Let's back up to junior high, where technically this all started. Towards the beginning of my eighth grade year, my friend, K, said, "I think J likes you." I had never been more unaware of anything in my life, but I started paying attention and it was pretty obvious it was true. So I started liking him. And we 'liked' each other pretty much the entire school year because neither one of us could get the guts to ask the other one out. In the mean time, Will and I went to the same youth group at church and I thought he was pretty good lookin. But I wasn't interested in him. One of my old friends was, though. FINALLY, in April-ish, J asked me out while we were watching a scary movie at one of my friend's house. We 'went out' until September (about two weeks before my birthday, actually). That summer, we played tennis 3/4 times a week together. We talked on MSN messenger until 9 pm almost every night, when my stepdad mandated I get off the computer.
Once my freshman year in high school began, I realized it just wasn't going to work out. J was a good person, treated me well, and was a good boyfriend. But I was essentially missionary dating. I was trying to change him into something he wasn't, and I realized my relationship with Christ was beginning to suffer because of it. At this point, Will and I had become fairly good friends because we were both in Choral together. Since I was in high school, he decided I was cool enough to pay attention. I started having friendly conversations with him on MSN (so old school!), and one day when I asked him if he could give me some advice. I explained the situation with J, and he advised me to dump him. After all, my relationship with God should come first. After Will and I had been dating for a while, he confessed he told me that because he just wanted me to break up with J so I would be available. At that point, he was undecided between me and another one of his friends, but he didn't like that I wasn't even an option for dating, so he "broke me up with J." What a sly guy.
So soon after that conversation, I broke up with J. Over the phone. I told him it was because I just needed to focus on my relationship with God. Now, before you judge too quickly: I realize breaking up over the phone is like the worst thing you can do to someone. But we were barely 15 years old, it's not like we had dated for 6 years. And using God as an excuse is like the second worst thing you can do. I just really didn't know what else to say, and it was kind of true. Another funny thing about our breakup was that people were mad at me for doing it. Pretty much everyone we knew in our grade knew we both liked each other for our entire 8th grade year, and when we finally started going out, they all talked about how we would be the ones getting married and having babies. We were only 14, but we took it so seriously! Geesh. But I felt really bad about when I started dating Will a month later...
Not long after J and I broke up, Will started offering to take me home from youth (which we had Sunday and Wednesday evenings). We were both dish washers in the kitchen at church, so I secretly always asked to work with him. Maybe that was before J and I broke up. But again, at the time I really didn't think I was flirting with Will; I just thought of him as a really good friend. Anyway, one night when he took me home, he wanted to talk before I went in to the house. We sat in his old red Ford Ranger, and he eventually told me he like me. It was funny to watch- a typical teenage guy trying to express his feelings. It took a lot of work for him to finally just say it. He even slapped his steering wheel when he did. Since he was two years older than I am (which is a lot when you're in high school, especially since I was just 15), I told him I needed to talk to my mom.
So one day that week when my mom picked me up from tennis practice, I told her I needed to talk to her. So drove around while we talked for over an hour. I explained how this older guy in my youth group liked me, and I liked him, but I was worried about our age difference. Did she approve? All the stuff a 15 year old worries about (or maybe just me). I remember saying something like "I just got out of a relationship, and I don't want to start another one just to be in a relationship. I don't want to just go around dating guys for the heck of it. But I feel like if I get into a relationship with Will, it will be for the long-haul." Oh, how wise I was at such a young age :) Essentially, my mom said I needed to go for, which surprised me.
During that week, Will acted like normal. But one night when we were talking on MSN, he couldn't stand it any longer and finally asked, "could you just tell me if you even like me?" I told him yes, but at that point I hadn't talked to my mom so I said nothing else.
We began dating on October 29th, 2006. I was just a month past my 15th birthday and Will's 17th birthday was two days later. I think it was a Sunday, exactly a week after he confessed his "like" for me. He asked me out sitting in front of my house while we were still in his truck.
Will was the perfect boyfriend; he walked me to all my classes, he held my hand in the hallway. Since I was an underclassman and couldn't leave campus at lunch (and he had first lunch, while mine was second lunch), sometimes he would surprise me when he came back from lunch with cookies from the local bakery. He came to my tennis matches and would leave to buy me Schlotzky's for lunch. Our little 'thing' was going to Sonic for cheese sticks.
I think this is the first picture ever taken of us as a couple. It was that November (or maybe early December), when we went to the little town about 20 minutes away where my granddad was teaching high school theater to see his Christmas play.
This was taken a few weeks later, right before our Christmas choir concert. Snazzy.
These pictures were taken some time in 2007, I think:
|I think this was his 18th Birthday|
|This could have been in spring 2008, actually. It was taken at our Purity Banquet at church.|
|Spring 2007. Notice my massive sock tan-line from playing tennis.|
These two were taken Spring 2007, at my sister's high school graduation.
|Fourth of July in 2007, maybe? (Actually , I think that's right. My skin doesn't look so good so it must have been before Accutane.)|
Guess they were right :)
These next pictures are from the mission trip we went on to Costa Rica with our church in Summer 2007.
And these are from when we went camping with his family later that summer in Garner State Park. We are hopefully going back there next May, and I am SO EXCITED!
And a few more of me from that time:
|I really look like my cousin E in this picture.|
|This was in OKC at a family reunion. My hair was so cute!|