Thursday, January 26, 2012

How I started dating my husband

Today marks the 3rd anniversary of the day that my husband and I began dating. Be sure to check out the story of how we met before reading this installment in the Our Love Story series!

Now for the story...

Between the time we met in November and the time Kerry moved to Chicago to begin his graduate studies in early January, we exchanged hundreds (seriously, hundreds...I have them all printed out and in my keepsake box!) of messages via facebook. I am not sure why we chose this method of communication, but, we did, and I am glad to have those "get-to-know-you" conversations preserved for all time. We had established a good foundation for our friendship through these myriad messages, and I was looking forward to finally living close enough to each other where we could have face-to-face conversation on a regular basis.

Naturally, since I was the only person Kerry knew at Moody, we spent lots of time together. We rode the L to Target with several of my friends, I introduced him to my favorite coffee shop, showed him around campus and shared a chocolate cake shake at a Chicago must-see with him. We played chess in the student center late on a Saturday night and went to church together. I still was not sure where our relationship was going, whether we were spending so much time together because I was a familiar face or because he was interested in pursuing me further. My mind was put to rest regarding this when he asked me to go to dinner with him at Efes, a beautiful authentic Turkish restaurant in the Lakeview neighborhood, after church on January 18th. I claim this as our first date. After dinner, where I had come prepared to pay for my meal since I still was not sure where our relationship was headed, I came back to my dorm room and told my roommate that I had just shared dinner with the man I was going to marry.

That next week was busy for both of us, so we did not see each other much. We went out for cake shakes again one time that week, and I was sure that Kerry was going to ask me to be his girlfriend while we were there, but, much to my disappointment, he did not. We went to church together on Sunday and went our separate ways once we got back to campus. Monday, which was Kerry's longest day of classes, came around and I was not expecting to see him since he had such a busy day. I had gone to dinner and was sitting in my room, probably working on a paper or reading one of the many, many books I read while in college, when my phone rang. It was Kerry and he wanted to know if I would accompany him to the grocery store. I did not think anything of this because he had had an emergency appendectomy over Christmas break and was under a weight lifting restriction. I figured he just needed someone to carry his groceries home, something I had done for him already. So, we began the mile or so walk to the grocery store in the bitter January cold and I was just chattering away, per usual. I had gathered by this time that Kerry was a man of few words, but that night he was silent. I talked the whole way to the grocery store and was actually starting to run out of things to say! He grabbed my gloved hand in the parking lot of the Jewel on Clark St. in downtown Chicago and said, "I have been wanting to ask, but just couldn't get the courage up...will you be my girlfriend?". I, of course, said yes and we continued on into the grocery store to get the things he needed. Although Kerry will admit to being slightly embarrassed by the fact that he asked me to be his girlfriend in the parking lot of a grocery store, I think it was adorable and perfectly suited to his personality. And, in case we ever forget that important event, I saved the receipt from that shopping trip and it graces the front cover of our dating scrapbook!

Check back in March to read the story of our engagement!

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