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How We Met

Last night Pickle wanted me to read him a bedtime story. As I went to grab one, in the dark, I realized they had all been packed the day before. I decided to improvise and tell him a very short version of how Chris and I met. Except I pretended it was about a King and a Queen.

Tonight, as I laid here talking to Chris about designing the spaces in our new house, I was also thinking about the story I told Pickle. What if one day I forget that story? I figured what better way to remember than to write it out?

Let’s start in January 2010. I was working for Wal-Mart as a supervisor. I was living with my boyfriend at the time, in the house we had bought just the year prior. We had been together for a couple of years by this point. Things started getting really rocky between us. Long story short, one day, he decided he was done (without any real warning). I packed my stuff and moved out that night. The following weekend, my parents helped me move the rest of my stuff (in knee deep snow mind you). For about a week or so, I really struggled with the break up. I really didn’t see it coming the way that it did. Needless to say, I was not looking to start anything new.

I decided to take a trip to see my best friend in Kansas. This was the first time I went on a trip by myself. I drove the whole way. I spent a couple of days there, when we heard on the news that it was going to snow heavily. The way they were talking was there was going to be a very dangerous blizzard. I knew I couldn’t drive in a blizzard. I also knew I couldn’t stay there because I had to get back to work at some point. I made the executive decision to leave that night. Worst idea ever!

I was about an hours drive away from home, on the interstate. It was lightly raining, but didn’t seem that terrible. All of a sudden, I hit black ice. I lost control of my car, spinning 360 style through the middle of the interstate’s grass median. I honestly thought I was going to die. I remember screaming “Oh my God I am going to fucking die!” It was the weirdest feeling I have ever felt.

I couldn’t gain control of my car. I was a newbie at driving in these conditions. No one prepared me for what was happening. That is, until I remembered what my younger sister and I had talked about some time prior to this event. I remember her telling me when you’re sliding, not to hit the gas or the brake, just to steer. I finally let off the brake and my car finally came to a stop. There was about 3 inches between me and the oncoming semi truck from the other side of the interstate when I stopped. Scariest fucking thing I have ever experienced.

Fortunately for me, I had passed a cop a few minutes prior to me hitting the black ice. He stopped on the interstate and came to see if I was okay. I was mortified. My heart was racing and I was crying. I wasn’t injured, but man was I lucky to be alive. My car didn’t have a single scratch. The cop offered to drive my car back up to the other side of the interstate. He told me to sit in his truck, but not to talk to his dog.

I went 15mph the rest of the way home. Between the break up and near death experience, I really was not in the mind set of wanting to be with someone.

I returned to work a couple of days later. Everyone kept asking me about my new boyfriend. I was so confused because I did not have a boyfriend and I had no idea who they were talking about. I started working with a new coworker, his name was Chris, but I called him baldie. He was the new supervisor for the Tire & Lube department. I was showing him how to use our hand scanner and certain supervisor tasks. Some people started asking me if I was dating Chris. No I wasn’t. He was nearly old enough to be my father, I am not into that. Plus, like I said, I was not looking for a relationship.

I spent a few days working with the new guy, when all of a sudden one day he tells me. “You know one of my guys has a crush on you.” Uh What?! How could someone have a crush on me, who I have never spoken to? He goes on to tell me that this guy really liked me but was too shy to ask me out. I thought it was a joke so I told him next time you talk to this person, tell him to ask me. He then points out the guy on the other side of the window and says, “That’s him”. Just as he says that, the guy starts walking through the door and towards where we were. Like a fool, I took off running. I was nervous as hell! I didn’t need a relationship.

I remember we were going through a remodel and this was one of the first days of that starting. I was helping clearance out stuff in sporting goods. I was working with someone that I called Diddle (it was an inside joke between her and I). I explained to Diddle what happened and she, of course, was like “oooooooo”. When all of a sudden the guy with his sunglasses still on, came walking towards us. Of course I was nervous. This was at a time I didn’t think it was possible that someone would be interested in ME. Just like the youngins that we were, we both flirted back and forth.

I remember he pretended like he wanted to learn how to clearance merchandise. I showed him. I remember him putting a $2.00 clearance sticker on me. I also remember taking his sunglasses and trying them on. [I know, we are goofballs.]

At some point, I realized I had totally spaced something I was suppose to do earlier. I told him I had to go and I started to reach for my pen. Simultaneously of me reaching for my pocket, he had asked me for my phone number. I gave it to him on the back of a mark down tag.

He immediately texted me so that I knew it was him. At this point, I am not sure that I even knew his name. I remember leaving work that day, wondering what this guys deal was. How could he have had a crush on me, when I had never met him before?

Remember now, I was living back with my parents, in their basement. I asked if it was okay to invite this guy over. I was 20 years old, I didn’t really need permission, but it was their house so I was respectful of that. They didn’t mind if this stranger came over. So I invited him. He came over after he got off work. We talked for hours. When he left, I knew we would see each other again (and not just because we work at the same place). P.s. I learned his name was Chris (not to be confused with Chris “baldie” that I was training).

We spent everyday together from then on. He officially asked me to be his girlfriend on March 3, 2010. We moved in together October 2010.

Then, we moved in with his parents a year later hoping to save money for a house. We were engaged on new years eve 2011. We had started wedding planning prior to actually being engaged. That came to a halt once I got word that my brother may not be home for the date we had originally planned (he was in the Navy) for 3-3-13. He would however, be home on 3-3-12. We thought, can we do this, get married with a 2 weeks notice? We notified family and close friends and we got married 3-3-12 with my brother as the best man. My sister was my maid of honor. My aunt married us at the park I grew up near. It was a very low cost wedding.

It is crazy how love found me when I thought I didn’t want it. I still can’t wrap my head around someone liking me just from seeing my picture on a wall (which is what my husband said got his attention).

Sometimes people spend a lot of time looking for love, a partner. Sometimes, it catches you off guard when you are no longer searching. It’s crazy how life works sometimes.

Jenn

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