Welcome!  I am taking a break from all of my “normal” blogging to spend a whole SIX DAYS talking about the best day of my life…my wedding day!  Here is the schedule:
Day 1: How We Met
Day 2: The Proposal 
Day 3: Engagement Photos
Day 4: Wedding Planning
Day 5: The BIG DAY
Day 6: Our Honeymooon
I hope that you stick around and that you enjoy learning a bit more about me in this mini-series!
Day 1 – How We Met
(This was originally written for our wedding website.  I edited it a bit for use here)

Our Story – “He loves me, he loves me not…”
It was the summer of 2006, and I distinctly remember walking into the main meeting area at our Youth Group Summer Retreat.  There I saw a curly head bent over a guitar case.  “Hmmm.  He plays guitar and he’s cute!” I thought….

         One year later, I was still very interested, but very much in denial.  Besides, what was the point in being interested in someone who would never like you…but we kept on being friends.
Daily emails, parking next to each other at school, study time in the music rooms, and early morning bible studies (that kept shrinking until it was just us two) filled the next several months.  By the end of the first month of running start at the local Community College, I couldn’t keep myself in denial…

…I had a VERY big crush on this boy named Travis Sinks.
Since I couldn’t deny it, I decided to fight it.  Many days I left school almost in tears.  “Lord, please take away my feelings for him!  I don’t think You want me in a relationship right now.  I don’t want to be in a relationship.  Help me to just focus on You and simply be friends with Travis,” I cried out.  Months passed, and my feelings only grew stronger.  Consequently, my prayers grew more desperate.

After several months of desperate struggle, I was quiet for long enough to hear what God had to say.

He told me that He was not going to take away my feelings for Travis.

I had no idea how long they would last, but I did know that I would have feelings for him at least through high school…possibly longer.

Now I had to face the feelings, but still hide them from the people around me.  Through the difficult weeks and months that followed, God spoke again.

This time He reminded me that although earthly love may be difficult, heartbreaking, and unpredictable, His love is steady, unchanging, and everlasting…

Monday April 7th was a morning unlike most mornings.  I woke up in the wee hours with the stomach flu.  I called Travis at 6 am to say that I wouldn’t be at school.  He was brief and awkward on the phone…I was confused and hurt.  Later that day I got an email saying, “I want to talk to you tomorrow…”

I forced myself into complete denial.

Tuesday morning I was up surprisingly early for someone recovering from the flu.  We walked into school together; he didn’t mention the email.  The air was tense…. “Would he ever mention it?” I wondered.  I got up from our group of friends to leave for weight training.  He stood up too and followed me!

“Could we get together somewhere alone and talk?” He asked.

I told him my parents probably wouldn’t approve.  He was slightly agitated; I was impatient.

Three hours later, I walked out of biology class to see that handsome, curly-headed young man waiting…I was surprised and nervous.  He was so quiet…I didn’t know what to talk about.  I’m sure I brought up the weather more than once.
Finally, after a long pause, he started, “You probably know that I’ve liked you for a long time…”

I was so surprised!  I honestly can’t remember what he said next.  I just remember saying, “You probably know that I’ve liked you for a really long time too.”   He didn’t…I couldn’t believe it!  I was so happy, yet I still had to break the news, “I don’t think that my parents want me in a relationship right now, and I don’t think that it’s God’s plan either.”

My heart nearly broke when I saw the look on his face and heard the pain in his words, “I’ve heard that before…”

At that moment I would have done anything to make it better.  I reassured him that he could always talk to my dad.  He relaxed and left me with, “Well, it’s something to be praying about.”  I was a million feet off the ground as I waved goodbye…he liked me…ME!

Thus began long walks, looong phone calls, and getting to know each other’s families. Those days were beautiful.  Learning to understand another person on a whole new level is thrilling. The more I got to know this young man, the more I learned about my walk with God, my relationships with friends and family, and my own pride.

Our Story – “I like you…I love you.”
         Walking into the cafeteria of SPSCC, I listened to a voicemail from Travis saying, “I’m going to call your dad…I just wanted to make sure you were okay with it before I did.”  It had been 24 hours since I’d learned that he returned my affection and I was still miles off the ground.  Of course it was okay.  And so began 2 years, 4 months, and 9 days of the most wonderful dating relationship imaginable.  Of course, we didn’t call it dating right away…my paranoid self simply had to make each tiny step into a mountain.  His patience and love took us through each mole hill-turned-mountain that we faced.  

Like February 14th, 2009, our first Valentine ’s Day…

I just so happened to come down with the flu (again) the day before.  So he drove out to see me in the morning and deliver a beautiful red rose as I lay pale and feverish on the couch.  He completely surprised me by coming in.  I was so happy; he was so worried about me.  As he left the room to head to worship practice at the church, I could almost feel his sadness and worry.  A moment after he left the room, he reappeared.  “Can I give you a hug before I leave?” he asked.  I couldn’t say no…
         “I don’t want to get you sick…” I weakly tried to refuse. He gently helped me up and wrapped his arms briefly around me.  Then he left.

I think that first hug did more good towards getting me well than any of the medications…

Six months later he left for college.  The day before he left, I finally became brave enough to say those 3 little words…

“I love you.”

Once again, it took me a long time to get to that point.  Did I really love him?  What would happen when he left for college?  Would he forget me?  Would some other girl take him away from me?  I was so afraid…

We talked every day and I had to know everything about everyone he met and talked to.  He was patient, open, reassuring. Slowly, I began to learn the meaning of trust.  I loved him and I chose to trust him.
“I can’t wait to be with you,” we said.  I began to be sure…

{to be continued…tomorrow}
Be blessed.
Wedding Week - Day 2: The Proposal
All-In-One Shredded Chicken

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