February 12th, 2012

Window shot

Love in the Office - Current Love by Kai Strand

As February’s Share The Love theme progresses, we move away from the Industry Love stories and into a subject more closely related to Valentine’s Day, which we celebrate on Tuesday. This week my guests and I will share stories about our CURRENT LOVE.

One day I was walking up a hallway at work and glanced into an office that was normally empty. I made eye contact with an occupant sitting behind the bare desk. He wore a gray suit and a disinterested expression. It was obvious he was filling out paperwork for the open systems engineer position we were interviewing for. I continued past the office as if he hadn’t just made my heart skip a beat. As soon as I’d cleared the doorway I broke into a run. I ran straight to the reception desk and asked the girl, “Who is that?” She giggled. “I know, cute, huh?” she replied. She pulled out his resume and cover letter. “His name is Glen.” We poured through the documents and learned all we could. I know SO illegal, let’s not think about that part.

It was awhile before he got the job and by then I was dating someone else. A bunch of us at work were the same age and would often go out together in a group. We’d go out for happy hour, but more and more, Glen and I would end up the last two there. We’d switch to coffee and talk until 1:00 am sometimes.

We got a new boss and he thought my support position would be better positioned in the back of the building with engineering instead of up front with the sales people. I was so insulted. I went from having my own office to sharing an office with Glen. It felt like a demotion and poor Glen had to hear my mumbles and mutterings as I set up my new desk. As a systems engineer, Glen traveled a lot. Soon I realized that I missed him when he was gone. He was a fun office mate. Always making me laugh. Spending so much time together at work and after work, we’d become really good friends and shared everything. He’d tell me about all the girls he dated, I’d ask advice about my boyfriend.

Then one day I realized he’d just admitted to having broken it off with the last of his many admirers. I wondered why. Yep, I was the only one who did not have a clue as to what was happening.

Glen and I were friends for a year. I’d recently broken it off with my boyfriend. I was approaching my 25th birthday and lamenting my single status; my sisters had both married by 25 and I wasn’t even dating anyone. One night I tossed and turned, completely distraught over my singleness. Wondered what I was doing wrong. What was I…missing?  Oh. My. God! About 2:00 a.m. I realized the solution was staring me in the face. There was a perfectly good guy in my life already. What was I going to do about it? I tossed and turned the rest of the night figuring that out. The next day I went to work with the thought in my head that I wanted to date Glen, but I kept the knowledge to myself for a couple days wondering what it would be like standing next to him as his girlfriend.

A couple nights later we went to happy hour, like usual. Stayed for coffee, like usual, and I finally scrounged up the nerve to say something as we were saying goodbye. “Um, I was wondering,” I said, leaning against my car. “If there might be something more here than friendship?”

Glen let out a breath I think he’d been holding for a year. “Yes!”

This year we celebrate our 20th wedding anniversary. The best part? The friendship that started the relationship is the core that we’ve built on the entire time. I still think he’s cute. He still makes me laugh and we can still talk until all hours of the night. I’d say I’m lucky, but really I’m smart. I know a good thing when I see one. Well, eventually I figure it out.

Be sure to visit all week as my guests share their own CURRENT LOVE stories. I guarantee a fun, inspiring and heartwarming week ahead. If you missed any of the Industry Love stories, you can find them here.