Roy and I had our first date on June 22, 1979, and dated for several months. We spent time at the lake in the summer, took a lot of long walks, sat in front of our family’s fireplace, skated most weekends, and spent time with one another’s families. We settled into a comfortable dating life. I hoped for an engagement ring for Christmas but tried not to hope too much. We had only known each other for six or seven months. I knew by then that I would never find anyone like him again who seemed to be made for me and me for him. I knew didn’t want anyone else.
Roy came up on February 13th. He ate supper with us and we just visited. We both had work the next morning, so I was surprised when he was still there at midnight. We were relaxed sitting by the fire talking and he said that he didn’t know if he could come back on Valentine’s Day, so that’s why he stayed so late. He told me that he was tired of coming up to see me as my boyfriend. My heart froze. I was trying to process this, and I know my face showed pure shock and horror. I didn’t give the reaction he wanted, and then he realized what he had said. He reworded, “I meant that I’m tired of coming up here as JUST your boyfriend. Will you marry me?” Now that was totally different, period. And he got a totally different reaction! I couldn’t believe he finally asked!!! He had stayed late just so he could be sure to ask me on Valentine’s Day! How sweet?! Naturally, I said, “Yes!”
When someone had asked when he was going to get around to asking me, I had told them that since that was a leap year he had until February 28. If he didn’t ask me by then, I was going to ask him on leap day. I had heard an old Irish legend that a girl could respectably do so on leap day. Now, I didn’t know if it was true or not, but I was taking it.
As I calmed down from Roy asking me to marry him, he explained that he wanted to speak to Daddy about it before I told my family. He was determined to find a way to come back after work that day and ask Daddy for permission. I assured him that I wouldn’t say anything. The next morning, Mama came in and woke me to get ready for work. The second my eyes opened the biggest smile took over my face. Immediately, she knew. “He asked you, didn’t he?” was all she said. I rushed to say that he had, but I wasn’t supposed to tell them, and why. So we did our best. Needless to say, by the time Roy came back the whole family knew.
My family had grown to love Roy, so even though it would’ve been sweet for him to have asked Daddy’s permission it was certainly forgivable that he didn’t get to do that before they found out. We’ve had 32 great years together, and he’s still the only one I want. I love you with all my heart, Roy!
Be blessed, my friends.