They met in the dormitory hall of Saint Albert's. Her boyfriend Tom was heading home for the weekend and she had come up to campus to have some fun. Afraid he might lose her to another chap he introduced her to his good friend Ivan. When they shook hands it was like magic, lightening, and nothing else either had known. Tom knew, at that moment he had lost her to another; the very thing he had been afraid would happen. Why is love at first sight so magical?
True to Tom, Ivan and I just stayed friends for well over a year and nothing more. Nevertheless, Tom, as well as, Peg knew it was over. It had been over for six months and they knew they could not "just be friends," it was too difficult. He called Ivan at home in New Jersey that summer just to let him know that He and Peg had broken up, and that he had seen the magic spark between them on that fateful day that Fall and wished them both much happiness.
Ivan wrote Peg to let her know that Tom had called him. He would be returning in the fall, but did not want to start dating right away for fear of a "rebound relationship." They both agreed to date others for a while.
Then one Saturday Peg was up typing a philosophy paper for one of the people and upon getting ready to leave, she bumped into Ivan in the hallway carrying fish he had caught in a nearby stream. Excited about the catch they set to cooking the trout.
Savaging they found a warming plate, a pan, and peanut oil. Laughing, cleaning, and cooking they were caught up in their own little world and not noticing the smell of the fish and peanut oil. However, the people on the hall did notice the stench. The combination was quite an odor and the laughter and merriment carried onto the floor was just too much.
Next thing Peg knew, she was being carried off and thrown out on the balcony. Charged with helping to create a stench on the floor she was now a prisoner. Ivan would have to pay restitution for the smell to rescue his woman in mischief. Candles were lite and air freshener sprayed. He now begged for the key to rescue his woman fair.
Walking her to her car that night they knew it was time to start dating. Scared, they both knew their relationship was serious and would have to work at working things out.
Working things out was easy. They rarely fought and when they did, they would sit down facing each other and talk it out. It was a mature relationship that neither one had invested in before. Summer was going to be long.
It was a long summer and letters back and forth seemed to take forever. Phone calls were expensive then and only happened once a month on the third Sunday of the month.
When the new term began, they were talking marriage and seeing a priest about marriage counseling. Their sessions were fun and serious. Ivan was especially afraid for me being young and free spirited. He was studying to be a doctor and held to his studies with great discipline. Father Stan seeing the opposites in our personalities helped us learn to work through our differences and turn them into strengths. He did advise that we buy two tubes of toothpaste to keep the peace.
Before Thanksgiving break we had decided to introduce our parents at Christmas break. However, upon Ivan's return from Thanksgiving break things had changed dramatically. He had been hit with the news that his parents were getting a divorce.
Ivan changed fundamentally. He was not the same man I had fallen madly in love with at first sight.
We broke up. We said good-bye, still loving each other.
I once heard it said, 'Don't be dismayed by good-byes. A farewell is necessary before you can meet again.'
We may never meet again, but I know we loved each other. There is an old saying, “That it is better to have loved and lost then to never love at all." I am grateful to have loved.