September always has me so sentimental, you guys.
Mr. T and I were married in September. But it's also the anniversary of our first date. And I always love thinking about that day when the time comes around (thanks Timehop!).
I can still remember that day. It's blurry. But I remember it.
September 18, 2012. A little over a year after a moved to NYC. Months after I had a thing with a guy I thought I really, really liked. It totally crashed and we were still friends. We were actually in the middle of IKEA when the text from Mr. T came to confirm our plans.
He had picked a bar on the Lower East Side of Manhattan. The bar was a suggestion from a friend. It was strategically placed about halfway between his Astoria apartment and my Brooklyn apartment and was super divey. Which I thought was super sweet since I had mentioned liking dive bars. Now that I think back on it, I realize how incredibly thoughtful it was. He planned a date at a place that he thought I would like that wasn't too far to get to and even did a little research by asking friends. That might not seem like a lot. But when you had been single as long as I had been and dating in the Big Apple, it totally was.
I can still remember the moment I walked into the bar and saw him. Standing there in his blue sweater waiting for me. I thought he was attractive and was excited to continue the date.
We ordered our beers and sat at a table. We talked for a while. About typical first date things. And ordered more beers. At one point we started talking about scotch and Mr. T ordered us a glass of Macallan. Which is apparently a really, really good scotch, I tried to drink it, but had one too many beers on an empty stomach so I remember saying something to him about how I'd puke if I drank the rest. I'm so classy and hot on first dates. It's a wonder why I was ever single.
It was late. We were hungry. So we decided to grab a bite. We tried to go to Black Iron burger , but they were closed. We ended up just grabbing a slice at a random corner pizza joint and watching Jimmy Fallon. Then he walked me to the subway.
I had no idea where that date would go. I knew I liked him and wanted to see him again. But I had no idea how far it would go. I had no idea if he wanted to see me. I just felt, uou know, typical first date type stuff.
I had no idea that four years later we'd be married and living in rural Indiana with a couple of cute little doxies in a house we own.
In fact, if you had even told me at the time that I met him that I'd be leaving NYC ever, I would have laughed in your face. There was no way I was leaving that city.
He'll tell you he knew I was "the one" when I ate a piece of bacon from his fridge at 3am after a long night of drinking. He'll also tell you that he almost didn't like me on our first date because I was way too giggly and he found it annoying.
I'll tell you that I knew he was the one when I wasn't afraid to eat street meat in front of him.
But I think we really knew the day we started talking about getting married and then, ultimately got engaged. Which sounds so weird, but that's just how we were. That's how we are. Our second date was a spur of the moment date. My mom was coming to visit and he couldn't wait to see me so he did the thing you're not supposed to do where you text last minute in hopes the other person doesn't think it's lame.
We watched our two rival teams play each other on our third date.
We met each other's entire family before we had even said the "l" word. It was actually kind of accidental/on a whim after we decided to road trip back to the Midwest for Christmas. Our plan was just to ride together. Then suddenly I was going to a cabin with his family and he was coming to Indiana to have dinner with my family.
We're the couple that first said I love you while drunk at 2am doing karaoke at our local. The couple who decided to get married because we started talking about marriage and it didn't want to make either of us puke. The couple who officially made the decision to leave NYC in like a month.
I dig that we don't have this weird rom com way that we fell in love. I love that our story doesn't follow some sort of rule or code. Everything about our story fits us. It always has and I hope it always will (and that's something I need to remember every single day of our lives).
I don't know if I have any genius words of wisdom when it comes to love. I think love works differently for everyone. Hell, I wasn't really even looking when I found Mr. T. I was just dating and doing my thing and hoping that someday I would find that. In fact, numerous people were shocked when I told them we were getting married.
There's no formula or clear cut way to find the person you're looking for. And I don't think I have the answers because I found someone. I just think I met someone who I wants/wanted to go the distance with and he wants/wanted to go the distance with me. And we work super hard at it. And not that I want to get all #blessed over here, but I feel really lucky.
My life is better with him. I'm better because of him. And I can't imagine doing life with anyone else.
So if you find that, if you feel that, hang on to it and do what you can to make it work. Don't worry about the rules or the codes. Just do what feels right. Because at the end of the day, the rules don't really matter and they're actually pretty dumb.
Just be who you are. Let them be who they are. And do what's right. (I guess that's my words of wisdom.)