I was born overseas in a refugee camp but raised in Cincinnati. Spent most of my life there.
Later, I became a biomedical engineering major at the University of Cincinnati. As a part of my program requirement, I had to complete a few semesters of co-op.
I interviewed and accepted a co-op position in Pittsburgh at a large medical device company.
Taking only my car, a laundry basket, and some textbooks, I moved to my new city that I would call home for six months.
Ready to connect with other people, I was on Facebook trying to find new friends.
This wasn’t a thing back then. Let me throw you back into the right setting of what that was like:
It was the mid-2000s. Facebook was just created. The news feed didn’t exist yet. You could only register with your college email. The world wasn’t as connected as it is today.
(Does anybody remember that, too?)
It was a time if somebody you don’t recognize messaged you, you would write back, “Do I know you?”
So you can imagine how weird I felt to be clicking though random people’s profiles!
Meeting my future husband
As I was clicking, I saw an electrical engineering major at Carnegie Mellon University with a Vietnamese name who lived right down the street within walking distance.
I did what I wouldn’t usually do. I messaged a stranger. He actually replied and we chatted for a bit.
We did not wait even 24 hours to meet face to face. The next day, in what became the most important meeting of our lives, we met for coffee at the Starbucks in Squirrel Hill.
I instantly fell in love with how kind and gentle he was. He was a little shy, quiet, but very genuine.
The beginning of our relationship
Even though we just met, I felt like I knew him my whole life. We connected because of how much we had in common in terms of our values and what we wanted in life. Throughout the summer, we became the bestest of friends.
Our convos went like this:
“I played Final Fantasy VII, too!”
“My parents left Vietnam on a boat, too!”
“Oh, I go to the same church!”
“My mom also beat me with chopsticks!”
As we were hanging out one day I said to him:
Me: I like you.
Now-Husband: I like you, too.
With the most courageous act of mankind, he reached out and held my hand. I leaped for joy inside!
That was how simple it was. I consider that the day we became girlfriend and boyfriend.
Going back home
Summer and my co-op were coming to an end. I had to go back home because fall classes were waiting for me. I had no idea what would happen to our relationship once I would go back.
I was a little worried about not seeing him anymore.
It wasn’t like I was going to ever happen to be in Pittsburgh again. Or that he would just happen to be in Cincinnati.
Now-husband surprised me because in what was the most important move of our lives, he said, “I’m going to apply for jobs in Cincinnati.”
And got one.
He said he was chasing his dreams. And we’ve been inseparable since.
Shortly afterwards, he pursued a second career of medicine and we started the medical journey, from which the stories inspired me to start DocWife.