Friday, February 10, 2023

Museum of Me: February 2023

Hello and welcome to The Museum of Me. February seems like the perfect time for this month's installation: How did you meet your spouse/significant other? 

My story starts in high school, in Great Books during my sophomore year. This was an English class where we read great books and then discussed them in class. Once we had finished reading that week's assigned great book, we were free to read whatever we chose. I sat next to Phyllis, a cool senior who read books I had never heard of, like Breakfast of Champions, The Onion Field, All Passion Spent, and Valley of the Dolls. They were not all great books, but Phyllis introduced me to Kurt Vonnegut and Vita Sackville-West. We became friends and I got to know her family - her brothers Jim, John, and Mark, and sister Nancy. 

Phyllis graduated two years before I did, but since I had become friends with the rest of the family, Jim and I started spending time together. He took me for motorcycle rides, we sat and talked, and I had dinner at his house. We were just friends without any romantic involvement but I'm grateful to Jim for getting me through some awkward high school years when I felt out of place everywhere. 

I'm not really sure I can explain this next leap, other than it happened somehow. My friendship with Jim kind of faded away, but then his younger brother John asked me if I wanted to go to a basketball game. He picked me up which gave me the idea that this might be a real "date" since he had to drive an extra half hour to do it. It was in the middle of winter and when I was getting into the passenger side to head home, I slipped on some ice and ended up under the car. John didn't run over me but helped me up and that marked the start of us spending time together. We also went on motorcycle rides and talked, but eventually, he held my hand and even kissed me. John's father was a very direct person that said exactly what he was thinking, so I was afraid of what he might say when I went to their house for dinner with John. And he didn't disappoint, saying "I've only got one other son for you to spend time with" as soon as I walked in the door. We all laughed and things were fine after that. 

John and I dated for a while but broke up when I went to college. I'm a year older than he is, so I was anxious to see what being on my own was like and we were four hours away from each other. He stayed friends with my mother (which I thought was weird at the time), so we started spending time together again after he graduated from college. He went to Florida for graduate school, I found a job and went with him, we "lived in sin" for a while (that's what my mother called it), and got married in 1981. We've been married ever since. Retirement is testing that a bit (I'm not cut out for all that togetherness!) but he's really a good person even on days when I wonder if we'll make it to our next anniversary. 

So that's how I met my spouse, through being friends with his sister Phyllis and older brother Jim. Jim has since passed away from malignant melanoma, but Phyllis and I email every week. She's still much cooler than I am and I'm lucky to count her as a friend and sister-in-law. I didn't just gain a husband when I married John, I became part of a wonderful family.

So how about you? I'd love to hear about how you met your spouse or significant other and hope to visit a few more Museum of Me posts to hear the stories or read them in the comments. We'll be back on the second Friday of March with a brand-new installation. Thank you for visiting The Museum of Me!


  1. What a fun post Bonny and what a nice story. So nice that you are close with John's family (and sad/sorry about Jim passing away). In the top picture of John's family is that a raccoon?????

  2. Lovely story, Bonny. Hang in there, retirement gets better ;) I promise.

  3. What a delightful story, Bonny! I noted that raccoon as well! There must be a story behind that! :)

  4. This is such a great story. I especially love the comment from your father-in-law!

    My husband and I met online, if you can believe it. He got his start in his career in the early days of the internet, and the line he always gives people is that after meeting his business partner online, he figured it'd be a good place to find a wife.

  5. I loved your meeting and dating story! You two were meant to be and isn't it funny how retirement togetherness is another testing of marriage :)

  6. (Definitely need the scoop on the raccoon. . . ) I love hearing the story of how you and John met, Bonny. In my post today, I wrote about "cosmic destiny" . . . and I think you and John fulfilled some "cosmic destiny" with your relationship, too! ;-) You are so fortunate to "land" in such a wonderful family. Thanks for sharing your story. XO

  7. Everybody is commenting on the raccoon. Around where I grew up that was totally normal. LOL

    Loved your story of meeting. I met Steve in high school, but we didn't become a couple until much, much later when I ended up working at a company where he worked too. As for retirement .................I hear you. Steve was a "traveling man" that worked long hours for his company AND had a long commute. I am not used to 24/7/365 husband. It just might kill me some days. LOL

  8. oh Bonny, what a great story! Marc and I met in college ... I can't imagine still being married to ANY of the guys I knew in high school. and I feel you about retirement ("in sickness and in health ... and never for lunch" as one of my friends likes to say). Thankfully we both have "other" interests, and it's still fun to come together at dinner time and catch up.

  9. What a fun story of how you and John met and became a couple. And yes, what about that raccoon. The photos are wonderful. I love them. I think Lance wore a similar kind of tux and I also had a long sleeved, high necked bridal gown. Those were the days. Lance and I knew who each other was by sight at a smallish college but had never spoken. The third Spring into my teaching career, I was getting ready to head to graduate school. We saw each other in church. He was with a girl from my hometown and I actually stopped to talk to her. He called and asked me to go out for ice cream the next weekend. We became a couple and he was wise enough to not dissuade me from graduate school - four hours away from Lincoln. We had a year's long distance relationship with occasional weekends together. I graduated in August and we were married in November.

  10. Strike that was in the third line!

  11. A really lovely story with a nice ongoing ending. Looking forward to the sequel re the raccoon.

    1. Thank you! You'll understand the raccoon(s) next week!

  12. What a great story and I love John's father's comment when you came for dinner! And that photo of you and John in your blue jeans from back in the day is fab. My mother called it living in sin when I moved in with Dale about 6 weeks before our wedding. I was divorced with a 4 year old at the time. LOL


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