marriage

Our Story, Part 3: The Struggle

So, at this point Todd and I had been on one not-really-a-date, and we’d spent hours talking and getting to know an incredible amount of information about one another (okay, mostly an incredible amount of information about him) but either way, something strange was beginning… a struggle that would last many long weeks (maybe months, I can’t quite recall)

After that first non-date, we simply remained friends and would talk at church and quite a bit in the new believer’s Sunday school class. The next several months were very blurry to me. What I mean by that is that my mind was such a hurricane of new and strange feelings, thoughts, knowledge, scriptures, and emotions, that I feel like my feet never touched the ground. I was learning so much about the bible and from the bible in such a short period of time (which was a good thing) that I was so eager to apply it all to my new little young life in Christ (also a good thing) but I wasn’t sure how to fit that in with everything else I already knew (the hard part!) And with this new person in my life who was a friend but not a “boyfriend” and who I clearly wanted to spend all my time with, but not “date” I wasn’t sure what to do or what to call this relationship. We had spent a ton of time talking on the phone and hanging out getting ice cream after church or whatever… but I wasn’t sure what was happening or where this was all going. Then it dawned on me that since we hadn’t really talked about it, maybe Todd was thinking that this whole strange relationship we had going on was a, you know, relationship…. and that freaked me out. I’d just ended several years of dating way too many men for all the wrong reasons, and I was just starting to find out who I was according to the Creator of the universe. I didn’t want to mess up yet another guy with good intentions and lead him into thinking that we were an item or that we were going to be. I prayed about it but wasn’t sure what to say to God, because I didn’t know who Todd was to me. I didn’t yet know that I could pray that God would just show me what role Todd was supposed to pray in my life. It seems so silly now, but in all my ignorance, He really did show me very clearly, even then. I just chose to ignore it.

So I called Todd and asked him to meet me before the evening service that Sunday so we could talk about our “relationship.” He agreed and when we meet, I quickly realized that he had been struggling with the same thoughts about where this whole thing was going and if it was appropriate for two people of the opposite sex to be spending so much time together. I mean, after all, people would talk, wouldn’t they? So we both agreed that neither of us was looking for any type of boyfriend/girlfriend situation and that in order to avoid all confusion (on our parts and everyone else’s, I guess) we would remain friends at church but we would no longer see each other outside of church or spend all our time talking on the phone like we had been. There, it was final.

ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha…….

An agonizingly long week or so after that very stern decision not to see each other outside of church, I found my clammy hands picking up the phone, half-dialing, then slamming it back down again several times. Finally I dialed the whole number and waited for him to pick up. I wish I could remember the sound of his voice on the other end. I wish I could remember if it was as eager as my own…but I can’t. All I remember was a very short conversation which ended in me saying “do you wanna hang out?” and him saying “yes.” Then I was in my car and on my way to him. Again, very few exact memories come back to me, but I do remember walking around in the park, getting mud on my jeans, laughing a LOT and basically having the best day of my entire life, all with this man. I knew then that all bets were off…I was hooked.

After that day we spent every waking moment together that we could. Our cell phone bills both exceeded $400 one month. We put hundreds of miles on our cars visiting each other since we lived 30 minutes apart.  He helped show me through scripture who I was and what God had in mind for me when I was created. I helped him understand years of emotional junk that had built up in his life and was now being sifted through. We both started to help each other learn to love another human being in the way that God loves us. It was (and still is) difficult and messy, but nothing’s ever been more real.

Next time: The Un-Wedding.

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