I apologize for the delay in finishing up my little trip down memory lane-- all that turkey and pie had me groggy with gluttony. If you missed the earlier segments, part one is here and part deux here.
And on with the show...
I was excited to get back to school for junior year. Not only was I anxious to see Josh again, but 5 of my friends and I had rented a house together. We were happy to be out of the dorms and in our "own" place. Oh my, the times we would share during the next 2 years living in that house! I could tell stories all day, but I'll have to save them for another time. And probably change names to protect the innocent.
The house had 4 upstairs bedrooms, one of which was no more than a glorified closet, and a semi-finished non-legal room in the basement. That's where Nicole (the mascara wielder) and I lived for 2 years. The bedroom was semi-finished because the area of ceiling above my bed was, well, missing the ceiling. It wasn't legal because there was no egress window, thus we were sleeping in a death trap in the event of a fire. But come on, what could possibly start a fire in an ancient house with equally ancient electrical wiring housing 6 girls and at least that many curling irons?
My mother didn't have a peaceful night's sleep for 24 months.
Nicole and I slept like babies, with a sheet tacked up to cover the hole over my bed, and a hammer next to the tiny glass pane just below ceiling level in our room. We were sure we could squeeze through if necessary. Maybe we were right; it was before my hips had expanded to make way for Alex and Derek. It was also back when my breasts were perky. But this train of thought is depressing, so let's move on.
It was in that house that I would crawl out of bed at an ungodly hour on ROTC mornings, walk the mile and a half to the Big House for football games, stay up all night cramming for exams, and think up cruel practical jokes to inflict upon my unsuspecting housemates.
And it was a mere 3 months after moving in, in that very same semi-finished, illegal room, that Josh got down on one knee and asked me to marry him.
Yes, I said 3 months. We certainly didn't waste any time, eh? I wasn't even pregnant.
(It's a JOKE mom and dad. Just a JOKE.)
I'm not sure exactly how it happened. A few weeks before school started, Josh and I were at field training in Texas and he was talking about other girls. Then we arrived at school, went to a party together, and before classes had even begun we were morphing from a couple of friends into a... couple.
I would be remiss if I didn't add that in between us starting to go out together and before we became an established couple, Josh did go out once with Gertrude. Of course, I didn't know that at the time. He was making sure that his feelings for her were completely gone before moving on. I like to make him feel bad about this from time to time, reminding him that he was checking out all of his options before committing to me. I think he would like me to stop doing this, and so darling, as an early Christmas gift to you, I promise to think about no longer bringing this little faux pas up to you any longer. Love you!
Anyway, once he realized that Gertrude should stay in the past, and I was obviously hot stuff (ha!), from then on we were inseperable. Just ask my housemates. Looking back on it, I'm not sure how they even stood being in the same room with us. We were that disgusting display of PDA that no one wanted to see and yet couldn't get away from. Girls, if you're reading this, I'm sorry.
But as much as we were in love, even I was shocked when Josh brought up marriage to me one night in his tiny shared apartment. I had been enjoying the ride with nary a thought for the future, but my husband is the same man today that he was back then, and he is a planner through and through. His thoughts were 2 years ahead on what was going to happen when we both commissioned into the Air Force and were given assignments. There were plans to be made, and he wanted to waste no time.
And so it was that when I went home for Christmas break, I introduced my family to Josh for the first time. Not as my boyfriend, but as my fiancee.
And the rest, as they say, is history!
Of course, there are many more little side stories to share, and I promise to do so in the weeks to come. Nothing like having your husband on the other side of the world to give you plenty of time to blog. And to miss him. And to want to make out like a couple of college students.
Did I really type that?
I love you Joshie, and I'm so very glad that you asked me to marry you. I would do it all again. Except I wouldn't let you go out with Gertrude. Rats, did I bring that up again?!