oh, I love reading love stories! Thank goodness you two reconnected after all those years ;)

  21. happy anniversary~

    i couldn't help thinking...i'm so glad i'm not married to my 16 year old (heavy duty) crush! :)

  22. oh, wonderful.
    i smiled a bit because i also married my high school sweetheart. this year will be 14 years of marriage. rough patches, too. and he is also intensely private and dislikes his picture being made public on the blog.
    i love him.

    happy anniversary to you two. and many more!

  23. Happy Aniversary!
    What a romantic story. I love it.
    Made me feel all mushy (in a good way :)

  24. Happy belated Anniversary. And on Canada Day ; )

    A delightful love story to read, thanks for sharing.



“Life isn't about finding yourself. Life is about creating yourself.”
~ George Bernard Shaw