Erin and Caleb

How We Met

Caleb and I met my freshman year of high school when I was 14 and he was 16. We had seen each other in passing for weeks in the hallways, where he and his friend, Matt, would wave and say hello, calling me by name. However, I didn’t know them at all, and being myself I would just ignore them or shoot them a look (I had quite the signature RBF). A mutual friend of ours was having a big “sweet 16” party and we both attended – me with all of my girls and him with the junior class boys.

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About midway through the night, not having seen him yet, I heard my name through the crowd on the dance floor. Matt was staring at me with this giant grin on his face like he had just won the lottery because he knew this was yet another opportunity to bother me. He ran my way with Caleb in tow. After a few dances with the two of them, followed by formal introductions and laughs from the preceding weeks, Caleb and I were left alone. He asked me to slow dance and the rest is history… nearly nine years later with forever to go. Mr. and Mrs. Donnelly – June 14, 2019.

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how they asked

Once I heard the camera click behind me, I knew this was the moment I had been waiting for since I stood out on the dance floor holding his hand at the age of 14…

Caleb had just changed jobs and had taken a week off before starting the new position to relax and reorganize. I was in the middle of a busy week during a fall semester of grad school at Boston University. Caleb has always expressed a love for the fall and the foliage, and we’ve always tried to make it up to the White Mountains every year to do some “leaf peeping” as I call it. I had plans with my roommates to study over the weekend, but Caleb was begging me to go up north since it was a peak week for all of the colors. Thursday was the only day of the week that I didn’t work late or have a late class, so I reluctantly agreed to make the drive even though the books were calling my name. My first suspicion that someone was up came when Caleb pulled up to my classroom building in jeans and a quarter zip for a hike… jeans… I was in yoga pants and sneakers.

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He’s been an athlete all his life, including D1 basketball at Northeastern University, so his sweatpants and shorts supply is unlimited, yet he was wearing jeans. Fast forward to us making it up to the mountains with Caleb checking his phone too many times for me to count, we started the climb at our favorite spot. With a crowd at the top, my suspicions died down a little, until I saw a couple with a very nice camera eyeing us. I sat down close to the edge and waited for Caleb to join me. As he sat by my side, I leaned against him and felt his knees shaking.

Once I heard the camera click behind me, I knew this was the moment I had been waiting for since I stood out on the dance floor holding his hand at the age of 14. I don’t remember a single word he said, I just remember the way he was looking at me. In one of our favorite spots surrounded by our favorite season, I said “yes” to the person I have always been sure of.

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