Beyond Blue

Beyond Blue

Making Lemonade from Lemons on Valentine’s Day: A Romantic Tale

heart candles.jpegIn order to move beyond their dark days, most depressives master the lesson on how to make lemonade from lemons.
For Valentine’s Day, here’s a romantic tale on just that: how a friend of mine turned an embarrassing situation into the best thing that ever happened to her….

Back when I began my writing career drafting instructions on how to bury St. Joseph (he’s known to make real estate sell) as part of the “St. Joseph’s Home Sales Kit” for Roman, Inc., a religious giftware company in the suburbs of Chicago, I befriended a woman who worked in the IT department. Aneta, a spritely Polish babe, handled the technological emergencies of computer-challenged folks such as myself who might, say, send an off-color joke to the entire company by accidentally pressing “Reply All” to an e-mail.
Aneta and I rode the same train to Roselle, Illinois. One morning on our train ride, Aneta filled me in on why she wasn’t driving to work. On December 7th, 1994 (the anniversary of Pearl Harbor), she had crashed her car into the front of Pick Kwik. The fire department was immediately dispatched. For most of the guys, her wreck was worth more laughs than an episode of “Seinfeld.” As if Aneta wasn’t humiliated enough.
One paramedic, however, didn’t mock or jeer. He sat down next to Aneta and told her not to feel bad.


“We all do stupid things,” he said, as they watched her totaled car get towed off.
In those five minutes, she fell in love with him. He was the sweetest, most compassionate man she had ever met. And as sure as Cinderella or Ariel (in “The Little Mermaid”) were when they met their men, she wanted to marry him.
“So I have a plan,” she told me.
“You want me to crash Eric’s car into another store so you can see him again?” I wondered, which would have been easy given my driving history.
“I’m going to pretend that I’m doing a story about paramedics for a class project,” she explained. “But I can’t do it alone. Will you go to the fire department with me, and act like you are my partner on this assignment?”
“Of course,” I said. I was used to pursuing dreams in a roundabout way.
My friend had plotted the details of her scheme a few months back, but she was waiting for the right accomplice, a crazy gal with whom to pull it off.
Enter moi.
So after lunch one day, I held my nervous co-worker’s hand and prayed with her before she picked up the phone to schedule an interview with Bob, the kindly paramedic. Three days later, the two us tried to stop giggling as we approached the fire department.
As Aneta posed one question after the other, peering into her true love’s blue eyes, I scribbled copious notes as if my final grade depended on this fictitious paper.
I’m not sure of all the details after that. All I know is now Aneta and Bob are happily married with three kids. Neither of us works for Roman. And Aneta hasn’t driven into a Pick Kwik since.


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  • S

    What an adorable story Therese..I loved the part where you write “she was waiting for the right accomplice, a crazy gal with whom to pull it off…Enter moi”
    I couldnt stop giggling but lots of credit goes to Aneta for weaving her own beautiful love story…The hardest challenges I guess is not to Love someone but to let them love you back whole heartedly. Kudos to Aneta and her partner in crime 😉

  • anita

    This is an awesome story! Love does exist! There is someone out there for everyone! Thanks for posting!

  • Karen

    I fell in love with my husband for the very same reason Aneta fell for hers. His reaction to my stunts/accidents was never to laugh, but was always concern and patience. You find someone like that and you never let him go!

  • jeanne

    AWESOME story….thank you for sharing it.:-)

  • Vanessa

    I loved this story! Did she ever confess it was a scheme to speak with him. This is a true love story because we all know that it is one in a million!!

  • lynne r. stewart

    so happy to read this and thanks for sharing. i have been blessed after a divorce and 13 years looking for my true love, that i recently ran into a man i graduated with 31 years ago. it was immediate. it wasn’t long that i discovered he had a crush on me in 7th grade. we have much in common and ofter finish each other’s sentances or comment on things at the same time…

  • http://AddaURLtothiscomment Ksenia

    Thank you for this beautiful story :'( I had someone like that but I let him go due to my lack of self confidence… I still think about him fondly often. Thank you and thanks to Aneta for this inspiring, uplifting story!

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