LOVE STORY: He found the courage to say hi, and then found love |

LOVE STORY: He found the courage to say hi, and then found love

Cristian Espinoza and Raquel Rodriguez

It was a warm summer night, the culmination of four years in high school. I was always consumed in my studies and never had time to meet people. I wasn’t looking forward to grad night, but figured this couldn’t hurt. Never did I think that I would be introduced to the girl of my life.

She was sweet and innocent and very reluctant to approach me. Her cousin introduced us. I, being my introverted self, muttered, “Hola, como estas, me llamo Cristian.” Hello, how are you, my name is Cristian.

Fast forward to five years later and once again I was being my introverted self, dreading the idea of a family reunion. But I figured what the heck, it couldn’t hurt. Lo and behold, as I arrived at my uncle’s place, my eyes scanned the room and they made contact with a familiar sweet, innocent gaze. It was the girl I had briefly met on that warm summer night.

I decided to pursue this time in a very gentlemanly way. I saw her giggle and figured she must have thought I was a dork as I proceeded to be Don Juan.

After some time, which seemed eternal, we found out so much about each other. We had known the same families in town, we had lived four apartments away from each other as children, we had grown up around each other’s extended families, but never had we made eye contact the way we did Feb. 1, 2009. We had discovered so much that it felt like we were always in the same room, but we never crossed paths until that magical evening.

Fast forward once again and I find myself with the most beautiful, kind-hearted, free-spirited girl I would always dream about in my dreams. I have learned a lot from her and have found that through all my weaknesses, she has been there with compassion, understanding and unconditional love.

And, as I rewind the love story that has been our relationship, I find myself thinking what a lucky man I am to have you, Raquel Rodriguez, as a partner in this whirlwind we call life.

Cristian Espinoza

Carson City