THE WAY WE MET
I’m joining in on Flashback Fridays over at My Tiny Kingdom, which today desires a tale of "LOVE, LOOK AT THE 2 OF US."
It’s always fun to hear how a married couple met, and I need to remind myself not to worry about my own sons and how they might meet their future wives, because of course: God has us in His kind and loving hands.
Even if my boys ARE commuters and don’t have roommates.
My husband Chip and I met in college and then parted ways, never to meet again. But we did. It all began with a house fire. And ended with a snowstorm.
When I was in college, my roommate Martha spent a summer in France on a missionary trip. When she came back, she told me: “There was a guy on our team who would be just perfect for you!” I believed her, because well, Martha was Martha. But this young man went to a different college than ours, so I knew there was no opportunity to meet him.
Meanwhile, my future husband had been very impressed with Martha—and with the other students from our college. He felt that they were getting a better education than himself, that they were well-versed in apologetics, and that they didn’t just blindly followed their faith because they had been raised that way, but that they LIVED the faith in their hearts. He began to question his own choice of college.
While Chip was in France, a terrible thing happened—his family’s home caught on fire and partially burned down. He decided to stay out a semester from college and help rebuild. And when it was time to go back…he switched to Cedarville College, where Martha and I were.
Martha was excited. “That guy has transferred here! I HAVE to introduce you, I think you were meant for each other!”
I believed her.
But Martha being Martha, she just never got around to it. She kept forgetting and was so busy.
So I took matters into my own hands.
One day, when I passed Chip on the sidewalk, I looked him in the eye and said, “HI, CHIP!” This, coming from a girl who was too afraid to get up in the cafeteria to get a second glass of drink during a meal! He was startled and intrigued.
My group of friends always took turns choosing where we were going to sit in the cafeteria, and so one day when it was my turn, I chose a place right beside Chip and his friends, and took the opportunity to introduce my own self.
A few days later, when it was my turn to choose where to sit in chapel, I picked a place (you guessed it!) in front of Chip and his friends. When chapel was over, I turned around, and-- “Why, hello again!”
The next day, Chip and his roommate were talking about the college production of The Music Man, and how he should ask a girl to go with him. “I don’t KNOW any girls to ask,” Chip lamented. “Why, yes, you do,” his roommate said, “What about that girl you were talking to in chapel?”
So, when Chip called to ask me for this date, he was afraid I wouldn’t even know who he was. But of course, I did: I had been waiting for him!
So we shared our lives in college up until it was almost graduation day, the way a lot of college students do—talking and talking and talking of ideas, philosophies, religion, and ways of the world. We were such best friends.
But then unhappiness came. Chip wanted us to “just be friends” instead of the deeper and continuing relationship I wanted us to have. And the “just be friends” quickly turned into avoidance altogether.
At the time, although I was so hurt, I was still calm in the face of knowing that if God had a plan for us, He would perfect it. But as the years went by, my emotional ties for Chip were broken, and he became a part of my past memories.
I went to grad school and then got a job as a school librarian. He went to grad school and worked in a group home for United Cerebral Palsy.
Then came the snowstorm, which cancelled my school for the day. Taking the opportunity to really clean house, I came across the only correspondence Chip and I had exchanged after we graduated from college. At the very bottom of his letter, he had written a line easily missed: “Please write again.”
Although it was almost two years later, I did. We began exchanging letters, but they were so mundane.In the summer, when I received a letter from him that contained such lines as “My golf is taking an upswing for the better” and “The peas in the garden are growing” I burst out to a friend, “I don’t know WHY we’re doing this!” and she replied, “Well then, write and tell him so.”
In the falltime, I did just that. His response was to immediately telephone to say he could get a ride my way (from Pennsylvania to Indiana), and could he come to visit in a couple of days?
He visited me in October, I spent Thanksgiving at his parents’ home, he came to Indiana once in January, once in February, and in March we became engaged on Easter morning. We wrote letters to each other every single day, and tried to keep telephone calls down to every two or three.
People said, “WHO are you getting married to?! I didn’t even know you were dating anyone!”
Martha was my matron of honor.
On our honeymoon, at Gettysburg National Park