Is This Seat Taken? A Love Story

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Editor’s Note: This is an excerpt from Nancy Ripp White’s book, “It Can Happen to You…50 serendipitous, unexpected, out of the blue, life changing love stories.

 Couple #19 Gloria and Jon

I commuted into Grand Central out of the Riverdale train station daily, after dropping my son off at nursery school.

When you take the same train every morning you befriend commuters and chitchat on the way in. I met a woman, Louise, and we would talk about our husbands and how unhappy we both were in our marriages.

There was a very handsome commuter who sat with us too, but we didn’t talk to him. She and I were sharing too many tales like two little girls chatting away.

Saying I was unhappy led me to many excursions that I am not proud to even remember—but the bottom line was I was feeling unloved and looking for love in all the wrong places.

On Administrative Professionals Day (formerly referred to as National Secretaries Day), I placed the beautiful flowers my boss had given me on the vacant seat next to me.

On this particular and life-changing day, I was commuting home from my office, when the handsome commuter from the morning commute stopped and asked me, “Is this seat taken?”

I practically threw the flowers on the floor to make room for him.

We both told each other we were happily married. After following weeks of talking and lying to each other, he finally shared that he was unhappily married and I boasted with joy, “So am I.”

I fell deeply in love with that handsome commuter, who today is my husband of thirty-seven years.

They said it would never last because of our circumstances. The odds were against us. But I decided to give love a second chance. Why?

Through a lot of self-discovery, self-care, and accepting my self-worth, I realized that I deserved it.

To make this relationship successful, we both had a great deal of soul searching to do. Through self-reflections and wonderful outside help, I worked very hard on myself.

I first had to find that love in me—before I could accept that someone else could love me.

From Is this seat taken? to a strong, committed, long-lasting love affair has been one of life’s greatest gifts!

An incurable romantic, Nancy Ripp White has been collecting stories of how couples met for years. She would sometimes share those stories with her female friends who were disillusioned with dating, especially online dating, and bemoaning that there are no good men left. Her stories gave them hope.

Navigating through her own personal challenges, she discovered a life-changing truth—the importance of self-worth, self-trust, self-confidence, and self-love, which lead to feeling empowered and becoming ready when love appears. Motivated to help other women, she became a certified life coach specializing in relationships. For over two decades she has successfully counseled hundreds of women on the life-changing power of self-worth and self-love.

It Can Happen to You is available on Amazon and booksellers everywhere.


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