Father’s Day ~ A Love Story

Stan and I met in a bar…

We did meet through mutual friends, but ~ we still met in a bar. Stan was a wildly sweet Jersey boy with a perfect flat-top and the bluest eyes I had ever seen. He decided he wanted to teach the girl from Kansas how to two-step. Yep, two-step…interesting. He took me in his arms in the middle of the dance floor and proceeded to swing me around, counting, “One, two, three. One, two, three. One, two, three.” “Umm, Stan ~ two-stepping only has two steps, not three,” I said.

So the Jersey boy failed in his attempt to teach me how to two-step, but he succeeded in making the girl from Kansas just a little weak in the knees. With his arm around my waist and my hand in his, I knew I was home…his arms were where I was supposed to be. I knew he was the one. The feeling was perfect. I looked into his sparkly, shiny, blue eyes, and I knew I had to get away.

We were both dating other people. I was dating a guy who was deployed to Iraq as part of Operation Desert Storm. The girl Stan was dating lived in Boston. I wanted no part of anything less than honorable but what I felt in Stan’s arms was magic.

Months went by, and Stan and I saw each other occasionally through our mutual friends. I loved seeing him and his sparkly eyes, but I managed to push thoughts of feeling at home in his arms to the back of my brain and concentrated on the guy I was dating. He was due to arrive back in the States, and I focused on that. When he got home and a little settled in, he decided it was time for a change from me, so he took me aside and said, “Jen, I just don’t love you…you don’t take my breath away.” Ouch! In those same months, Stan was also dumped by his girlfriend. She didn’t want to leave her family in Boston to become an Army wife.

Moving on…

Stan was on the periphery of my circle of friends. But the feeling of being in his arms seemed to always be at the forefront of my mind. Thoughts of his sparkly blue eyes made my heart melt.

July 27, 1991. It was a beautiful summer night. My girlfriends and I decided we were going to meet up with Stan and his group of friends. I’m not sure exactly how everything happened that night. I’m not sure if luck played a part, or the stars aligned perfectly, or my girlfriends arranged everything. But Stan and I ended up sitting side by side. We started talking. The words came effortlessly, and our conversation was comfortable. We talked and talked. It was then Stan, and I decided we would get married. He put his West Point ring on my left finger, and we talked and talked. We talked about staying in the Army for 20 years, having three sons (who would all go to West Point), retiring in New Hampshire, and living happily ever after. The magic was back.

Alright, so not all of what we talked about came true. We stayed in the Army for nine years, not 20. We had three kids, not three boys (I am sure they won’t all go to West Point). New Hampshire is out of the question…did you know it’s cold there?? But one thing has come true…happily ever after.

Stan’s sparkly, blue eyes and “two-stepping” prowess won my heart. So Happy Father’s Day to my sweet Jersey Boy who still can’t two-step to save his life but is the light of my life and the best father I could ever hope for…for the love of my children.

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