She liked what she saw (on her t-shirt)

One of the first things Dr. Lindsey Madison Ward noticed about Dr. Michael Taylor Richardson was his System of a Down band t-shirt.

It was 2003, and the two were at a pool party before their freshman year of college at Harvard-Westlake School in Los Angeles. A fan of the metal band, Dr. Ward showed up and introduced herself. The two quickly became friends and in eighth grade they started dating.

“A pretty classic college crush,” Dr. Ward, 30, said of their first relationship.

Although they stopped dating at the start of their freshman year at Harvard-Westlake, they remained close friends. By the time they entered their second year, in 2006, Dr. Ward noticed that his feelings for Dr. Richardson had once again become more than platonic.

In October, she told him she loved him. A week later, he took her to a local carnival on a date, and from there they remained a couple throughout high school. The summer after graduation, in August 2009, the two decided to go their separate ways because they were going to college in different states: Dr. Ward had enrolled at Columbia and Dr. Richardson at Washington University in St. Louis.

“It was awful,” Dr Ward said of the breakup, “but I think during the time we were apart it was really necessary because it gave us time to exist on our own. .”

“For most of our teenage and teenage years, we were always together,” she added.

In December, when the two returned from college for winter break, they started hanging out, and Dr. Richardson knew his feelings for Dr. Ward had never really gone away. “I really wanted to get back together,” said Dr Richardson, 31.

While waiting in the In-N-Out Burger drive-thru queue, he asked Dr. Ward if she would consider becoming a couple again. She immediately accepted.

Since they were dating a distance college, each visited the other several times a year. When both graduated in May 2013, they moved back to Los Angeles. Dr. Ward then moved to Boston for a few months for an internship in art conservation; after the end, she and Dr. Richardson went on a four-month trip through Europe and Asia.

In the months leading up to the trip, each had applied to medical school. While traveling, the two learned that they had been accepted into programs. Dr. Ward then enrolled at the University of California, San Francisco and Dr. Richardson at Stanford.

Between their third and fourth years of medical school, the two decided to take a year off from their studies to do research. Dr. Ward was chosen as a Fulbright Scholar in 2018 and studied Neuroesthetics at Paris-Descartes University in Paris. Dr. Richardson, who joined her for the year, was doing research at the Institut Gustave Roussy.

They started talking about marriage while living in Paris. After the couple returned to the United States, Dr. Richardson proposed to Dr. Ward in September 2019 at a scenic vantage point overlooking San Francisco Bay.

“She’s always so enthusiastic and excited,” Dr. Richardson said of Dr. Ward. “She has incredible life values ​​and morals and she’s someone I just want to keep growing with.”

The following March, they returned to Los Angeles and each graduated from medical school a few months later. Dr. Ward is currently an internal medicine resident at the University of California, Los Angeles and a doctoral candidate at the University of Paris-Descartes. Dr. Richardson is a resident in obstetrics and gynecology at UCLA

They tied the knot at the Beverly Hills Courthouse in Beverly Hills, Calif., on April 1, about two years after they originally planned to get married before postponing due to the pandemic. Nancy Claiborne, a wedding ceremony volunteer with the Los Angeles County Clerk’s Office, officiated.

Although only one photographer was present at their civil ceremony, the couple plans to hold a second wedding celebration with around 100 vaccinated guests in May 2022 at Borgo Scopeto Wine & Country Relais, a hotel in Castelnuovo Berardenga, in Italy.

“He’s just very generous with his love,” the bride said of the groom. “I can’t imagine my life without him.”

Elizabeth J. Harless