The Story Of The Week
A Date To Remember
by Lauren Coates
It was the first blind date I’d been on since I was a teenager, and I was extremely nervous. I had spoken to this mystery man on the phone, and his voice sounded deep, warm, and self-assured, which was not at all what I felt. A good friend suggested we meet because she felt it was high time I “stopped hugging the walls of my home, and got out to meet some new faces.” but I was reluctant to put myself in the position again to be rejected or hurt.
I’d been divorced two years, from an abusive husband who had moved out while I was at work. My ex-husband had convinced me for years that I was unattractive, and that no other man would want me. As I dressed for the date, I was certain that this man would not like me, because I was shy and introverted. I also didn’t like the way I looked. As I drove to the restaurant, I almost turned around twice as I envisioned the look on his face when I introduced myself.
I imagined it would be the same look I encountered the day before when I met a client for the first time after talking to him for several months on the phone. His expression registered such obvious dismay that I had to ask him if something was wrong. Without thought and I believe unintentional, he blurted out that I didn’t look “nothing” like I sounded. That evening, I cried on the phone to my best friend and vowed to go somewhere and get a makeover, but I never got around to it.
When I entered the restaurant, I saw a guy sitting at a table alone, and instinctively I knew it was him. I almost turned around, because he was so handsome. As I approached the table, he looked up and began to slowly smile. My friend’s description had been well below accurate. He was a big guy with soft brown eyes that twinkled when he spoke, and I instantly felt at ease when he looked into my eyes. For the first time in my life, I experienced love at first sight.
We laughed and talked as if we’d known each other for years, and at the end of the dinner, he asked if I would mind taking a walk with him through a nearby park, and without reservation, I said yes. Six hours later, as we sat on a park bench at 4 am, he asked me to marry him, and I said yes without hesitation. Somehow, I knew he was sincere and felt that it was destiny at work. Seven days later, we flew to Vegas and got married in clothes we rented. That was five years ago and I’ve never known such happiness..