Tomorrow Jeramy and I celebrate our 10th wedding anniversary. In preparation for that, I thought it might be nice to share how we met and began dating. I've touched on parts of it briefly since the beginning of this blog, but I have never written in all down at once.
I always laughed at the "band camp" references in the movie American Pie because while we did not meet at band camp, we did initially meet thanks to band class almost 16 years ago. I was an oboe player, and Jeramy was a drummer in the grade below me. Because our high school band was small, we often pulled in middle school students for the marching band. So when Jeramy was in 8th grade and I was a Freshman, we ended up in the percussion section together with him on bass drum and me on cymbals as there are no oboes in marching band. I was a pretty typical oboe player: a know-it-all type A who felt herself far superior to any idiot percussionist. This was especially true with immature middle-schooler bass drum players like Jeramy. I vaguely recall being quite the bossy brat towards him, and I certainly did not think twice about him. Besides I was quite wrapped up in another boy from church during that time, and I would have probably collapsed with laughter had anybody told me that we'd wind up married six years later.
The next year when we were both in high school, we saw much more of each other. By then, Jeramy had fully entered what an outside observer my think of as his teenage rebellious phase. He wore a leather jacket with patches of anarchy symbols, had a wallet with a chain, dyed his hair black, and I think at one point he even shaved most of it off. He definitely gave off a rocker vibe and started getting together with some of my friends before jazz band in the morning to rock out. This definitely stood in contrast to my honor-student, good little church girl image. He was also Mormon, and according to the church I was attending at the time that was the equivelant to being Satan himself. During the course of this year, it became clear to me that things were not going to move forward with my crush from church. This was actually a blessing in disguise, because while I was heartbroken, I began thinking for myself rather than letting this boy and church feed opinions to me. I suddenly discovered that I disagreed with many of their so-called sins such as dancing, non-Christian music, those horrible Mormons, etc.
Then I enter my Junior year. I am completely over my crush from church. Jeramy is a Sophomore, and we wind up having health class together in addition to band. In that class, I sat next to him along with his friend and our ex-paperboy Brian (whose poor performance had caused my mom to call his house on a nearly daily basis). As we began to talk more, I discovered that despite our many differences I actually liked him, and that underneath that rebellious exterior was an incredibly sweet guy who placed high value on family and friends. What was even crazier was that I somehow, gradually, without really even knowing how or when it started developed a *gasp* crush on him. Being a typical female teenager, I began my passive assault of flirtations intended to appraise him of my feelings. I'd give him rides home from school even though it meant going a mile in the opposite direction of my home. I'd proclaim to be cold during pep band performances at football games so that he'd let me wear that same bad-ass leather jacket that I deplored just a year earlier. After a month or two of this, he finally asked me to go with him to see a Christmas lights display at a nearby amusement park. I agreed hoping it was a date even though the word was never mentioned, and swearing to everybody around me and especially my parents that this was most definitely not a date.
Jeramy picked me up that night in the '79 Camaro he had recently finished fixing up. I was pretty excited to get to ride in such a vehicle equipped with a large speaker box taking up the entire back seat and fuzzy dice hanging from the rear view mirror. I don't remember many of the specifics of that night except that we enjoyed the lights and then spent quite a bit of time cruising around in his car. He walked me to the door when he dropped me off, but I didn't get so much as even a hug to confirm that this was indeed a date.
Now I can't remember if it was the next day or the next weekend, but he ended up accompanying me in taking my friend Vickie to her youth symphony practice. Jeramy and I were in the front seat and she was in the backseat with her tuba. Now remember that accident I had when I was 16 from yesterday's fender bender post? Well this is exactly when it happened. Later he came with me when my car was towed home, and called Brian (yes the ex-paperboy) to come down and look at my car. Before I knew it, they were in the garage starting to fix it. (I like to joke that I started dating Jeramy in order to get my car fixed but then had to keep him around because I owned a junker that always needed repair). He stayed all day, and then I drove him home in my parents car late that night. Just before exiting he said those magic words every teenage girl is longing to hear: "Do you want to go out with me?". I said yes. And just like that we were a couple.
It was almost overwhelming to me how quickly we moved into couplehood. When we weren't at school, we were almost always together usually at my house. My mom quickly put Jeramy whether it was babysitting my brother when I wasn't home or fixing a car for her since we only owned beaters. I was feeling a bit overwhelmed by the constant togetherness, and it took me a while to settle into it. But Jeramy seemed completely comfortable and within a month confidently declared that we would get married some day. Nobody could ever say he was commitment-phobic! Many of our friends were shocked by our "going-out" status since we seemed so very opposite on the surface. I clearly remember our band director getting quite the chuckle the first time she saw us holding hands.
Things just continued from there. Jeramy ended up graduating high school a year early with me in 1996, because he disliked school and had plenty of extra credits from his summer diesel mechanics class and jazz band. After we graduated he started working full-time switching from odd job to odd job every year or so. I started at the local community college. He moved out into his own apartment the next August, and since he could afford to support me while I continued my education we started talking marriage. One night in November, he took me to Snoqualmie Falls (a large waterfall about 45 minutes out of Seattle). When we were alone overlooking the falls, he kneeled down, took my hand and asked me to marry him, and when I said yes he put the prettiest engagement ring he could afford (which wasn't much) on my hand. The next summer, on August 22, 1998 we were married.
I know this is so cliche, but it really is hard to believe how quickly time has passed.