We met on the internet–long before eHarmony.com or Match.com; even long before it was common to meet. AOL was king then. Online chat rooms were a new frontier.
It started with a text hello from me as he entered the chat room. I would love to be able to say I picked him out of the faceless crowd, but in fact I was acting as hostess and saying hello to everyone, while carrying on five or six other conversations with other online friends. He started chatting with me, too, and from that start, began our online friendship, exploring shared interests, discussing our lives, sharing troubles. We grew to be friends without ever having met.
When we finally decided to meet in real life, we were cautious. Neither of us intended for us to be anything more than friends. We met in a mall food court in the middle of the day, with the intent to go to a matinee and then part ways. The movie we chose was Escape from L.A. Hardly a romantic movie. I even had plans with one of my sisters for later in the evening.
But none of that mattered. That first date changed everything. For both of us. And we have never looked back.
Sixteen years later, I am blessed to be married to my best friend in the world. And I know he feels the same. We’ve had our ups and downs, but each year is better than the last. I have never laughed so much or felt more loved in my entire life. And all with the person who is also my best friend. What’s not to like about that?
Now we’re both pursuing our dreams of being published novelists. What an adventure this is going to be!