It has been a good year

Exactly one year ago, I was wrapping up an e.l.f. Makeup At Home party that Audrey and I hosted at our parents’ house.

I had spent the previous week in NYC, going on job interviews as I prepared to move there.

A few weeks prior, I had met a guy named Brian at a runners’ club and we had done a few long runs together on the weekends, just the two of us, as we prepared for our respective Fall marathons.

On our latest run, he had asked me if I wanted to do something during the week for a change, something that didn’t include running. So we had arranged to do something on Tuesday, September 1.

It wasn’t a date.

Not in my mind, at least. It was an evening with a running buddy, a way to end a trying day on a good note.

You see, I wasn’t particularly looking forward to September 1. It was to be the day of my divorce court hearing.

I had never been in a courtroom. I had never been divorced. All I knew is that I would take the stand and my lawyer and then the judge would ask me a series of questions. I would have to sit in front of my ex-husband, and about 100 people neither of us knew, people who had their day in court that very same day, and say that yes, we have decided that our differences are irreconcilable; no, I am not asking for spousal support; and yes, I am choosing to go back to my maiden name, among many other questions.

And that’s precisely why Brian suggested we plan our little non-running get-together on that day. So that there would be something nice for me to look forward to after an emotionally draining morning.

Most of the ladies had left my parents’ house after the makeup party when I received an email from Brian. He was getting in touch about the following evening:

Weather’s looking good, so I was thinking a little boat ride, show you the harbor and head over to the island, we can tie off in front of the house I’m helping to build. Great views of Bristol, has a deck with chairs, it’s neat looking at Bristol from the water. There a beach on the west side we can walk to. its like a mini Martha’s Vineyard. You were talking about real Irish food, you said you liked Aidan’s, so let’s try the new one, they updated it and it’s nice inside. so not sure what time you can make it, we can do 530 ish or before. Its going to be great weather so if you have the time, we can start earlier. Hope you’re having fun at the girls party tonight. Talk to you later, I think this will get your mind off things.


I read it and thought, “Oh, I get it… this is a date.”

In my mind, because I was literally in the middle of a divorce… because I was moving to NYC… because Brian was almost 5 years younger than me… it couldn’t be a date.

But I enjoyed spending time with him, and I knew we’d have a good time together, so the next evening, hours after my trip to divorce court, I drove to meet Brian where he was waiting for me, with his boat and his dog Tansy, on the dock at Bristol Harbor.

He was right; the weather was good. We walked to that beach on the west side of Prudence Island and watched the beautiful sunset, then took his boat back to Bristol for dinner at Aidan’s.

One of the things I liked so much about Brian at the time (and what I love about him now) is that he was so kind, understanding and patient with me. He knew I needed time, and he gave it to me. He knew I needed to move away, to be on my own in a new city, and he encouraged me to go.

Of course, the more I got to know him, the more I enjoyed his company… and I soon found that I didn’t like to be without him at all.

And that’s one of the main reasons why 6 months after I moved away, I came back home.

Exactly one year ago, I was a day away from forever saying goodbye to a piece of my past, not realizing that the same day would prove to be such a defining piece of my future.

September 1, 2009 - Brian took this photo of me and Tansy on the dock at Bristol Harbor

About Audrey

Audrey McClelland has been a digital influencer since 2005. She’s a mom of 5 and shares tips on her three favorite things: parenting, fashion and beauty. She’s also a Contemporary Romance Author.

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  1. 9.1.10
    Shannon said:

    I love this story Jane.

    I spent so many summers down Prudence Island, so I could totally envision everything you wrote.

    I’ve enjoyed watching your romance unfold all year that’s for sure. And from over here I beam for you whenever I see pictures of you and Brian looking so happy.

    Here’s to many many more happy years for you both!


  2. 9.1.10
    admin said:

    Tears of joy. xoxoxo! I love you both so very, very, very mcuh… Mom

  3. 9.1.10

    Thanks for sharing – you made me weepy! xo col

  4. 9.1.10
    Amy said:

    Beautiful post, Jane!

  5. 9.1.10

    Oh Jane…. what a year it has been for you. I am so incredibly proud of you and I cannot wait to see what the next year will bring for you and Brian. You both are such an awesome company. (((HUGS)))

  6. 9.1.10
    Kim said:

    A beautiful story Jane and when I read the part where you said Brian knew what you needed and encouraged you to go, I couldn’t help but think of the quote “if you love something set it free; if it comes back, it’s yours – if it doesn’t, it never was.”

  7. 9.1.10
    Lucy said:

    In the journey of life, though the road may seem hard to travel at times, the final destination is worth the effort. Wishing you and Brian many happy years ahead.

  8. 9.1.10
    Connie said:

    Jane, you are truly your mother’s daughter. Your writing, like hers, is filled with love and passion and emotion. You embrace all that life has to offer, relishing all the good and coping with the bad. You so deserve the happiness you have found. Brian is five years younger? Pish tosh. You two are soul mates.

    Love, Connie

    (P.S. One of my brothers is FOURTEEN years younger than his wife and they have been happy together for over thirty years).

  9. 9.1.10

    I am so happy for you Jane! I can’t wait to meet Brian one day, he sounds like an amazing guy, just perfect for an amazing gal like you.

  10. 9.1.10
    Amanda said:

    You brought tears of joy to my eyes. It’s such an honor to be your friend and I can’t wait to meet Brian some day, and thank him for the happiness he’s brought to and for you!

  11. 9.1.10
    Erika said:

    Your post really hit home for me, thank you for being such an inspiration. I’m so incredibly happy for you – you deserve nothing but the best. xoxo

  12. 9.2.10
    Chrissy said:

    Jane, I cannot believe I have been following your stories and experiences since your Mama Doggy Love days. This was all before the Pinks and Blues days…and now look where you are! So much has happened over the past few years and I am glad to have been able to follow your journeys. Big hugs! C

  13. 9.2.10


  14. 9.2.10

    Has it really only been a year? It seems like you have been together much longer from the way you write about Brian. You must be destined for each other! Congratulations on your year and I hope to get to meet him at BlogHer next year! 🙂

  15. 9.7.10
    Shannon said:

    Jane – I am sooooo happy for you! I remember that crazy summer before you met Brian. It takes some weeds before you get the flowers and it looks like you picked well. I can tell from your writing that he brings out the best in you. 🙂

  16. 9.20.10

    Great story. Inspiration for those of us who might need a tiny bit of it… xo

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