Can you remember your first romantic kiss? Who was it? Are you still in contact with that person, or have they drifted away on the tides of life?
When I was 21, I wasn't sure I was ever going to have a first kiss. At an age when many people have had a romance of some kind, I had never had a boyfriend. Maybe the two years I had spent in a convent had had something to do with it. In any case, I had managed to crush most expectations of a relationship in my mind. They happened to other people. I was just glad if I could make friends. I was living in a single room in Perth, Western Australia, with my family living all the way on the other side of the country. I decided friends were essential, and I was glad for all they did for me, but I tried not to expect any more.
And so, when Graham asked for my number after giving me ride home from youth group one night, I told myself it was just so we could organise future lifts. Graham was a nice young man, quiet, with an unexpected sense of humour. I liked him, but I thought he was just being nice to the chubby girl who needed a lift home.
I entered his number in my mobile, and promptly forgot about it.
A few days later, I walked home from work. I'd arranged to go to the movies with a workmate, and I was keen to shower and change before she came to pick me up. I walked into my room, threw my bag and phone onto my bed and jumped in the shower. After I'd finished, I walked back to the bed and realised I had a message. My heart sank. I was sure Katie was cancelling on me.
I read the message. "Hi, it's Graham. I was wondering if you'd like to see a movie with me tonight?"
I'd been asked out. I was stunned, and I had to re-read the message several times for it to really sink in. Eventually, I replied, enthusiastically accepting. Then I wrote another message, to cancel my evening with my workmate.
"Katie, I'm really sorry, but I am not going to be able to go out with you tonight. I have a date! YAY! I'm so excited!!! Wish me luck!"
I hit send, and then realised. I hadn't sent the text message to Katie. I'd hit "reply".
I'd sent the message to Graham.
In an instant, my dream of impressing Graham with my poise and charm crumbled, and I was hit by a wave of embarrassment. He probably thought I was silly now, some relationship-obsessed girl who took a simple evening at the movies as a sign of something much more significant than it was.
It didn't take long for my phone to beep again. I had another message. I checked it. It was very simple.
"I think you sent your last message to the wrong number. I'm glad you're excited. What time shall I pick you up?"
And, even though tone is hard to express through text, I felt better. I realised Graham didn't mind my silly text message, and my forthcoming evening started to shine with excitement again.
Our evening went really well, and on the way home our conversation turned to when we would see each other again. We decided that the next evening was fine for both of us. Graham pulled into my driveway, and parked the car. I started to say goodbye, when we kissed.
My first kiss.
And then we said goodbye, and I went inside, only to lie awake all night in astonishment at how fast life could change.
When I look back on it now, I realise this story is probably very typical. The interest comes from what stemmed from our first date. The man who asked me out on my first date and shared my first kiss, also became my first boyfriend. Eventually, he asked me to marry him, and in October of 2011, I did. I love Graham so much.
Most of the time, life is not like a fairytale. People usually fumble their way through their relationships, learning through experience and heartbreak. I don't know why Graham and I were so lucky, or why we never made a major mistake. I can only believe that we were meant for each other, and that we are being guided through our relationship. I don't know where we will end up, but I am grateful, right now, that we are so happy, and have shared nearly three years of joy together. I pray all my friends find where they are meant to be and find themselves as happy as I am now.
Thank you for reading my rather soppy post. I leave you now with a picture of Graham and I, taken right after we totalled up the cost of a wedding: