I am frequently asked how my husband and I started dating. I normally respond with "are you sure you have time for this story?" Depending on how much detail I go in, it can get pretty long...so bare with me, it's worth it.
I met my husband Riley in 6th grade. We went to the same middle school in Maryland, and had some classes together. I would go through stages when I was younger of having a crush on different boys, Riley just so happened to be the boy that year. I would constantly try to talk to him in class or sit next to him in the cafeteria, he didn't really pay much attention to the frizzy head, freckled face girl that was annoying him. At the end of the year I signed his year book about 5 different times, including my home phone number so he would call me (he never did...). The crush ended that summer, mostly because I had forgotten about him while enjoying my summer break. As 7th grade started I didn't really have time to start my crush back up. My dad got offered a job in Texas. We moved to Texas in the middle of the school year and I didn't really think much of Riley since I was going to be surrounded by a whole bunch of new boys (crazy middle school hormones). When the school year ended my dad sent my sisters and me home to stay with our mom during the summer. I don't really remember how but Riley and me started texting which led to him asking me on a date to the movies. It was probably the most awkward date I had ever been on. My mom and sisters had walked me to meet him, which was really just code for them to embarrass me around him. We ended up seeing whichever X-Men movie was out at the time, I didn't really care what we saw I think I was more starstruck I was actually on a date with my former crush. For the life of me I could not explain what that movie was about because the whole time I was so nervous and afraid of doing something stupid (which is pretty common for me). About half way through the movie Riley put his arm around me, and stared at me. I could tell he wanted to kiss me, but must've been as nervous as me. So instead of kissing he just started talking...during the movie. After about 10 minutes of having a casual conversation, he randomly leaned in and kissed me. I remember just blushing throughout the rest of the movie. After the movie ended we walked the mall we were in, holding hands until my mother and sisters found us, embarrassing me again... We said our goodbyes with a hug, because of my family being present. Later that day he texted me and asked me to be his girlfriend, of course I said yes. We didn't hang out again that summer because it was hard to get our parents to agree to take us. The summer was quickly ending and I was on my way back to Texas to start 8th grade. Riley and me decided to try and make our relationship work, but with a new school year it only lasted a few weeks before we called a quits. We still stayed in touch as friends for a few months and eventually faded off from talking. When the school year ended my dad decided he wanted to move back to Maryland so after that summer we went home to Maryland. My dad wanted a fresh start in a new area so we moved to another school district about 40 minutes away from our old one. I started a new school for 9th grade. I didn't end up reconnecting with any of my old friends from Maryland because I also wanted a fresh start. Throughout the 4 years of high school I didn't talk to or think about Riley. About two months after I graduated from high school, I got a random instagram follower and text from a guy. At the same time. At first I had no clue who it was until I stalked his instagram, I realized it was Riley and texted him back. We had a short catch-up conversation before I stopped replying. The next morning I got another text from him, which I thought was cute that he wanted to talk to me again. We ended up texting all day. The next day I woke up to a good morning text from him which quickly became a daily thing that I loved. After about two weeks of texting we decided to meet up at my dad's marina for a day at the Chesapeake bay. I remember feeling so nervous because I really liked him, and didn't want to screw things up. He pulled up in a red jeep and when he saw me he instantly smiled and walked over. I felt all of my nerves go away because it was so easy to talk to him. We went into the part of the marina with a pool and were greeted by my dad...he pretty much gave Riley the generic father scare tactic. Riley dished it right back to him, which made my father like him, and that was rare... After awhile of hanging out with my dad by the pool we decided to take a walk to the bay. Riley saw they were doing kayak rentals and got one for us. We kayaked around the bay for an hour just talking about our lives. It started to get dark so we went back to the marina and I walked him to his car. As we were saying goodbye I leaned in to kiss him but he leaned in for a hug...which led to the most awkward moment of my life. We hugged goodbye and I felt so dumb for trying to kiss him, I thought that maybe he only thought of me as a friend. I drove home and got a text from him, which I was nervous to read, but since I was driving I couldn't open it. The drive home was about 40 minutes. I got another text from him, and another...I had three text from him and in my crazy girl brain I thought he was letting me know that he only liked me as a friend which made me not want to read the text even more. I pulled into the driveway and grabbed my phone and opened his messages to read "I feel like such an idiot", "I didn't know you were going to lean in for a kiss, I was trying to be respective with a hug", "I do want to kiss you". I instantly felt better and told him how embarrassed I felt and we just joked about it all night. We started facetiming each other every night since we lived about 30 minutes away from each other and I didn't have a car so it was hard to hangout, especially with my dad always telling me no... I went to visit my mom the next weekend, and when it was time for me to go home my dad couldn't come pick me up so he agreed to let Riley get me and let us hang out at his house until he could come get me that night. Riley picked me up in his jeep with all the windows down and the roof off (clearly trying to show off). I had my hamster with me because I didn't like leaving him at my dad's house, I was afraid he wouldn't get enough attention... I got in the jeep and put my hamsters cage at my feet. We started driving to Riley's house, it was so beautiful out, for about 5 minutes...than it started pouring rain. The weather channel had said it was suppose to be sunny with no chance of rain so Riley left the roof for his jeep at his house, so we drove in the pouring rain, I could tell he was embarrassed, but we decided to make the best out of it. I quickly realized my hamster's cage was filling with water so he offered his jacket to cover it, which I thought was so sweet. We got to his house, soaking wet and it stopped raining (of course), I remember him randomly looking over at me while we were sitting in his jeep and saying "Can I get a kiss?" I think I may have fell in love at the moment but I didn't want to pull a Ted Mosby and tell him so I leaned in and kissed him. He introduced me to his whole family and we hung out at his house for hours, until my dad picked me up. He ended up coming over my house everyday for a week straight to hangout with me since I didn't have a car to go see him. At the end of that week we were hanging out in my bedroom and he was staring at me which I noticed, when I went to ask him why, he blurted out, "Will you be my girlfriend?" I think I might have yelled "yes" at him because he looked shocked, but also very happy.
That is the story of how Riley and me started our romance, in another blog post I will go into detail about us getting married! Also the picture below is from our first date at the marina. Riley took this while we were kayaking.