When I met my husband for the first time, I was sixteen. I had narrowed down my college choices and decided to attend a summer music workshop at my favorite one. On my first day there, as I sat in the cafeteria with my roommate, a guy walked up to the table. “Hi, I’m John. Can I sit with you guys?” he asked. He was a music and French major at the college and was helping out with the workshop that summer.
We remained friends, and I was excited to have know someone on campus when I arrived there for my freshman year. But John had gone to spend the year going to school in France. At the time, neither of us had email, so we sent letters back and forth across the Atlantic – hundreds of letters! I ran to my mailbox every day looking for an airmail envelope from him. While we’d been friends before, we became much closer that year; we talked about absolutely everything in our letters. Near the end of the school year, we both knew that things had changed between us, and I counted the days until he returned to the States.
John lived in the Boston area and I lived near Philadelphia, so we didn’t get to see each other the moment he returned home. So at the beginning of that summer, I planned a trip to Cape Cod. Yes, it was a vacation, but more importantly, it was my first chance to see John face to face in more than a year. I ran out of the rental cottage, hugged him, and he asked “do I get to kiss you now?” (I hear all of you out there saying “awww” right now!)
He gave his first gift to me then, his high school class ring. I wore it on a chain around my neck until we got engaged a little more than a year later. We were married the summer after I graduated from college, and we just celebrated our fifteenth wedding anniversary this August. Our children are our three cats, ranging in age from 14 to 3. He still brings me gifts for no reason – like the roses he brought home for me earlier this week!