Alexandra and Alexander
How We Met
I sat in Principles of Biology on The Day. We took notes on mitosis. I remember that I deviated from my routine and put mascara on that morning. Professor Taylor announced that we would be completing a lab and that we would need partners. It was my first semester at MNU, so I could only name the girl called Tyler and the boy called Rico who sat behind me. Both Tyler and Rico had partners right away and I was a statue in the center of the room. My hand shot up and before I could stop them, the words, “Does anyone need a partner?” spilled from my mouth. A tall, dark haired boy raised his hand across the room. We made eye contact and before he could say anything, I pointed to the front of the room and said, “You grab the slides. I’ll fetch the microscope.”
We met back at my desk, he plugged the microscope in, and looked through the oculars, expecting to see something without having turned the damn thing on or placing the slide on the stage. “Your name is Alex, right?” he asked and I began to assemble the slides. I said yes and asked his name. When he said “I’m Alex, too,” was the first time I looked at him. His necklace with a cross and a peace sign caught my eye. Alex made me laugh and I caught him working off my lab report. We helped each other on The Day and we’ve done the same every day since.
How He Asked
I took an art history class along with biology during my first term at MNU. One of the course requirements was that we visit the Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art in Kansas City and report on our experience. I was into Alex and I wanted to spend time with him, so I invited him to tag along for an afternoon at the museum. We call this our first date. Two years pass and I suggest that we revisit the place where we first laughed and played together. Our trip into the city felt like a date night, leveled up. Where we might have eaten Mexican food and watched The Office at home – which is typically preferable to most anything else – we were having a night out on the town.
Our return to Nelson was sweeter than before. I thought about how far we had come in our relationship. Alex told me that we had dinner reservations and that we should “head toward the car at 6:00.” We descended the stairs into the courtyard where a reflection pool, a giant badminton birdie, and a crowd of headless statues reside. “I’ve always loved this view,” he said. “Here, let me take a picture of you by the shuttlecock,” I offered and turned my back to him, walking toward it. Alex took my hand in his and said, “I have a better idea.” When I turned around, Alex was kneeling in front of me.