Friday, February 2, 2018

All Lovey Dovey

Welp, it's February folks!

The month of LOVE!  

If you caught my Late Night Mom Chat last night, you know I'm actually not a huge fan of Valentine's Day.  I take heart eyed pics of my kids, give them a book and a pat on the back and call it a day.  Call me scrooge, but I don't need a day set aside to tell my people I love them- I try to do that everyday.  So, ya.  Also, going out to dinner with the hubs on the one day of the year that every other couple in America is going out just isn't my jam.  I don't like lines.  I don't like obligatory I love you's.  I like real life, in the moment sentiments.

With that being said, I saw a Valentine's tribute I loved the other day.  One blogger I follow posted her and her husband's love story, in honor of the month of love.

Ok, I feel ya... I can get behind that kind of celebration.

So, here it is folks- the moment that created a lifetime:

It was the year 2002 (YIKES)- Jessica Simpson was still relevant as a musician, cell phones were bulky and shatterproof, and teenagers still fell in love.

I was working at the California Midstate Fair- the biggest little fair anywhere- if you will.  I wasn't a carny, but I did wear overalls and sell kettle corn to the masses attending concerts in the grand stand.  Not a bad job for a 16 year old, as it paid cash at the end of 2 weeks.  My brother was also working the fair, but in the livestock division, so we were straight up fair classy livin' in an RV.  Good Times.

At the end of my shifts, I would walk from the Grand Stand, go hang out with friends, and then go back to the super fancy RV park at the back of the fair- passing right by a certain security guard post on the way.

We knew of each other, but Jeff and I had never actually met, so our casual smiles and hi's finally turned to conversations.  Before I knew it, I was cashing out early from work, skipping hang out sessions, grabbing his favorite treats and surprising him at his security post every night.  

We would talk until fair closing each night, about everything, and nothing.  For the first time in my life, I felt seen.  And heard.  

The fair nights slipped away, and suddenly, we were back to the realities of life.  And, at 16, I was officially dating at 19 year old boy ready to head out to Mexico on his 2  year mission in 2 months.  As any level-headed 16-year-old does, I fell hard and fast.  I loved the way he saw me, the way he made me feel like I was worth more than anything, that I was smarter than anyone, that my heart was the biggest.  I loved the way he took the time to get to know me.  And I loved him for his kind heart, patience, and smile.  He could smile in any situation- any.

Then, as life does, it went by, no matter how much we begged it to stand still.  He went off to Mexico, and I finished my Junior and Senior year, and headed off to college.  With so much time and distance between us, the spark faded and we spent the next 5 years apart.

I don't think you can ever really appreciate how much impact one person in 2 months can have in your life, until you see it unfold.  As I look back, I see how much I needed him to be there right then.  In the years that came, I battled such great depression, at times wanting to end my life.  I held onto the person he made me believe that I was.  It was enough to keep me going, through all the trials that came.

I'll never forget the moment I saw him again, after all that time.  I was sitting at the very back of church.  I had spent the last year becoming actively involved in church and was by no standard a front pew girl, yet.  From my very back view, I noticed him at the front.  Could it be?  I was sure he'd be happily married by now.  Off on some grand life adventure.  My heart skipped a beat, the whole world stood still.

After church, we talked for a few minutes, catching up.  We decided to hang out the next night.  Then the next night.  Then the next night.  5 months later we were married, and all was right with the world again.  He helped me pick up the pieces that had fallen apart in his absence and reminded me who I was, again.  

Happy Valentine's Day, to the love of my life!

All because two people fell in love on the warm summer nights of the Midstate Fair:

It's amazing what a whole lotta love can build!

Happy Love Month y'all!!!