This post is the second of a series. You can read the first post about how we met by clicking here.
When you go to a Christian college like Westmont, you quickly learn that many people are there to find a mate. Upon arriving, our RA gave us the rundown on dating:
- Non Committal Take Outs (NCTOs): A section plans a group activity, and each person sets up their roommate. It’s horribly flirty, somewhat awkward, and usually quite fun.
- Dorm Date: A section of girls asks a section of boys on a group date. People aren’t matched up one-on-one, everyone just hangs out together.
- Traditional Date: Guy takes girl out to coffee. Both parties act like they aren’t actually on a date. It goes nowhere…probably because both guy and girl act as awkwardly as we look in the above picture.
In January 2001, the start of the spring semester, my section of girls began planning a “NCTO” to Six Flags, Magic Mountain. Me, being dramatic and mopey, could not think of a single boy I might want to date. Instead, I requested that Lori ask someone who would just be easy to spend time with, someone fun. Someone like Jonathan.
There is no better way to get to know someone than spending an entire day with them, screaming your head off, eating horrible food, and singing songs on the radio at the top of your lungs. At one point, as we were walking through the park, he began showing me how he could fake fall. I laughed so hard that I began peeing my pants! Fortunately, it wasn’t enough to show… and my pride and ego weren’t bruised any more than his knees were from the fake falls.
From that day forward we became fast friends—and that was it. Or at least, that’s what I thought. With him I felt safe to be myself; safe to laugh, to sing out loud, to be real. There was chemistry, but it wasn’t the flirtatious kind. It was a comfortable friendship that existed from the beginning. Unlike other boys, there weren’t any games. I think that’s why I never believed he was chasing me; which was a good thing because at the time I didn’t want to be chased.
Later that spring, the real pursuit began. Jonathan borrowed his roommate’s car and asked to take me to Pascucci for A REAL DINNER DATE. Most normal 19 year old women would recognize that dinner alone with a man equals a date. But we went to Westmont, remember? And I was an idiot when it came to dating, remember? Oblivious to his intentions, I agreed. On the way back to campus he nervously shared his feelings for me. I can’t even remember what he said or how I responded, I just know I basically changed the subject and pretended he hadn’t said a thing. And, for some reason, he let me get away with this game. I was in such denial that I didn’t even think anything of it when he “just happened to be coming to California” that summer. I remember my mother questioning his visit. “No boy from Seattle just drops by California unless he’s chasing a girl.”
Clearly my mother was much wiser to Jonathan’s intentions than I was.
And so, the chase continued until the fall of 2001 when everything started to change.
Read the next part of the series by clicking here.