Every time I post that Derek and I met on MySpace I get the best comments and direct messages. I usually reply with, “Oh yeah, I wooed him with my customized backgrounds and featured songs.”
So in honor of Valentine’s day, I thought it would be fun to share our MySpace love story, of how we came to meet.
It starts in Switzerland…
In 2003 Derek traveled Europe solo. He met new friends who he still keeps in touch with. He saw beautiful parts of the world- some of which we’ve been able to travel back to together these last few years.
Like Derek, close friends of mine from high school, set out on a similar adventure to travel Europe that year.
While staying in a hostel in Switzerland the three crossed paths and became fast friends. They shared stories about themselves, and created memories together they still talk about today.
After a month or so of traveling Alishea and Katie returned home with photographs and stories. Some of both were about and of Derek. The night they shared these stories with me was the night I was first introduced to Derek.
In that trip Derek did a lot of soul searching. He decided to change careers from an Environmental Scientist to a Chiropractor. This meant a move out to California to go back to school.
In late March of 2007, I created a new MySpace account and was searching through “friends of friends” to find people to add to my contacts.
I came across Derek’s profile page in Ali’s group of Top Friends. Oh yes, it’s all coming back to you now. I said “Top Friends.”
Remembering the stories about Derek, I looked through his profile. I had to verify this was the same guy, after all.
On April 29th I sent him an email.
The email said, “I’m Ali’s friend from Miami. You seem to be my kind of person. So I just wanted to say hi…”
In which he replied, “Any friend of Ali’s has to be quite all right, so I’m sure you’re my kind of person too. Your son is adorable by the way…”
That was the beginning of it all.
From April till November Derek and I sent long pages of emails back and forth. We took time to get to know each other.
Honestly, it’s so fun to look back at the emails now and see how flirty we were being. Along with the lengthy, flirty emails we exchanged pictures of sunrises and sunsets.
Being on the East coast in Miami, I sent the sunrises when I would go out on my early morning runs. And with Derek on the West coast in the Bay Area he, sent the most beautiful sunsets.
It was around mid November when we exchanged phone numbers.
Afraid to mess up the bond we’d created over the Internet, we cautiously proceeded with text messages for the rest of month.
Oh how I wish we still had those texts.
The night Derek actually called me reminds me of being in high school. The nervousness, the butterflies, the screaming girls.
Yes, I said screaming girls. He happened to call during a girls night. And you have to understand, my friends had been hearing about Derek since April… remember, it was November.
And with the screaming they physically wrestled me for the phone because I didn’t want to pick up. I mean who wants to have that first conversation with their myspace crush in front of friends?
Eventually I pushed the girls out of the house. And while Landon slept, I walked outside, paced around the driveway and then finally made the call.
Derek was charming and funny, as he was in his emails.
We stayed up all night talking, laughing and discussing what we thought the other person might have sounded like.
After that night, we spoke almost everyday.
Almost a full year after our first email interaction. February of 2008 was my 25th birthday, and I invited him to fly to Miami for it.
He could have justified the trip as a way to see Ali again, but we both knew it was more than that.
Derek flew out and when I picked him up at that airport I like to say it was love at first real sight. He thinks maybe it was just a verification of the love and admiration that was already there.
We’ve been together ever since…
There is more to our story, but Myspace is where it began.
I know it’s easy and fun to laugh at the idea of meeting on MySpace, but I am so thankful we did.
Not only did it allow Derek and I to connect across the country, but who can honestly say that they have their first interactions and conversations written down somewhere?
We can. And I love that.
I also love that looking back at these 12 years we have been through and done so much. We took a chance on love, and we took a chance on eachother.
And God has grown us together and individually. It really has been such a journey. One I would retake again and again with him.
Happy Valentine’s Day everyone.