Chapter OneThe dating years

.

Woah! Those glasses!!! Ha, ha. Chris and I met when we were 19. I was a student at Idaho State University and Chris lived near Portland, Oregon. We spent the next year writing lots of letters and making the 12-hour drive waaay more often than any two rational people should. After graduating, I landed a graphic design job right across the street from where Chris worked! I moved to Oregon and we were finally able to spend time together on a regular basis. Chris proposed that winter and, after much deliberation (I’ve never been a quick decision maker), I said “yes.” We set the ceremony to happen the following fall, but as the date grew closer and plans were not coming together, Chris could see I just wasn’t ready to be married yet. With wisdom beyond his years, he reluctantly suggested we call off the wedding, which we did, just a few weeks before the scheduled ceremony date.

Crazy as it sounds, our relationship actually improved over the following few months. In a situation that would cause most people to move on, we grew closer and more prepared for the challenges that were soon to come. Chris popped the question again that winter and, without hesitation, I gave him an immediate “YES!” We set the wedding date for that coming summer and, this time around, I was excited to plan our wedding.

Just a few weeks after the proposal, my family was in an auto accident that sent the seven of us to the hospital. Thankfully we all made it through, but not before Chris spent two weeks at my side in ICU. His selflessness, devotion, and love were never more evident. Through the followig months of additional surgery, recovery, and wedding planning there was no doubt how incredibly blessed I was (still am) to have this man by my side for better or worse. I am one lucky girl!