Every day is special. Some are more special. Today I celebrate 8 years of marriage with my wife, Kelly. It's hard to believe that it's already been eight years. Time flies when you're having fun...and kids, and pets, and lots and LOTS of adventures (both great and not so great.) In this post I'm going to share how I met my wonderful wife.
I first met Kelly in the summer of 2002. I had just graduated high school. Go Vikings! I was a bike riding, pet portrait making, play station playing, marching band nerd who despite all those less than earth-shaking characteristics, really loved his family and God. I had been accepted to Wingate University and was entering as a Art Education major. My youth group took a week long trip to a mission camp called Passport which just so happened to take place at Wingate. While I was there, I decided to snoop around the art building one last time before I became a full time art student. That decision to go site-seeing proved to introduce a much larger chapter in my life because as I passed by the ceramics studio, I came across one lone student, deeply involved the makings of a work of art.
I hadn't intended on seeing anyone present in the art studio since it was summer after all but our eyes met and I stopped in the door way and said, "Hi." I can't remember our exact exchange but I introduced myself and felt that I was invading her space. But this pretty blonde girl was hard at work and I felt like I was being intrusive. If you haven't figured it out by now, yes, that was my future wife. We didn't have a giant moment of angels singing from heaven upon first sight of each other but I've learned over the years that God doesn't normally speak to us in a thundering voice, but whispers his intentions and desires into our hearts.
There But Not There
Kelly and I saw each other around on occasion my freshman year but remained just acquaintances for a good part of the school year until late spring of 2003. This was due to her being a junior in college and studying Environmental Biology and the fact that I began dating a another only to break up 2 months later.
I was distracted ok?
The Art Couch
I wish I had a picture of it though -- the art building couch. That couch was what my students call, "ratchet." Straight from the 70's, that couch had seen a lot go on in that building. It sat outside my photography professor's office. That's where I got to know my bride. We talked a lot. Shared stories. Talked over sketches we had made. It dawned on me suddenly one day that she had been the first student I had met at Wingate a year back in the ceramics studio. I learned she was minoring in art as well and that was why I saw her around the building. I learned we had a lot more in common than anyone else in that silly art department. We became friends and usually rode bikes together. We began talking over more important things in life like religion, relationships, and family. I had begun to realize that I had found more than a companion and I wanted to pursue more.
Rain = Romance
By the end of the school year, Kelly and I had an unspoken fondness for each other. I invited her to go to Carowinds Amusement Park with me, my brother, and a friend. We arrived to sunny warm weather but by the afternoon it clouded over and began getting misty. Most everyone went home but we stayed. All.. DAY. It still ranks as one of the top 10 best days in my life. As the day went on, the rain came down harder. Everyone went home. But we stayed. The rides stayed open because there hadn't been any thunder or lightening. We rode The Hurler 15 times in a row. The guy in charge didn't even slow the cars to let us off after a while. We were soaked to the bone as the rain pelted us on those rides. We ran through the park jumping in huge puddles of water and generally acted ridiculous. We couldn't have had a better time. On that trip I fell in love.
Not The End But A Great Beginning
Life is like a giant roller coaster. It has it's difficult times but it also has it's moments where you just have to let go of the handle bars, throw your hands up in the air, and scream like a sissy girl. (I'm really good at that by the way.) I am so happy I get to share my life with Kelly because no matter what happens in life, I know Kelly's got my back and I will ALWAYS have hers. No matter what. Happy Anniversary, sweetie. I love you.