Thursday, July 11, 2013

How We Met

I've been meaning to write this for awhile so one day my kids can read it and laugh and giggle about what dorks their parents are.  And then I noticed that Grace at Camp Patton is having a "how we met link-up" and it was JUST the motivation I needed to get my fingers in gear and type this up. 

So, we met Labor Day, 1999 in Cumberland Falls State Park, KY. 

The End.

Ok, I guess you all want the WHOLE story. 

I had just moved to Lexington, KY a few weeks prior to pursue a Master's Degree in Reproductive Physiology of dairy cows (seriously people..not joking there at all, you can actually get a degree in that) from the University of Kentucky, and Ben was in his second year of his Master's Degree program in Medieval Spanish Literature (sadly..not joking on that I said...we're dorks) at that same prestigious university that had just the year prior won the 1998 NCAA basketball championships.  One of the first things I learned upon arriving in the land of the Bluegrass is that in Kentucky, basketball is religion. 

Anyway, the Newman Center on campus was hosting one of its famous KY mountain hikes.. and as fate would have it, both Ben and I found ourselves in that big passenger van heading into the mountains of Kentucky for a Labor Day hike. 

We didn't actually "meet", however, until the van stopped, we both stepped out, and I noticed that Ben was hiking barefoot.   For some reason,  I was very impressed by that.  Now I just think it's weird...but it definitely explains why our children run around barefoot everywhere. 

Anyway, we spent that whole hike talking...a lot...and discovered that we had a lot in common.  We were both vegetarians and both very "Franciscan" in that we liked simplicity and didn't put a high value on material possessions.  Now, we're both avowed meat-lovers and not nearly so simple.   

We ended up becoming best friends pretty quickly and somehow both volunteered to lead a graduate student bible study that no one else ever showed up for.  Ha we got lots of time together.

Our first official date was to Mass and then to a crunchy, healthy, vegetarian restaurant called Everybody's in Lexington.   Where, as legend goes,  as we were walking there, I walked on the opposite side of the sidewalk as Ben...that's how he tells the story, anyway. 

In October, we took another trip to Cumberland Falls to watch the moonbow where we had a serious talk and decided that we were either going to get married or Ben was going to become a monk...yes, this was only about 6 weeks after we met and before we "officially" started "dating."  

In November,  Ben chose me over the monastery and we officially became a couple.  That Thanksgiving, we took a trip together with another friend to her home in Michigan (Hi Kathy!) and stayed with her wonderful family over Thanksgiving break.  We had a great time.

On Feb. 6th, 2000, so about 5 months after we started dating, Ben proposed and I think I said something profound like of course, I'll marry you., like there was never any question...because when you know it's the right person, you just know. 

I think during spring break that year we went to Nashville and I met his family, and during the summer we went to Rhode Island and he met mine. 

I also was doing my master's thesis research trial and spent that summer and the following fall writing my thesis...and planning a wedding.

In August 2000, Ben finished his master's thesis, was awarded his master's degree and then moved to Louisville, KY and took a job teaching Spanish at a small Catholic school.  I stayed in Lexington until Dec. 15th when I defended my thesis and got my M.S. degree.  Then, two short weeks later, we flew to RI, and I got my M.R.S. degree on December 30th, 2000 in Newport.

Despite the snowstorm, it was a beautiful wedding surrounded by family and friends.

I moved to Louisville with Ben, and we started our life together...and the rest, as they say, is history.  Four children, two many moves to count (from KY to TN to NH to RI to FL and back to RI...and we ain't done moving yet).  We'll be celebrating our 13th anniversary this December.   Life has definitely been an adventure, with lots of ups and downs, but I know that God put the right person in my path that fateful Labor Day back in 1999.

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  1. I really enjoyed this, esp how you talked about marriage right away. Maybe that isn't the way everyone needs to do it but it's true: sometimes you just know. Congrats you two!

  2. Wonderful to see examples of long marriages, and that you both still seem happy! :) So sweet of you to share your story! Thanks :)


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