Lucy and Stuart

How We Met

This should be titled ‘How They Asked’ ! Flashback 23 years to my college days in the lake district UK and long summer days with my best friend Stuart; he was my shoulder to cry on when things weren’t going well with my boyfriend, we biked and played chess and imagined how our lives would be and how we would still be friends even though I was moving to the USA for a year. We waved goodbye in the summer of 1995. Little did I realize I would never live in the UK again. We began our lives and tried to stay in touch but before social media life was a little different letters were frequent to begin with but petered out as life got in the way and phone calls were expensive and a luxury saved for Christmas. Time passed and unintentionally we grew apart though he was never far from my mind. Fast forward 12 years and a really icky divorce on my end and me a single young mother of 3 on a trip home to the UK. The first thing I did when I got home was to call Stuart to see how he was and we decided to meet. I was SO happy to see him. We hugged for what seems like forever. And then he told me he had just gotten married and was excited to share his news. I told him of my heart break and we talked for hours and hours about the years we had lost. We promised this time we really would stay in touch. The years went by with face book happy birthdays and liked photographs of our separate lives.

Fast forward again to 2013 and a chance meeting in Philly for a business meeting he had, We had grown older but he had just gotten better looking as the years had passed and despite another 6 years apart our f friendship was stronger than ever! Promises were made once again to really stay in touch and after he left it felt like there was a huge hole in my heart as I realized what a genuine connection we had. Then at Christmas of 2014 and a flying visit for me to the UK the stars finally aligned and we understood that what we had felt all these years could maybe be something pretty special and so we decided to embark on a long distance relationship and give us a shot. We met whenever school holidays allowed ( I teach kindergarten) and we realized that we wanted to be together more permanently. Stuart had begun working on his business visa prior to our meeting again and we knew that when that was granted we wanted to be together more permanently.

How They Asked

September 16th of 2016 was the day that changed everything. It was the day he was going to his visa interview and the excitement was palpable even through his texts. I woke up that morning eager to start the rest of our lives and opened my phone to a text that read “I’m so sorry baby” my heart was pounding as I read through the streams of texts outlining how his visa had been rejected on a technicality and how now he wouldn’t even be allowed to enter the USA. I pushed the feelings of nausea down and called him through bleary sleep filled 6 am eyes. All he could do is keep saying “I’m so sorry baby, I’m so so sorry” so I said ” marry me” He kept talking and I asked if he had heard me “I said marry me sweetheart, this way we can be together” There was a pause while this man who I had known for ever let my words sink in.

I hadn’t known I would say them, it was probably the most spontaneous thing I have ever done. We had both been hurt in love and weren’t sure how we felt about marriage any more, we lived 3500 miles away from each other but when faced with such an obstacle trying to keep us apart it suddenly felt like the most important question in the world so I knew I had to ask. “Yes” he said through tears of disappointment and now joy, “yes oh course yes, it’s always been yes” So now I am in middle of applying for US citizenship and then when that is granted we apply for a K 1 visa and then we have just 90 days to get married. We can’t set a date because we are at the mercy of US immigration and their timelines but hey I have waited half my life to be with this man, I can wait a little while longer.