Saturday, February 23, 2008

Cindi and Ted, Chapter Seven

After we had dated for a little over a year, we needed to prepare for a challenge.

I would be leaving home and going to the main campus of the college branch I attended. Even though it was a little over an hour away, we would be apart.

On one hand, I looked forward to the experience of being away from home and having to be responsible for myself. On the other hand, I was really going to miss Ted a LOT!

We'd spent so much time together that it was going to be very difficult to be apart. However, I knew that we would be able to get through it...somehow.

Although I was going to be going through a big change (a new place to live, new classes, being more responsible for things, just having to grow up, being without Ted on a daily basis), Ted's life was going to change in only one way: I was not going to be right there and he would have to get along without me for a while.

We knew we weren't going to break up. That just wasn't an option. We were way too in love to even consider that. We were going to try our best to stay in contact as much as possible.

Keep in mind that this was L O N G before cell phones and computers. Long distance phone calls were expensive, so we couldn't just call each other at the drop of a hat. We couldn't text each other. We couldn't send email back and forth several times a day. And we certainly couldn't meet on any type of messenger service online.

Nope, we were going to have to rely on writing letters and an occasional phone call! And that's what we did. There was a big blue mailbox one building away from the apartment I shared with a couple other girls. The mail pick up time was posted as 5:00 pm. And I took that to MEAN 5:00 pm. Not 4:59, and not 5:02, but FIVE O'CLOCK P.M.

That means that I had to have my letter to Ted IN THAT BOX by5:00. I didn't want to seal the envelope until right before 5:00 in case I had something else to add to the letter, so I was always cutting it close. I needed to make sure that I had stamps and envelopes all the time, necessary items if you're going to be writing letters!

After one week of school, Ted showed up on Friday to bring me home for the weekend. On Sunday, he took me back to school. We fell into a routine then...every Friday he would arrive, and every Sunday he would take me back. Of course each quarter my schedule changed and there were some times when I could go home on Thursday night, so he would pick me up then. We usually didn't leave home to head back to school until sometime early Sunday evening, so we could spend the day together doing different things.

The letter writing lasted for the entire first quarter. After that, he started calling. Every night, at either 10:00 or 11:00 (okay, so I'm getting older and I don't remember!) he would call the apartment and we would talk about how our days had gone.

To be honest, I think that this year apart bothered Ted much more than it bothered me. I had so many new things going on that I didn't have extra time to sit back and think about him and miss him all the time. He, on the other hand, had plenty of time to think about and miss me.

In April of that year, when I was home for a weekend, we had spent Saturday night with some friends. We were out sort of late when Ted finally took me home. I thought our night was ending, but he had something else in mind.

Around 1:00 am on Sunday morning, April 22, Ted asked me if I would MARRY HIM!!

We had discussed this fairly often, but never "officially" if you know what I mean. It was always "well someday when we get married..." or "when we eventually get married..." or "after we're married..." BUT THIS WAS DIFFERENT!

This was serious now. It was the real thing. A proposal from the man I loved. A diamond RING!

Well, without a second's hesitation, I said YES!!

We were so giddy and happy that we just continued to sit and talk for at least another hour. Eventually Ted left and I went to my bedroom. For the first time I really looked at the ring.

WOW, he sure did a fantastic job at picking out something I would like! Back then they didn't have the fancy bridal sets like they do now. You got an engagement ring, then a separate wedding ring. The ring was simple, yet elegant. I absolutely loved it!

I knew that my mom would come in my bedroom early in the morning to wake me up for church and I didn't want her to see it before I had a chance to tell her about it first, so I took it off and put it back in the box. I slipped the box under my pillow and went to sleep with a huge smile on my face.

To be continued...


Paulie said...

Loved it! Thanks for the last chapter . . . more more said the baby! (That's the title of a children's book. lol)