Our first date was unintentional but also intentional, stalked by two of my friends, and put together with a lot of behind-the-scenes work. Okay, so let me explain. :)
The first date I’m sharing is before we actually started “dating.” But, we had been good friends for about a month or two, and it was really obvious we had a thing for each other. :) Michael invited myself and a couple friends to go play tennis. However, he asked me first without asking the other friends- then was afraid it’d be too weird, so he asked our two friends to come along. What he didn’t know is that I was already hanging out with one of those friends, so we had my friend prod him to see if he actually wanted it to be just the two of us… and he did. So we immediately called up friend #3, told me he was uninvited (haha) and it officially became just Michael and I “hanging out” (but really on a date) for the first time.
As I drove up to the tennis court, I had a million butterflies in my stomach. I was the girl in high school who wanted nothing to do with boys… had never had a boyfriend… had never even been on a date. And here I was, spending one on one time with the first guy I really, really liked.
I worried the MOST about running out of things to talk about. Michael is quieter in larger groups, and I wasn’t sure if he’d open up and talk more or not. But I couldn’t have been more wrong. As soon as I got out of the car to greet him, he gave me the biggest smile and immediately started asking me so many questions. He is one of the best question-askers I know, and it’s something that he’s helped me with so much since we have been together. :) He is always genuinely interested in people and listens to every word you say.
We chatted the whole time playing tennis, about our families and things we loved. About half way through, a random car in the parking lot suddenly turned their lights on and back off again. I thought it was strange, but I was so focused on being with Michael, I ignored it and went on. When it started getting dark, Michael asked me if I’d like to go get ice cream. Of course, I agreed. ;) After he helped me get gas in my own car, he drove me from there to Graeters, one of our favorite ice cream places. I specifically remember the song “Bright” by Ecosmith playing in the car on the way, so ever time I hear that song, it always takes me back to that moment.
We sat on a bench across the street from Graeters in Uptown Westerville and talked and talked and talked for 4 hours straight. We talked about all the places we wanted to travel to and our undying love for dogs, two of the biggest things we have in common. :) I knew something was special about him then. His bright blue eyes, big smile, thoughtfulness, and the way he was an intentional listener attracted me right away. I had never met someone who seemed so genuinely interested in listening to other people and what they have to say, and not just to me, but to everyone around him. He has a deep care for others, and that’s something that he’s helped me grow in tremendously since meeting him. I am incredibly thankful for that!!
So, that is how our first date went. Oh, and the part about having stalkers- that car that turned their lights on and off while we played tennis? Those just so happened to be my dear two friends, Audrey and Brittney, who decided to come and watch us on our first date. Just to make sure I was okay and that it would go smoothly. But I had NO IDEA they were there until after the fact… I died laughing!! :) It’s so sweet to think Michael and I are married now, and those two friends are also getting married next year!!