This year, Valentine's Day messages on facebook were all about when you met your spouses, when you were engaged and the date you were married. My status was rather long that day... because we were engaged and unengaged a number of times. Many of my facebook friends asked me about it. It's all part of a fun story and a romance that stumbled at first, but when it finally got its' feet on solid ground, has survived and become the adventure of my lifetime.
If you go back a a few days in my blog, you'll find my Valentine's entry. It is about the day my hubby and I met. We began dating in May of 1984. We went on a horseride together for that first date. I put him on a half-arabian named Al. (he had a fancy name, but I'm not sure how to spell it.) My sweetie tells me that Al helped set the tone for falling in love that day. He was smitten. (Gregg, not Al.) I had fallen for Gregg months before, so as far as I was concerned, it was about time.
I think the first engagement happened sometime after Christmas and before spring. (I'm embarrassed to say that I really don't know the date.) There was a big boulder near a creek at my parents' house. It was a place I would go to think and pray. My sweetie took me there asked me to marry him. I agreed even though deep down I remember thinking that I could always change my mind later. (Not too good of a sign, eh?) By the time we got up to the house I was so unsure that when my dad asked me what was new, I couldn't even tell him I was engaged!
The second engagement came just a few months later, exactly one year after our first date. I was working three hours away and he came and surprised me with a visit. We went for a walk and he asked me again, standing in the middle of a beautiful field. This time I said "yes" and meant it. Unfortunately, this time, he had a few doubts. We stayed engaged for about a month, and then decided to keep dating, but drop the word "engaged" from the equation.
We broke up totally in October and didn't start dating again until about 2 1/2 years later. (That would be August of 1988 for those of you that are keeping track.)
The third engagement was very romantic. He took me up on the Blue Ridge Parkway. We explored some old buildings and enjoyed the scenery. At one point he handed me a present. It was a little white teddy bear with a gift box in its hands. I opened the box and there was a ring inside. Sweetie again said those words that most women only get to hear once, "Would you marry me?" this time I was sure and said "yes". A few hours later, my new Fiance' was acting strange and looking a bit depressed.
We sat and chatted for a while. Realizing that he wasn't as sure about all of this as I was, I told him to take the ring back and just give it to me when he was ready. He responded by saying "keep the ring, just don't wear it." So, I put the ring back in the box that the teddy bear was holding, and took him (and it) back home to Pennsylvania.
In June, Sweetie was planning a trip back to his hometown in Wisconsin. He really wanted me to go with him. One night as we were talking on the phone, he was trying to convince me that I should go with him. I had met his family 5 years before but had not renewed the relationship with them when we started dating again. I shared with him that I didn't think I wanted to start these relationships again if ours wasn't going anywhere.
I promise I didn't mean for this conversation to be an ultimatum. :)
Sweetie was very sad when we hung up that night. It was about 11:15 or so when we got off the phone. About 30 minutes later, I got another phone call. "Put the ring on. We're getting married" were the words that he spoke as soon as I answered. I agreed and 4 months later we were married. It seems that after he talked to me that night, he called his Auntie Phyliss. They talked about his fears and prayed together. After that conversation, Sweetie says he never had another doubt about us again. (I love his Auntie Phyliss!)
So that's it. The four proposals.That's how we came to be. Someday soon, I'll tell you about the wedding....