|Some shoes I was wearing the day before the date.|
A year ago today, I went on my first date with my husband.
We went to a Thai restaurant down the road from my house. It was sunny. I remember looking at the sunlight on our table while we talked about things. It was easy to smile in that sunniness. I'd been on so many first dates—I was so good at first dates, and I could tell this date was going to be easy and relaxed.
I didn't expect to go out with him more than a few times because I was moving in two months, so after dinner when he suggested we get dessert, I suggested we go to a grocery store and buy a pint of ice cream. We ate it in his car in front of my house with two spoons and talked about dating. The topic broke one of my rules for first dates, but I was moving and 31 years old (so, who cares)—and it was clearly something fun and funny to discuss on a March night with a skinny moon.
It's super embarrassing now, but somehow in that conversation I had the audacity to say, Don't worry, your wife is going to love you. You will have such a good life. (We had just met! Hi let me be your older sister!)
"To love at all is to be vulnerable. Love anything, and your heart will certainly be wrung and possibly broken. If you want to make sure to keep it intact, you must give your heart to no one, not even to an animal. Wrap it carefully round with hobbies and little luxuries; avoid all entanglements; lock it up safe in the casket or coffin of our selfishness. But in that casket—safe, dark, motionless, airless—it will change. It will not be broken; it will become unbreakable, impenetrable, irredeemable.
We'd been talking about the never ending merry-go-round of vulnerability and dating. (It never ever ends!) One of his friends had emailed him the quote a few days before, so he looked it up on his phone right there in the dark of the car for me. I don't think I've ever told anyone that part of the story because it just happened, and it felt ordinary. But, it was one of the best first date conversations of my life.The alternative to tragedy, or at least to the risk of tragedy, is damnation. The only place outside of Heaven where you can be perfectly safe from the perturbations of love is Hell." —C.S. Lewis, The Four Loves
Usually, I mitigate the anxiety of a first date by pretending my date and I are already good friends, but it was so unusually lovely to be treated as a good friend.
He walked me to the front door, and I walked into my house and up to my room feeling like the prettiest girl in the world (I wrote this post). Everything felt full of possibility.
I really thought we would go out a couple more times and then realize we weren't a match. Which makes the feeling of prettiness he left me with more significant.
Perhaps, because even on that first date, I knew he gave it to me for free.
To celebrate this little one year anniversary-- If you're married: share your first date story—did you notice anything different? If you're single, you know I want to hear your best first date stories (because real life is always better than the movies...or The Bachelor :)