My partner on the university summer ballroom team almost didn’t ask me out.
We’d spent every morning for a good chunk of the summer dancing together. I’d gone out once with another guy on the team—a boy that, while nice enough, didn’t exactly impress when he went on about how desperate he was to get married.
Over the course of the summer, my partner and I became great friends, and yeah, we flirted a bit. But I kept talking about how I was going to serve a mission, and he took me seriously on that.
I don’t remember the first time I saw him, but I do remember the first impression I had of him. It was early in the summer before we had assigned partners and instead the guys rotated between the girls every few minutes. He was my last partner of the day, and I remember thinking, Wow, this guy can really lead, and we work well together. We both finagled things so we’d end up assigned together, and we had a ball all summer long.
During that time, the film Strictly Ballroom came to theaters. I thought it would be a great excuse to hang out—ballroom is what we did, right? It wouldn’t necessarily be a date . . . I was going on a mission, remember. And I insisted that I didn’t like him like him, although when my friends asked about him, I had a hard time sticking to the story . . . . and not blushing.
He and I made plans to see Strictly Ballroom, but then it left the theater before we had the chance. Here was this guy who wasn’t afraid of a smart girl with a scholarship (big points in my book), who could quote Shakespeare for crying out loud, and who had the warmest chocolate-brown eyes ever, and my one excuse for seeing him off the dance floor had fallen through.
Dang. Now what?
Fortunately, he decided that we should still see a movie, so we went to Sleepless in Seattle. Best first date ever. No awkwardness at all. We already had inside jokes and plenty to talk about. It did take him awhile to stop looking for me four inches taller than I really was, because he was used to my silver Latin-heels-enhanced height. That first date turned into many more.
He proposed on my birthday, and the following spring, we were married. It’s been fourteen years now, and each has been better than the last. Today we work together better than we did in our fancy dancing shoes and costumes.
Happy anniversary to my life-long dance partner.
I love you more!
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