It's not over till it's over. It's not over after 40 years of an abusive marriage. It's not over after five years of being divorced. It's not over after unsuccessful dating.
Nancy had been unhappily married for a very long time, over 40 years. Her husband had been abusive, and she finally got the strength to leave him.
She was alone for five years after that, until her daughter persuaded her to try internet dating. She did, and one profile caught her eye.
"He liked to do many of the same things that I liked to do."
They took things slowly. They corresponded for almost a month before they decided to finally meet. Most couples meeting for the first time usually pick a coffee shop in the afternoon if they want to keep the date casual. If they're more willing to take more of a risk, they might select a restaurant for dinner.
If they're being creative, one of them might suggest something related to an interest they both have — an art gallery, for instance, or a sporting event, a museum.
Steve went a different way.
"I will never forget that first date. We went to a park where we could walk and talk. Before I knew it, he had me swinging and going down the slide. I felt like a little girl again."
That wasn't the end of the date. "We drove out and watched the sunset. I'd never realized how beautiful a sunset could be."
For their second date, Steve arranged something equally unusual — a camping trip.
"After a fun-filled day, we sat by the campfire listening to music on his phone. The weather was just right. There was a beautiful full moon, and the sky was full of twinkling stars. Suddenly, a beautiful song came on, and without saying a word, he just stood up and took my hand. We began to dance.
"The moon was glistening through the trees, and the stars were shining so brightly. It was such a beautiful and romantic setting. In the distance, I remember seeing some guys standing there watching us, but it was like we were oblivious to everything around us except each other.
"As Steve held me tightly in his arms, swaying to the music, I felt like a fairy princess. I looked up and thanked the Man Above for leading me to this."
Nancy says that was the moment, dancing in the wilderness with a man she barely knew (and some strangers watching), that she knew "fairy tales do come true no matter how old you are."
"Never would I have believed that I would go from being abused to this."
The ironic part of this story is that Steve had been in an abusive marriage, too. In his case, the abuse wasn't physical, but emotional.
Nancy finds it amazing that after so many years of unhappiness, they've found each other.
"As of today, we're still together, laughing and enjoying each other. Never in a million years would I have thought that this would be possible. I'm just beginning to live, and it feels great! I guess you could say dreams can come true. I've finally met a man who has showed me what it's like to be happy and love again."
Did love come along when you least expected it? Send your tale, along with your questions, problems and rants to [email protected] And check out my e-books, "Dear Cheryl: Advice from Tales from the Front" and "I'll Call You. Not."
Photo credit: scottwebb at Pixabay