August 14, 1999.
Just shy of my 25th birthday, I put on a white dress and pledged "I do" in front of a crowd of 135 friends and family. It was a beautiful hot summer day in Madison, Wisconsin when I married my college sweetheart. We met early freshman year. We started dating in October, 1992 and we never broke up, not even for a day.
I did not go to the university to meet a husband. I had a few boyfriends in high school, but had never been particularly popular, I didn't believe that boys liked me all that much. About 15 minutes into my first "house party" I learned that I was wrong, yet I pushed all of the coveted male attention aside once I met "Dave" in a cramped dorm room of Ogg Hall. I was on a date with one of Dave's friends, John, a rather attractive, cocky freshman who appeared to have very little interest in me once our date began. Dave and I spent most of the evening chatting and eventually flirting over a sundae at the now defunct Ella's Deli on State Street. There was an awkward moment at the end of the evening where I stood with John and Dave and one of them had to walk me home. John was chivalrous and took me home from our date, but not before I gave Dave my phone number. It took him a week to call back, but it was worth it.
"Is Rachel there?" a male voice said on the other end of line. "That's me" I answered.
"I don't know if you remember me" Dave said. "But I am your future husband."
He was joking at that time, but it was a lovely prophecy, and here we are in 2011, with three boys, a dog and two cats between us.
I am amazed every day that it happened like it did. So young. So random. So meant-to-be. Our courtship was a mix of frat parties, study dates and cross-country road trips. By the time we graduated I had no doubt in my mind that Dave and I were "forever."
Relative to our ages we have already been together "forever", but I know that there is so much more to look forward to. Our boys will grow up, we will have new adventures, and we will do it all together.
Happy Anniversary David.