Jon and I met in college. We were both business majors at the University of MA, Amherst and in about 4 of the same classes. I'd love to say that I saw the room light up when he walked in and I knew we were meant to be together, but that would be a lie. I didn't notice him at all for the year or two that we were in the same classes. He says he noticed me, but I guess we'll never know if that's true - he loves to flatter me. I was a very driven and aggressive student, while Jon was reserved and shy.
We finally met when one of our instructors paired us up for an internship at a non-profit organization as part of an extra credit project. We were introduced, made plans to show up at our new job later that week, and went our separate ways. The next year went by no different than the others – Jon and I got together to work on the internship when we needed to, we sometimes talked about other classes, we IMed each other ever so often to ask about a new project or to grab each other’s notes for class. But we lived separate lives – he with his friends from a few towns over, me with my friends and drama from UMASS. We were polite but indifferent toward one another. Again, Jon always tells me that he thought I was cute, but a bit scary – but he flatters me.
Our paths started to cross more and more as we ran into each other in the interview waiting room in the middle of our senior year. It ends up that we were both going for the same job for a small start-up company in CT. This was his first and only interview; it was my one of many. We ran into each other again in CT when we both showed up for a second interview for the same company – I asked him if he was stalking me. After the second interview, we checked in with each other a bit more to see if the other heard from Sightlines, the small start-up we both interviewed for. When I finally got the phone call with an offer, Jon was the first person I called. It ends up we both had offers and we both accepted.
At the end of that year we were both looking for a place to live in CT, but neither one of us could afford to live alone so we decided to live together. And by “decided”, I mean that I spent about an hour bugging Jon with reasons for living together until I wore him down and he said “yes”. And that’s when our two very different paths became one.
I think it’s important that I mention that Jon and I were living very different lives back then. I spent 3.5 of my 4 years in college living on campus, being an RA, participating in almost every club, and working as a Security Supervisor for the UMASS Student Security. Most of my friends also lived on campus and we spent our nights going from dorm to dorm or from one Amherst bar to another. We were rowdy and dramatic. In the middle of my senior year I finally moved off campus with my 2 guy friends and a girl roommate that we never saw. We did almost everything together, had the same classes, dated within our “group”. I had a “serious” boyfriend almost the entire time in college…but rarely the same one. There was Aaron Freshman year, Matt Sophomore to Junior year, and finally Gianni Senior year. By the time I graduated from college and moved in with Jon, I was “head over heels in love” with Gianni and thought that was it.
I always thought that was it. A bit dramatic, but I’m a passionate being – what can I say. Every relationship was dramatic and forever. And they never lasted more than a year.
Jon’s life couldn’t be more different. He was dating his high school sweetheart until his senior year when they decided to take a break while she went away someplace for a semester abroad. Aside from the obligatory 2 years on campus, Jon lived off campus about 30 minutes away in his home town of Northampton, MA. He spent almost all of his time hanging out with his buddies from home. When he and his ex broke up, he stayed single. He saw another girl but it was never serious. By the time we moved in together, he was getting back in touch with the ex and they were considering working things out.
So in June of 2001 we finally moved in to our 2 bedroom, 2 bath apartment in East Haven, CT. That’s when our two very separate and different lives began to intertwine.