It happened nearly twenty years ago. I’m not sure about the date, but we were still in high school. It was winter. I remember there was a chill in the air. She called and asked if she could stop by with a friend. They were at Youth Group and the church was near my house. It would’ve been better if she were alone, but she was getting a ride from her friend and I had to take what I could get.
Trying to impress her, I was lifting weights in my bedroom when she arrived. Girls like guys who work out, I told myself. I knew she was athletic; she played basketball for her school. Pretty good little point guard with a decent set shot, though she had a bad habit of picking up her dribble to soon in her drive. My mom knocked and opened the door and said I had visitors. “Two girls,” she said. “Melissa and some other girl I don’t know.”
I took one last look in the mirror. Flexed a couple of poses, decided which hat to wear, and answered the door in my tank top and shorts. My long hair was pulled back into a ponytail beneath my baseball cap, which was turned backwards. I wasn’t sweaty. I felt like I had a good pump, though. She couldn’t resist this, I thought.
“What were you doing?” Melissa asked when I opened the door. She seemed puzzled as to why I was wearing summer clothes in the middle of winter.
“Oh, I was just working out.” I tried to be nonchalant, playing it cool as I stepped out on the porch and closed the door behind me. “So, what’s up?”
She paused, furrowed her brow, and asked “You work out???”
That’s when forever began…
On this day, October 14, 1995, three years following the story above, youthful optimism and stubborn resolve prevented us from seeing what we were getting ourselves into. Despite all of the advice we received (both wanted and unwanted), we chose to travel this life as one, husband and wife. Though some of the journey has been rough, and our path fraught with detours, I couldn’t have picked a better travel partner. I’m excited to see what the next seventeen years has in store for us.