While we were vacationing in Hawaii last week, we received heartbreaking news about our sweet neighbor. She lost her son to suicide. While we were vacationing and playing on the beach, a friend was unexpectedly losing her son. It broke my heart for her and for her son that he had hit the point of extreme darkness and felt like he had no way out.
I recently ran into an old friend at a restaurant. She was celebrating her birthday with her friends and I gave her a celebratory hug. She simply replied that she was just relieved that she was still in her 20’s. It got me thinking…how do I feel about being in my 30’s? How do I feel about aging? How do I feel that my friend basically dreads being my age? Legitimately my stress with aging is disappearing by the hour. Read More
It has been a while since I shared an embarrassing confessional about me. But, today is the day. 🙌🏼🙌🏼🙌🏼 You know when you are on Facebook and those stupid personality tests pop up? Well I couldn’t help myself the other day when a link popped up in my feed for a “My Personality Test” and I clicked on it. I was fairly certain it was going to be ridiculously wrong. Read More
I was out running errands yesterday and I was stuck at a red light at an intersection. As we sat there in the car, my mind was simply thinking about the next thing on the errand list, but Wes broke that thought and yelled, “Look mom! Ducks!” He yelled this as he pointed at a fenced in, chain linked yard filled with ducks, enjoying the summer afternoon like they owned the yard. I immediately was confused by the sight…I mean what the heck are ducks doing in a regular, slightly small, neighborhood yard? Wes was fascinated! He immediately asked, “Those ducks are their pets? Can we get one?” Read More
All of a sudden he was gone. I was so scared. I was scared that we were going to grow apart. Scared that we wouldn’t be interested in each other when he got home. And if I am honest, I was scared to death that he would come back from his mission weird. I couldn’t blame him if he did but I was horrified of that, nonetheless. Read More
Here is something you need to know about me…I am notoriously embarrassing myself. I am a natural clutz that says and does all the wrong and entirely inappropriate things. Steve is always so embarrassed by me. So, for your enjoyment, and for Steve to cringe while reading this at his office, I am doing a new series of my most embarrassing slash ridiculously not ok moments. Taking it back about 11 years for my first of the series of “unfortunate events”. 😉 Read More
It was the fall of 2001. We had graduated, gone on our senior trips and were both now living in Logan, Utah. A small town an hour and a half north of our hometowns. We both decided to live in the dorms. Steve was living with two of his buddies from high school and I was living with 5 random girls that I had never met before. We lived a short walk away from each other and needless to say, we were making that short walk multiple times a day! Read More
I remember as a child sitting next to my dad on the couch and watching the Miss America pageant. I was fascinated. The women were beautiful, dressed in sparkly gowns, they were incredibly talented and on top of all of that, they were smart. I am sure he could see the amazement in my eyes and my dad asked me if I wanted to be Miss America. I responded with a shrug and my dad answered the shrug by looking me in the eyes and telling me I could be Miss America if I wanted. He followed it up with, “You can be the president if the United States if you want. There is nothing you can’t do.” He believed it…I had no doubt he believed it, but what I didn’t say out loud was that I doubted both…I wasn’t smart enough, I wasn’t pretty enough and I definitely wasn’t talented enough. I was probably 6 years old and I didn’t feel enough.
It was the fall of my 5th grade year. I went to a private school in an old red brick building surrounded by large leafy oak trees. It was old and beautiful. Every day I had to wear the same typical uniform, red and navy plaid skirt, white button up shirt, blue cardigan, a little blue neck tie and knee high socks. It was classic.
My class was divided into groups of learning abilities. They didn’t tell us this, but it was very clear to me that I was in the upper learning group. I was very awkwardly smart. My strength was math and numbers. I can say that now because my mom brain has completely wiped out every ability my mind once had. In fact, I can’t believe that was me. If you were to ask me a basic math question now, my brain would hurt…but, I digress.
After we had our first kiss, our relationship quickly morphed into one of those relationships that I had always made fun of. I was crazy about Steve. He made me laugh, he was confident, athletic and he was the best kisser! I couldn’t keep the butterflies at bay. Along with our love for making out was our equal love for the show Survivor. It all started 18 years ago when we would get together to watch our favorite reality TV show. Because of our friendship, we found excitement in the mundane and seemingly small things. At this time Steve was trying to decide where he wanted to go to college. He was an amazingly talented football player that had played quarterback and was being recruited to play safety. He had offers from a few universities and was trying to make his decision. I had already made mine. I was going to Utah State. A school 2 hours north, in Logan, Utah. Although Steve had a scholarship offer from Utah State, I assumed he would go to the University of Utah and that we would be going our separate ways for college. I stayed out of his decisions for where he would go because this was his future and his possible future career. I didn’t want to sway him one way or another so I mostly listened to him as he expressed the pros and cons of each opportunity. The idea of going our separate ways gave me a pit in my stomach. I had known for a long time that my feelings for him were deeper than a typical high school relationship but I had zero desire to freak him out with my expressions of love, so I kept them to myself. I had never seen a high school relationship work out long term so I braced myself for our inevitable goodbye.
I remember one night in January of 2001, I drove my little, red, Ford Festiva up the winding streets to Steve’s house less than a mile from my own. It was a cold winter night and I rushed to his house. I only had an hour to spend with him because it was a school night so my parents liked me home by 9:30. I parked on the street and walked up to Steve’s front door. He opened the door before I even had a chance to knock. He was excited to see me and clearly had something to tell me. He welcomed me with a hug and as he wrapped me in his arms he said, “Guess what?! I am going to Utah State!”
This may seem like a small thing, but it was a major turning point. We were going to college together. Our love story didn’t have to come to an unwanted end. All of a sudden a future with him was a real possibility and not only was I ecstatic but Steve was as well. We were falling, HARD, and I was letting myself embrace it. I had never planned on falling for someone while I was so young, but I couldn’t help it and I felt propelled toward my future with him. We went to dances, spent countless dates together and shared so much laughter. It really was sweet and beautiful and innocent. A relationship built on a solid friendship.
Oddly enough, I knew I loved him. I had loved him since we were juniors, but I never had the guts to tell him. I was so scared of losing our friendship so I quietly kept it to myself. The months went by and our friendship and relationship grew deeper with each passing day. Graduation was quickly approaching and I wanted to tell him before we graduated because now I knew I had to take the risk…he needed to know that I took him seriously.
I decided to be really mature and write him a long love note finally putting into words that I love him, in his yearbook. Yep, his yearbook. Because in high school, the yearbook is the ultimate sign of lasting love. As they say in the high school flick of our senior year, Can’t Hardly Wait, “The yearbook is memories frozen in time, people!”
Steve and I exchanged yearbooks and I got to work on revealing my actual feelings. Putting it into words wasn’t hard. My feelings flowed. I had so many emotions that had been building for years. I knew exactly how I felt, the fear I had was letting him in on my feelings. Tonight, as I reminisced, I found his yearbook buried away in an old dusty box. Reading what I wrote is actually super sweet. It stirs up those feelings of newness. I genuinely cared for him:
Well, there is no one place to begin. You are so amazing! I have so much appreciation for you and it grows every moment we spend together. There is not a second that passes by in the day that you aren’t foremost in my thoughts. Thinking about you helps me realize how worth the wait through our friendship was. I knew from the first time we talked that you were someone worth fighting for. I knew we had something special and the potential for an incredible friendship from the beginning. Our friendship has far surpassed my expectations. The thought of you in my future makes me happy and I can’t wait to see where Utah State takes us. The best is ahead of us, I am sure! There are times you look at me and I honestly melt. I know that sounds cliche, but you make me feel special without saying a word…it’s what you say in your eyes. You make me happy and because of that, I love to be around you! Thank you so much for your friendship. You have made high school the most memorable time of my life thus far. I know I am a wuss when it comes to telling you my feelings, but I am sure you know how I feel. I couldn’t hide it if I tried! I care for you more than I can put into words; I love you, I really do! Thank you for the memories, I can’t wait to experience life ahead with you.
Love you always,
Cheese ball central, but real. Love comes to anyone, at any age. That is the beautiful thing about love, it intertwines with everything we experience in life. It is the root of happiness, sadness, passion, and anger. Love is everywhere. What is amazing is that our love has grown exponentially with every moment and every experience we have had together. I believe that it is because of this base, this beginning, that we are where we are at now. He knows me at my best and he knows me at my worst. He accepts me and actually helps me feel appreciated through the weaknesses that I have. Can’t wait to see what is ahead! Here is to a lifetime of anniversaries ahead! I love you babe!
On a side note, for those interested in seeing the full story, KSL news did a story on us last night. Best surprise ever. I am thankful every moment for the love and support I get from Steve! Here is the link!