Where were we? At the end of Part 1 I had just randomly met Michael at a bar while another boy was on his way to come visit me.
I had started to figure out that perhaps Michael was legitimately interested in me - which made me feel a slight twinge of guilt; after all, there was a perfectly nice Catholic boy literally driving at that very moment to come visit me that weekend. However, I certainly hadn't done anything wrong and Michael can also verify that when he first met me I very clearly had my guard up (my husband is an intuitive fellow, what can I say?).
Once it became clear that the headlining band was about to start, Michael and I wrapped up our conversation...but not before he asked me for my number. I had been anticipating that might happen (and had already worried about whether or not it was okay to give it to him), but I was still somewhat surprised...because how often had I ever met a genuinely nice man at a bar and had him ask me for my number? (I'll tell you how often - never ever. Zero times) What was even more surprising was that I actually felt okay about giving him my number and did so gladly. Even though I hadn't been trying to flirt or anything I could tell that I had a great deal in common with this person and could see us becoming friends.
From that moment on I simply enjoyed the concert with Theresa and left when my friend texted to let me know he was out front. I didn't talk to Michael any more that night, but I did happen to notice where he and his friends were standing as I exited the building. In true girly fashion, I think I was secretly hoping he would notice and look at me when I walked out - as if I wanted him to be interested in me...even though I simultaneously didn't want him to be interested because I clearly was involved on some level with the guy I had been "talking" to that gave me a ride home from the concert that night.
I went about my weekend spending time with friends and enjoying my final dance performance. On Sunday, before my guy friend left town, we had a serious talk about where each of us were at and what that meant for any possible dating future. The main reason this young man and I hadn't ever officially dated and things were so up in the air was because he had been discerning going to seminary...and (perhaps you can guess!) that very weekend he told me that he felt he needed to apply. He wasn't sure whether or not he was being called to the priesthood, but he would never be able to commit to anyone or anything else unless he had tried to go and figure it out.
At the risk of making it sound simpler than it was: I like to think God gave me the grace to handle that entire situation very well and I wholeheartedly supported my friend in his decision, knowing fully well what it meant for our future (or probable lack thereof). We parted on a positive note and I'm happy to inform you that he has currently completed his first two years of seminary (only four more to go!).
Shortly after he left, I received a text message from Michael wanting to know if I'd like to get coffee sometime.
What?! What timing. Clearly I didn't have to feel guilty about anything because my soon-to-be-seminarian friend and I had agreed to simply be friends...but I knew that I needed time to get my head on straight and really focus on what God was calling me to do after graduation (I was still discerning which year-long volunteer program I would be pursuing).
I accepted Michael's invitation to coffee with the caveat that it was platonic...and he agreed. He claims that he wasn't trying to pursue anything more than friendship, but I have somewhat of a difficult time fully believing that considering he also admits that he found me attractive...and (spoiler alert) he eventually put a ring on it. ;)
|Where we met up for our first shared coffee experience :)|
When I think back on that night I remember it being as good as it could have possibly been. We had great conversation and I felt like I could truly be myself with him. Any smiles or laughter exchanged was completely genuine and I found myself sharing things with him that some of my closest friends didn't even know about me.
I almost hated to say goodbye, but it was a weeknight and at some point we both needed to get home and prepare for whatever we had going on the next day. Two things had become very clear to both of us that night: 1) we got along extremely well and had a lot in common and 2) we probably didn't have any sort of romantic future together (wrong) because I had spoken a great deal about my involvement in the Catholic Church and he had shared that he was agnostic.
So there it was. We found in one another the potential for a good friend (albeit a good friend we were each attracted to)...but not too much more. He could still tell I had some walls up and he figured I would want to date someone who was more religious...and I was mentally thinking the same thing.
For the time being, that was it. But God had plans that neither of us knew about yet.
How did we eventually start dating? Stay tuned for part 3! To be continued further....
Update: Click here to read Part 3!