I know I’ve been absent lately. Maybe you haven’t noticed, but I’ll confess to it anyhow. 🙂 Company, family vacations, more company, and just the normal busyness of summer. . .
But in all that busyness, important dates appear on the calendar just the same – dates like our 16th wedding anniversary for example. Even though we went on our second honeymoon several months ago, we still had a nice date night to celebrate.
Okay, you might as well know that this is going to be a mushy post. If you’re not in a mushy sort of mood, you might want to skip it. Don’t say I didn’t warn you though. 🙂
Sixteen years. Wow. All I can think of is, man we were young! The day we married I was only eighteen and Travis just twenty! What were our parents thinking!! LOL
How It All Began
Our story probably isn’t much different than anyone else’s. We met, fell in love, and got married. But like any story, there’s more to it than meets the eye. It’s a tiny speck in God’s time. For me it’s part of my life He used to make me the person I am today. Someone who still has a lot of growing to do, but oh, so changed by the grace of God!
To give you a little background, I was raised in a Christian family, went to public school, and was still a baby Christian when my senior year of high school began. As I look back on that time in life, I knew deep down I wanted two things: to be married to the same man forever and to have kids. I didn’t want to go to college. I didn’t want a career. I wanted to be a wife and mom.
Unfortunately, this made me a
little lot boy crazy. I didn’t really date boys – in fact I’d only ever had two ‘boyfriends’ and they each lasted about a day and half. I didn’t want to date casually although I’d never really heard of ‘courting’. But, I thought about boys. I daydreamed. I read romantic books and watched romantic movies.
My high school job was a grocery store clerk. It was here that I got to know Heidi who became a good friend in a short time. She was dating a guy named Nick who lived a few hours away from our hometown. As we got to know each other better, Heidi became determined to find someone for me. She decided to scout out Nick’s friends. Poor guys.
But let me tell you, Heidi did her homework.
She came back from a visit with Nick and said, “I found someone. And he’s perfect for you.”
She told me that when she met him she knew we were both too shy to make the first move so she told him a little bit about me and asked him if he’d be interested in meeting me. “Well, I guess. Sure.”
Then she handed me a list of stats.
Seriously. She had a list.
His name was Travis. He was a Christian, nineteen years old, six foot tall, wore a black cowboy hat, drove a blue Ford 4×4 and was in his second year of college, majoring in Agronomy (yeah, I had no idea what it was either). She should have been a detective. Did I tell you she had his mailing address and phone number too?
Well, what’s a girl to do when she hears about an opportunity like THAT!? So, I mustered up my courage and wrote him a letter, postmarked October, 1996. (Yes, we lived in the dark ages. Email wasn’t invented yet.) To my surprise, he answered back. Now when a Christian, Ford truck drivin’, cowboy hat wearin’ man writes a letter and uses a phrase like, “I have a special likin’ for. . .” what do you do but fan yourself madly and write another letter!
Talking to him was easy. I’ll never forget part of our first conversation:
Travis: “I want to be upfront and tell you something.”
Me: Gulp. “Okay.” Was he was married? Dating someone? A serial killer? I watched too many movies!
Travis: “The guys here (in his dorm) have a couple beers every so often and I join them. I wanted to let you know that I drink sometimes and wanted to ask if that made you uncomfortable.” (Travis would be sure to point out that he was still a baby Christian at this point too.)
Me: Pause. “Well. . .yeah, it does kinda make me uncomfortable.”
Travis: “Okay. I’ll stop.”
And that was that.
I’ll never forget how surprised I was at his answer. Here was a man I’d never met – yet he was so considerate of my feelings. Little did I know that this was a side to him I had barely brushed the surface of. It was a side I would come to cherish a thousand times over in our married life.
After a few more letters and conversations on the phone, we decided we were ready to meet in person. Nick was driving up to see Heidi so Travis decided to come along. Nick and Travis would bunk at Heidi’s folks’ place and we’d double date for the weekend.
Now, Travis and I had exchanged pictures in our letters, but nothing prepared me for seeing him step out of his truck for the first time! He’d already began tugging at my heart, but the look in his eyes when we stood face to face was enough to melt it into a puddle.
It wasn’t just his gorgeous blue eyes ;), it was their intensity. We’d both said we weren’t looking for a casual relationship – and the look he gave me that day said he meant every word. It changed my life.
In just a short time we both knew. He was the one I wanted to spend the rest of my life with. He’s the one I wanted to grow old with. We were engaged in April and married in August. Life has (thankfully) never been the same since!
Okay. I think I better wrap up this post. . .the love of my life is outside working in the shed. And I need to go kiss him. 😉