Wednesday, April 25, 2012

October 19, 2006

The First Date

Yesterday, on the facebook timeline, there was one lonely status that appeared in the year 2006.  It was from October 20 and it simply stated, "super duper happy right now".  That was the day after my first date with Marc, my now husband.

I'm pretty sure on this here blog I've written about how we met, and I've written about the "third date" when I knew I loved him, and I've certainly written about a million other things.  But what I am not sure about is if I've written about the first date.  The best first date I have ever had.  (And yes, that was my last first date, so it really was my best first date in the history of my world.)

It was a Thursday.  I was nervous.  VERY nervous.  I usually didn't get this nervous for dates because I figured if it didn't work out, so be it.  But for this particular event, my knees were weak.  As I drove to meet him after work at South Street Brewery I called my mom in a panic, as any adult woman would do.  (Um, who was that girl? Grow some balls, Emily!)  Finally made it to dinner and there he was.  We sat at a table, ordered beers and food and he talked.  I watched ESPN as my foot was shaking under the table.  I had a hard time talking, so I listened for the most part.  It got easier, though, once my nerves calmed down.  I do remember I ordered something off the appetizer menu, a pizza, and he made fun of me for it.  It'd be awhile before I did that again!

After dinner we met at his apartment so we could change out of our work clothes and in to clothes more suitable for a cold night at a football game.  If dinner was the opening act, the football game was the main event.  UVa was playing UNC.  I think!?  Sad that I am not positive, but I guess it didn't really matter.  While he changed in his apartment, I like the lady I am, changed in the parking lot next to my car.  No way was I going up in to this guy's apartment and getting naked.  No way, no how.  I figured everyone should see me instead of just him! HA!  God, I'm weird.

After we changed we headed over to the stadium. We walked.  In the dark. Down a dark alley.  YES, I thought he was going to murder me.  I'm not sure I've ever walked that fast.  Not even in NYC!  And I'm pretty sure I kept my distance too, in case I had to make a run for it.  What was I thinking?!

Make it to the game and it.was.perfect!  The conversation was easy.  We joked. We laughed.  We talked about everything.  Couldn't have dreamed up a more perfect date.  (Those were the days when I was head over heels in love with college sports. These days I don't have the luxury of time to care.)  It was just easy to be around him and I found myself really enjoying what he was saying.  During this whole date my mom and friend Sharon were using binoculars to try and spy on me!  I should ask if they ever found me because I can't remember.  (Gosh I can't remember a lot of that night, oops!)

So UVa wins, game is over, have to walk back to his apartment to my car.  I wasn't nearly as worried about him being a murderer at this point, but it did cross my mind.

Get to the car....and this is where it gets oh so weird!  I get in thinking, "Alright, nice night, it's late, I have a 30 minute drive ahead of me, gotta get going."  I'm pretty sure he was thinking, "Oh man, great night, lets keep talking and listen to a lot of DMB songs."


He made me listen to SO many Dave Matthews Band songs.  During those days I mildly liked DMB, nothing like the love I have for them now.  He just kept telling me to listen to this lyric, and how about this one part in a song, and blah blah blah.  I wanna say it was like 1 AM or something.  I had work the next day, I had a dog at home, I had a weird guy standing outside of my car that won't let me leave.  GOD HELP ME!

Finally I was able to pry his fingers off my car and head home.

The next morning I knew I'd have to give my impression to my carpool mates, Gary and Jeff.  Sure enough, as soon as I got in, they asked me how it went.

"Perfect.  The most perfect date ever.  He is resume good.  Everything about him on paper looks awesome."


Never trust a woman when she says "but", it's not gonna be good.

"But, he's too nice." (Seriously, 26 year old Emily, seriously?!)

Oh God did Gary and Jeff jump ALL over that!!!!  Too nice, too nice?  What does that mean?  They asked why it didn't work out with other guys.  I said, "Because they were assholes."

DING DING DING. They basically told me I was being dumb and to give the nice guy a chance.

I mean, I guess I could do that.

After their pep talk I figured he really was nice and I really did have a perfect evening with him.  Minus the creepy music part of the night.  (As you can imagine, I still give him a ton of shit for that.)

So on that Friday in October, I wrote "super duper happy right now".  It's so crazy that for an entire year of status updates Facebook chose that one little line to keep!

Anyhoo, I was feeling great.  Best first date ever.  Life was good.  I was happy.

Until Saturday morning happened.

I was laying in bed, it was very early, I was blind as a bat and groggy, when I received a text message.  A text from Marc asking if I WANTED TO DRIVE TO ROANOKE WITH HIM TO HELP CELEBRATE HIS PARENT'S ANNIVERSARY.

Um, no way, no how. Nu uh.  Two hours in a car with this guy? What if it was boring after 30 minutes.  Meeting the whole fam? Staying the night?  Two hours back.  "You have GOT to be joking!" I thought.  My heart was beating insanely fast at this point and I was hot and bothered.  What do I write back? How do I gently tell this bafoon no way jose?

So I was an adult and told the truth!  I let him know that on Saturdays I lay in bed until noon and I watch football all day.  Hand to God that is what I did for a long, long time.

He was gracious about it and said he understood.  I am sure he thought I was lying.  I am also sure this was one of the many times he thought he was dead in the water.

Now, I will admit that after meeting his family I now see why he invited me.  They are awesome! Easy to talk to and get along with and it wouldn't have been weird at all.  So meeting them would have been easy.  Still not sure about the car ride and staying over, though. :-)

During the Monday drive in with my COT (inside joke) I let them know about this huge red flag of him inviting me to meet his family after one date.  Gary thought nothing of it.  Thought it was a nice gesture and that I should have gone.  Mental note, don't listen to Gary, EVER!  I don't actually remember what Jeff said, but I am sure it was along the lines of "don't be an idiot and over think this."  Even if it's not what he says, it sounds good now!

So, a special shout out to Gary and Jeff for my pep talks.  They really did help me stay in this relationship in those early days.  They saw what I couldn't, Marc was perfect, he was especially perfect for me.

Ladies, always go for the nice guy, you'll never be sorry!

To Emily, circa 2006, trust your feelings and go for it, he'll end up giving you the three most perfect beings you've ever laid eyes on, and he'll protect you and take care of you in your dark moments, and make you laugh and sing in your brightest moments.  He's nice, go for it!  Stop thinking so damn much!

And that mah friends was our first date.  The perfect, nice, resume good guy won over a hard headed, bitchy, lonely gal.

For the record, every time someone in my life met him, they agreed that he was "too nice"! HA!

Monday, April 23, 2012

No Clever Title

Since becoming an adult I've had a few (ok, many) people I went to college with tell me that I am/was scary.  One time I said back, "I didn't even talk, how was I scary?"  And they told me that my silence was pretty dang scary.

Is it wrong that it makes me laugh?!

Looking back, I probably was pretty nasty.  I liked who I liked, didn't like who I didn't like, and there was no mistaking either category.  Hopefully in my old age I've gotten nicer.

Still laughing though!

This weekend I got to do THREE AMAZING THINGS!  Saturday I read an entire book!  First page to the very last.  It was "Guts" by Kristen Johnston.  Fantastic book. I highly recommend it.

Sunday I watched an entire movie.  First minute to the very last.  It was "Men Who Stare at Goats".  Can't lie, it was weird.  But mildly entertaining.

Then Sunday night I watched 2 1/2 hours of television, by myself.  RHOA reunion, RHONJ premiere, and WWHL.  If you are a Bravo fan you know what all of those acronyms mean.  If you aren't, I feel bad for you, son.  Side note, I want Andy Cohen to be my gusband.  He or Anderson Cooper. Or both. I dunno.

Anyhoo, I think that's all I have for now.  The weekend was great.  The kids, for now, are being good, and it's freezing outside. Random.

Ok, buh bye.

Friday, April 20, 2012

The Stone

"I was just wondering if you'd come along
Hold up my head when my head won't hold on
I'll do the same if the same's what you want"

Sometimes life gets very messy.  It can be a good mess, having to move, adding a family member, getting a new job.  Or it can be a very, very bad mess.  I won't go in to all the possibilities, but I'm sure you can come up with your own.

During these messy times you can react a bunch of different ways.  I am one that tends to lash out and then cry.  It's what I do.  I'm ok with that.

The other thing I do?  I lean on Team Patrouch.  They are my rock, or in this case, for this blog post, they are my "stone".  

I've loved DMB's "The Stone" since it was released on "Before These Crowded Streets" way back in 1998.  LOVE THIS FREAKING SONG IN A BIG, BIG WAY.  The lyrics, the music, the jam at the end during live shows (and I am not one who likes jams).  Every single part of this song I love and adore.  Always have, always will.  Every child of mine has had to listen to me quietly sing this song in their ear when I've had them perched up on my chest, trying to calm them down.  It always worked, too!  Maybe they passed out because they didn't want to listen to my singing, but they passed out!

As I work through a messy time in my life, my brain always comes back to the Team.  My buddies, my gang, my best friends in life.  I'm not sure how I'd handle any of the roller coaster moments of life without them.  They make me laugh, ease my troubles when I'm sad, let me cry, let me yell, and are always there with a hug!

(As I type this Miss CJ keeps reminding me of just how "present" she is in my life. HA!)

Thanks, Team! I love you in a big, big way...almost as much as "The Stone". HA!

"I need so, To stay in your arms, see you smile, hold you close."

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

I Wear My Zeta T-shirt

I finally got to meet the Longwood Zetas.  Final verdict: awesome!

These girls have got their sh!t together!  At one point I turned to my pledge sister Dawn and said, "We never cared this much about Zeta when we were here."  They have chapter meetings, collect dues, they do charity work, they even wrote their own Creed.  All of them can bust out some facts like you would not believe, too.  They knew family trees of girls I was in school with and I didn't even know them!  I guarantee if we tried to keep our own Zeta going we would have failed miserably.  We would have thrown up our hands and just sat around and drank beers.  So I give them a lot of credit.

Not to mention, they're just cool chicks.  I really truly liked them.  As we stood and watched the world go by I could see the other non-Zeta girls vs. the Zeta girls.  The Zeta girls were much more like what I remember of us all than the other girls were.  I saw a lot of jeans and t-shirts, a few Hippie clothing items, and I liked it.  They are as cool and chill as us.  Yay!

But one thing that I find HILARIOUS!  They have family names.  Which makes sense, it's much quicker to say that someone is in the CBF family than list out all the members.  But some of the names are so funny.  I like mine, Cute Badass Family, so I got lucky.

I'm glad I got to go down there and finally meet them face-to-face.  Not to mention I got the Zeta t-shirt that was created the semester I pledged!!  I was a complete lameo, though, and was back at the hotel by 9 pm.  In my defense we started drinking at 11:30 am.  So maybe only half lameo.  :-)  I'd like a do over though and spend a bit more time there.  I was in a funk and not up to par.  I also didn't get to really hang out with a lot of them.

So I really may be back for Oktoberfest.  Hopefully this time I won't have to keep running to the bathroom to pump.  Everyone knows you're only cool if you can drink beer and pump your boobs during a party. HAHAHA!

And I have to give a special shout out to my son, Chaz.  I'm glad I got to adopt you!  And that I only had to give you one smack bottom.

You girls are awesome and make me proud!  ZLAM!

Here's my family! So glad my big, Lori, got to come!

And the old lady crew! Too bad we didn't get a pic with Sally!

Thursday, April 5, 2012

Zeta Zeta What's It To Ya

So, in the Spring of 1999 I joined the fraternity of Zeta Tau Alpha, ZTA for short.  ZTA was founded at Longwood, which makes it the Alpha Chapter.  Pretty big deal, I guess, in the Greek world.

Well, a few years ago Nationals decided to suspend ZTA at Longwood, and reinstate them in the Spring of 2013.  I am not sure what exactly happened or why this all happened, I've heard some things, but don't know the whole story.  So, it would be really hard for me to judge either side for what took place.

I do know, that no matter the reason, I am bummed it happened.  I am bummed for every one involved, for all the alum of Longwood, and ZTA as a whole.

But what's interesting is the group of girls at Longwood decided to keep their group going, but under the name Zeta Chi Alpha or ZXA.  To me, it shows a true dedication to their fraternity and what they meant to each other.  I am sure others find this not to be true. But if I were 18-23 and I was at Longwood, I may have done the exact same thing.

You see, when I was in school ZTA was my life.  My sophomore year I lived on the ZTA hall, all my friends were ZTA's, and they are who I hung out with.  MY LIFE!  After school, not as much, but I have still remained connected somehow, someway to the Longwood girls.

This raises the question, did I join ZTA for the National aspect of it or for the Longwood aspect of it?

Easy answer - Longwood.  I joined for Crystal Snead and Allie Adams.  I stayed because of all my other sisters.  And, luckily, I found my two very best friends in life because of the Longwood Zetas.

Where am I going with this?  Next weekend I am packing my bags and traveling back to my alma mater.   I will be meeting the girls of ZXA.  I will be meeting my family, which has been continued since I left in 2002.  I will be trying to figure out if any of my pass downs are still around. I know that's next to impossible because it's been so long. (Pass downs happen when you are a senior, it's a chance to give away all your Zeta crap to the younger girls.  There are usually tears involved.)  Well, I am not sure how I'll feel once I step foot on campus and realize there is no Zeta Tau Alpha.  There's no ZTA.  Man, that's weird.  But there is still the lineage of what I left.  There is still a group of girls that were recruits from girls that I recruited.  So, are they the same fraternity I joined?  Or are they totally a separate thing? How will I feel when ZTA comes back to Longwood and ZXA is still around?!  Will I accept the new girls of ZTA?  I've read that Nationals wants no help from the alum of Alpha chapter.  Not sure if that's true, but if it is, it makes me sad.  It makes me sad that we can't help with a chapter we loved.

Overall I am very excited about returning to my old stomping grounds and meeting some cool ass chicks.  At least they seem cool on Facebook!  And, the cherry on top, is that my pledge sister Alicia will be with me the whole weekend!  AND my big sister, Lori, and my pledge sister, Dawn, will be there for the day.  Plus a pretty big group of girls I was in school with.  Lots of laughing and story telling are in my future.  Yes, I am scared that I'll be an old lady dork and want to fall asleep at 10 pm, and sip on water in between each drink!  But I am excited.

Truly, my biggest concern, is not knowing the music that will be played! I am so out of touch!

Longwood Zetas, plus whatever letters are behind it, I will always hold you close to my heart.  I look back fondly on my days at Longwood, and hope my sisters do as well!