It’s been a while since my last post; a skewed work-life balance and a seriously ill step-daughter have kept me away from writing. I am pleased to say my step-daughter is now fully on the mend, my husband is back from visiting her in hospital in London and work and life are more balanced.
For today’s post, I would like to write a shamelessly romantic account of how my husband and I met:
It was a day like any other. I turned up to a certain north London girls’ school to teach 2 hours of trumpet. In the music corridor was a very tall man (obviously a teacher) examining the notice board. He gave me a broad warm grin and introduced himself as the new music teacher.
Over the course of the next few months we began talking more and more and we soon became friends. As a peripatetic music teacher working in 9 locations every week I was more used to casual (but not unkind) indifference from the busy full-time teachers in the schools where I worked. I struggled to make deeper connections with colleagues due to the simple fact I wasn’t around in the same place for long enough! I found this colleague’s friendly interest in me very charming and began to look forward to my weekly teaching slot more and more.
We discovered we had a lot in common: we are both brass musicians, teachers, taller than average (!) and have a Swedish connection. He is fully Swedish and I am one eighth Swedish on my mother’s side. Conversation began to flow and I became increasingly drawn to this warm and friendly man.
Working with someone is a fantastic opportunity to get to know the real person and not just their “best behaviour” date persona. I saw this colleague in autumn, winter, spring and summer. I saw him when I was tired and when I was energised. When I was in a good mood and a bad mood. I saw him in many different situations, including dealing with stroppy teenage girls – and anyone who can do this well deserves respect!
Then one day, as we greeted each other in the corridor, a little voice in my head said, “hello future husband”. (Thankfully, I did not say this out loud!!!) But, like a freight train, it hit me. This was the man I was going to marry. I was stumped. I had never had never thought that about ANYONE before. We were not even dating at this point! This must surely be a sign to take our friendship to the next level. And that summer, after a year of working together, we went on our first date.
We agreed to meet after school on the last day of term for coffee. In true Sod’s Law style I suddenly realised I had an issue with my music service timesheets and had to visit the Head Office to sort it out. If I didn’t then I wouldn’t get paid and money was tight so I couldn’t afford any mistakes. Thankfully, my sanguine colleague was more than happy to meet me later than planned in a different location next to Head Office.
So there we were; me feeling stressed and hassled after rushing to Head Office to sort out my salary and him looking slightly disheveled in the work clothes he had been wearing all day. Neither of us had a plan for where to go, neither of us had showered and changed for this date. This was a stark contrast to my previous dating life: getting specially dressed up, planning the ‘perfect’ evening and generally trying to exude perfection. But here I was; not dressed up at all, no idea where I was going and it was all very…exciting! We were being ourselves, with all our glorious imperfections, and I knew that the evening was going to be special.
Tune in next time for part 2!