"A woman who fears the Lord will not run away from God to satisfy her longings and relieve her anxieties. She will wait for the Lord. She will hope in God. She will stay close to the heart of God and trust in His promises. The prospect of departing into the way of sin will be too fearful to pursue; and the benefits of abiding in the shadow of the Almighty too glorious to forsake."
John Piper

engaged

such a surreal time in life where that official countdown starts, something about your relationships matures and changes, and happy tears are waiting to fall at any moment.

To say that I wasn’t expecting it is a lie - although the moment was a complete surprise. You see, since the moment I met Josh, I somehow knew that someday in the future I would be making the switch to ‘fiance’ and then to ‘husband’. People always said that when you meet the person you’re supposed to be with you’ll just ‘know’… and boy are they right. I realize why it’s so hard to explain how you know - it just happens! Yet, that day, that hour, that place, that ring… MY ring… I had no clue it was about to happen.

I woke up from a text from my handsome man wondering if I wanted to go over to the coffee shop and hang out. Now, I LOVE coffee… but there is something about the small-town Quadra coffee shops that is the perfect experience. They are somewhere that feels like home. We talked about the future, laughed at life, and talked about how the summer was coming to a close and our time together was coming to an end. Those times I get to spend with Josh are always my favourite. Enjoying a delicious americano and listening to a whole album of Louis Armstrong and Ella Fitzgerald playing in the background… now that’s what romance is made of. 

We lingered for a couple of hours before deciding we should probably head back. Next on the agenda was a hike. We drove to the Chinese Mountains, and as soon as we arrived, the rain stopped. Perfect. Despite a chest infection, my lungs allowed me to make it to the top, and I’m so glad they did - the view was gorgeous. Quadra has got to be one of the most beautiful islands on the planet! We rested and enjoyed the gorgeous view for half an hour until we saw some luminous clouds dumping rain on Campbell River, and we decided to make a run for it before they came over to us. Down we went! And we made it. Jumped into the car 5 minutes before it started pouring. Although I was already quite wet after I foolishly told Josh I “needed some water” to which he kindly squirted water from our water bottle all down my back! No feeling sorry for me though - I got him back ;)

Now, I was quite tired. My chest infection was tiring me out, and I expended all of my energy on our hike. So I got home and collapsed in bed. Although not even 10 minutes later Josh peeks in and tells me that I can’t rest, because he made reservations at a beautiful resort on Quadra for dinner! How can I not all of sudden have a new reserve of energy and excitement?! Now, I don’t have many nice clothes packed away for camp, so I asked Josh to help me choose something he liked. Unbeknownst to me, he was helping me choose the outfit he would propose to me in. Perfect. After a delightful meal and a glass of wine, we decided to walk along the beach. Seriously, this is the most gorgeous beach ever. Even though it was just sprinkling with rain, the sights, sounds, and smell of the ocean is so peaceful. We wandered down and sat to enjoy the surroundings for a little while. This beach holds some of my absolute favourite memories with Josh… and I remember that feeling of utter contentment as I sat there that night with him. (thinking about that moment is tempting those happy tears to start falling!)

It started raining a little bit harder so we stood up to leave. We walked for about a minute until I made us stop. The clouds had opened up in front of us and the sun was peeking through just enough to shine its rays right down… one of the sights that reminds me most of God’s love, glory, and immense beauty as heaven’s light seems to directly shine down to earth. We stopped to admire God’s beauty, and be reminded of how thankful we were to have Him in our lives - in control, loving us, and planning all things for our good.

Now, more Joshua sneakiness. Because of the rain he looked over and said “oh shoot, the rain is smudging your makeup - here let me fix it” - as he rubbed off the ‘smudges’ he told me to close my eyes so he could get the rest off… yet when I opened my eyes, he was not wiping the makeup off his hands, he was down on one knee looking up at me with those gorgeous, loving eyes. I wish I could’ve paused that moment and continued to have my heart fill up with love and joy, but I don’t have to - each day my love for Josh grows, matures, deepens, and fills my heart all over again in a lasting, solid way.

He reminded me of his love for me… and asked me those important words “will you marry me?” and through my myriad of tears I laughed and said “OF COURSE I WILL!” Then he slipped this beautiful, hand-picked, mystery of a ring around my finger and I truly gasped. Of all the rings I had seen, this was IT. This was the ring. I wouldn’t have been able to pick it out myself, but he had somehow chosen it. The ring that was perfect for me. I absolutely LOVE being able to say that he picked it out without any input or knowledge on my part - and I am blessed to know that my handsome fiance put time and effort into choosing the perfect ring. And now I wear this ring - the symbol of my love and commitment to this man for the rest of my life. The man who loves me despite me. Who continuously models Christ in ways that still blow me away and bring me to my knees in thanksgiving and worship to our Heavenly Father. I am so thankful to be engaged to the most selfless, unconditionally loving, hardworking, genuine man I know. Someone who effortlessly puts others first, and in whom has a character that changes others hearts and shows them Christ. I am so proud of all that he is. :)

I know that being engaged, having a beautiful ring, and enjoying a continuous feeling of ‘being in love’ has become an ultimate goal and determinant of love in our society today which makes me so sad. Yes - it was beautiful, wonderful, and definitely one of my favourite moments of my entire life. But those moments when Josh looks at me and says “of course I forgive you” for something I’ve done to annoy him for the 100th time, or the way I have learned to laugh at my own mistakes and not take the world so seriously… and for the way we’ve chosen to love each other through the times when it seemed like there wasn’t any hope left - those are the beautiful, messy, wonderful times that I can’t wait to share with him for the rest of my life. I know marriage is beautiful and fun, and I know marriage can be tough and painful… but I wear this ring to symbolize my commitment to both. The laying down of my rights and my life to love and serve him. A symbol my covenant to him for the rest of my life. Out of pain, out of fighting, out of learning the hard, ugly parts of yourself… out of love, and joy, and laughter… through this word we call ‘love’, I know I am making steps towards being like my Father - and that is our ultimate goal. 

""To suffer passes; to have suffered never passes." Too often we think a ministry of helps as a one-way street in which I, the healthy person, reach out in compassion to assist the wounded. But people who have suffered are the very best equipped to help, and a person crosses the final barrier of helplessness when he or she learns to use the experience of suffering itself as a means of reaching out to others…. A wise sufferer will look not inward, but outward. There is no more effective healer than a wounded healer, and in the process the wounded healer’s own scars may fade away."
Philip Yancey

oh my love [part 5]

Driving home from the wedding, so many thoughts were going through my head… most of them consisting of “oh my goodness, you were set up with the most amazing guy in the entire world who actually fit all of your criteria and just seems absolutely perfect and handsome and you didn’t flirt with him or show him you were interested and he actually seemed somewhat interested maybe but now there is absolutely no chance and you’ll never be able to see him again… what have you gone and done?” Basically, my mind thinks a lot. And tells me when I’m being an idiot. Of course that always happens after the fact.

[Some context:] 
Growing up I had difficulty figuring out where my identity was. As every other high-schooler, I discovered that the hardship, awkwardness, and pain of the teenage years mostly resides in that phenomenon of “finding your place.” Because apparently that’s where you find ‘security.’ A good disguise, but totally false. Regardless, I looked for it. And I unfortunately ‘found’ it - in guys.

The first inklings of where my identity could lie began in grade 10 when the most attractive guy at our school started talking to me. After the first conversation at my locker, the most popular girl in my grade came over to me and legitimately asked “What did he want? Did he think you were someone else?” And I gotta say, I was just as confused and shocked as she was. Now, I had absolutely NO self-esteem up until that point. I attribute the blossoming of my self-esteem to that grade 12 boy - J - that just waltzed into my life so unexpectedly. I gained status on both sides - from every girl in my high school - but also in the eyes of other guys. Apparently there was something unique about me of which I was completely oblivious. Anyways, I was easily swept off my feet by this charming grade 12, and I fell head over heels. While our friendship lasted for 2 years, and our relationship for almost a year - J would shape my perception of guys and start me on a new path of identity. Since my self-esteem was created by his interest in me, it also died when he left me. Before J, I was young and innocent, but after him, I was hurt and wounded and vowed to never be hurt again. The next 4 years continued to shape my identity that I had found in guys in a twisted and very unhealthy way. I loved getting guys to eat off the palm of my hand, and then turn my back and watching them pine for me. I didn’t know what power I had over them, but I loved having it. And I more often than not, abused it. It was my way of licking my wounds whilst others had to pay the price for it. I soaked up the confidence they would give me, and the wonderful affirmations and adorations they would bestow upon me, but my heart remained hard. I rarely had girl friends, and would gravitate towards guys. I developed weird friendships/relationships with many at a time, and it wasn’t until the end of my first year at University that I finally realized how horrible I was. I played a lot with guys hearts - sometimes blatantly, but most of the times accidentally - and I truly wished I could go back and undo all the damage I had done. I vowed to never get married or be friends with another guy for two reasons: I was terrified I would get hurt, but I was also terrified I would hurt them. Now fast-forward. 

So now there was this Josh guy and four majorly new things that stuck out to me as being completely different that anything I had experienced before:

1. I did not flirt with him, at all.Now, unfortunately, being flirty - or as I preferred to describe it, ‘friendly’ or ‘bubbly’ - was just the way I normally interacted with guys in everyday life. I had become so accustomed to craving the attention and affirmation from guys that I knew I could get if I acted ‘friendly’ towards them, that I simply didn’t know how to interact in a different way. So, the fact that this was the first guy I had never flirted with both stunned and intrigued me.

2. I was desperately attracted to him and he was nice. Again, unfortunately, I was never attracted to guys that were chivalrous, respectful, or treated me right. I guess after only being exposed to the opposite, that becomes comfortable, and ‘nice guys’ were uncomfortable. I also subconsciously thought that ‘nice guys’ would bore me after a while… and I wanted someone adventurous, dangerous, and who would keep me on my toes. So, when I found myself amazingly attracted to his sweet heart, and genuine respectfulness, I was stunned to say the least.

3. I never pursued him, but enjoyed him pursuing me. Generally, I always really loved a challenge, and within relationships, that consisted of me wanting to pursue to the guy. I would begin pursuing, and as soon as the guy reciprocated and started pursuing me, I would totally be turned off and leave. My minset: The chase was over, I had won, new challenge please. (A horrible mindset I might add.) However, I did not pursue Josh, but allowed him to completely pursue me. And it didn’t turn me off somehow. It was a refreshing change.

4.After realizing that I truly liked him, and wanted to be with him, I never became caught-up or obsessed with that idea. Now this is probably the most embarrassing, but in the past, I always became consumed with guys. I would think about them all the time, analyze conversations over and over, be in constant communication with them, and really be emotionally unstable. With Josh however, that phase never came. We’d text a couple times a day, but when I’d receive a message, I never felt obligated to text back right away. Don’t get me wrong, I LOVED getting them and loved chatting, but that desperation was never there. I thought about him a lot, but it never caused me stress and was wonderful passing thought after passing thought. Somehow, deep him my heart, I just knew it was right and it was going to work out, and so I didn’t need to expend energy on freaking out.


 
So there I was, lying in bed after the most wonderful day, kicking myself because I had just completely ruined an amazing chance to get to know an amazing man. There was absolutely no way I would ever see him again - I mean, he lived almost 6 hours away from me and neither us would have a reason to be anywhere near each other ever again. I legitimately thought that was it. Regardless, I had to let him know that I was somewhat interested… so I got on facebook and sent a nonchalant message “I hope you were able to get some rest before heading off to camp again so that this week isn’t too brutal! t’was great to meet you :)” I honestly didn’t expect to get anything back, or that it would be a “You too” kind of message. But little did I know that despite my apparent ‘lack of interest’, this wonderful man was not going to be let down so easily, and had already fallen for this whimsical, terrified, foolish woman.  

WANDERLUST.

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I am lusting to travel. 
I know I just got back from a month-long trip to Africa and Europe and I also know how wonderful it is to have a warm shower, and sleep in passed 6am…

But still. There is something about different cultures, people, food, relationships… and awesome, breathtaking sights that I want to continue to explore and experience. 

I think what I loved most was having myself be pushed into situations and scenarios that tested my comfort zone and pushed me to feel chaos. Generally this is something I dislike, but the quicker I embraced it’s presence, the more I enjoyed those moments. It made me crave those moments. Bartering? Sure. Crocodile meat? Why not? Running around London in the pouring rain and having a blast even though we got lost? Sounds great.

Running on minimal energy with little time for rest of sleep, jam-packed days of running around, early mornings, racing against time, figuring out where to go and how to get there… the stress, the joy, the sleepiness. It was SO wonderful. I can’t even put it into words. I gained a new appreciation for responsibility, flexibility, and independence… and I LOVED it. 

Now I’ll just have to work hard, save, and look forward to the future to experience more of the wonderfully diverse cultures, people, and wonders of the world. 

Life Update.

I am simultaneously having my idealized notion of what marriage is going to be like shattered, and yet still becoming more excited to marry my best friend one day. While the timing of this might be pushed further into the future because of this process and period of difficulty, I do not fret. I am thankful that I am falling more in love with the man God has given me.  While he is strong, loving, handsome, sweet, and brings me such joy, recently I’ve been overwhelmed by the fact that he frustrates me, confuses me, angers me, and bugs me. But then I read in a book that people in your life like that actually are teaching you more about yourself than about them. While I disagree with some aspect of that (i.e. some people have a character that stinks!) I have been meditating on the fact that this experience has literally taught me that I am selfish, prideful, impatient, weak, and broken. Many people would look at my position and wonder why I keep myself here - they’d tell me it was time to get out, get away while I still can. ‘You don’t deserve this’ they’d say. But I am blessed. Blessed beyond belief. I see how Christ is moulding me, growing me, maturing me, and pushing me back into His arms. He’s reminding me of how much His sacrifice was for my sinful self, and that He wants to change me more into His image daily. I am thankful for my disillusionment from my worldly understanding of love, my rights, and relationships and marriage even more. And it doesn’t scare me, because I rejoice in the beauty that is the messiness of learning agape love.. and knowing that nothing will separate me from my place in my Father’s eyes.

"

One tear in the driving rain,
One voice in a sea of pain…
Could the maker of the stars
Hear the sound of my breakin’ heart?
One life, that’s all I am,
Right now I can barely stand.
If You’re everything You say You are,
Won’t You come close and hold my heart.

So many questions without answers, Your promises remain
I can’t sleep but I’ll take my chances to hear You call my name
To hear You call my name

Hold my heart, could you hold my heart?
Hold my heart.

"
Tenth Avenue North, Hold my Heart.

Time.

Why is time moving so fast? I remember when the days would creep by ever so slowly, and now it seems like I blink and another month has gone by. 

I always thought I’d look forward to the time when the days passed quickly… but then i realized - what am I wanting them to pass quickly for? There is nothing waiting in anticipation at a coming age, and there isn’t a golden time in my life when everything is going to be perfect… so what am I waiting for? I live too future focused, and now I just realized that I don’t even know what that means. Future what? 

The problems of today are bringing such confusion, heartache, and difficulty… but the futures problems might bring even more. I hate being melancholic every day, but my mind keeps being flooded with doubts. I just want to run… 

I guess I’m just tired of getting dressed up for no one.. 

oh my love [part 4]

The day of the wedding had arrived - and unbeknownst to me, the day I would fall in love with the most amazing man in the world. I was absolutely terrified. And excited. All I could think about was how much I wanted to see Sarah. Carly and I woke up early, grabbed a quick breakfast, and headed out the door at 7am to make the drive over to Langley. I had extreme butterflies the entire way over. We picked up Tessa and then headed over to the florist to retrieve all the gorgeous flowers. The moment the flowers were put into my hands, everything became real. I can’t even describe the emotions I felt, but it was such a mixture of terror, overwhelming joy, nervousness, and surreal peace. (How can those exist in one moment you ask? Who knows. But it did!). We laughed and joked in our nervous excitement all the way to Sarah’s house… and the day was started. 

That morning was something I will never forget. Being a part of that initial excitement and emotion before the ceremony, and watching the transformation of woman to bride, was almost divine. There was so much joy and laughter, and I remember never wanting that moment to end. It was SUCH an honor. 

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The most significant point of my journey through my struggle with marriage and earthly love was the moment that Sarah pulled me aside to read me the letter Chad had written to her on their wedding day. It was the first time I had really cried tears of joy. 


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In my own mind I had struggled with the idea of being bound to someone forever. The people I had seen in my own life had marriages that either were struggling, utterly failing, or completely failed. There were no joyful moments anymore, and the pain I consistently saw only terrified me more and more. My parents were one of the most obvious examples, and as I watched my mom struggle through life every single day, my heart became hard. I resented marriage. I honestly did. All I wanted to do was run into the arms of God - the only one who would never leave me or forsake me, and the one whose love would never change. I never wanted to give anyone the chance to hold my heart, because it becoming broken would be inevitable. But hearing those words that Chad had written forcibly broke those walls, and those tears and frustrations I had held in for so long, finally flowed. It was such a relief… because finally these two wonderful people had shown me that there could be freedom, love, and peace in an earthly relationship. It isn’t even profound, but for me, it was overwhelming. And I thought: deep down I do want someone who will love me like that. Maybe I could see myself getting married after all….

As we bustled through the morning, I also became more and more excited - and it wouldn’t be me with the nervousness - about seeing Josh that day. As we were laughing and talking at Sarah’s house while she was getting her hair done, Mary Fairley was actively chatting about who she thought each of us should be set up with at the wedding. At first, she thought Tessa and Josh would be a good idea, but quickly changed her mind and decided that Josh and I were meant for each other. Sarah agreed. Everyone agreed. I remember telling them all that I was not getting married, but thanks for their concern - and I was trying to shrug off her insistence… but I couldn’t ignore that my heart was fluttering the whole time. 

Tessa and I arrived at the church to make sure everything was in order, and welcome guests as they started to arrive. We walked in, set up programs and the guestbook, and I peeked into the sanctuary and saw Josh and Sam. “Oh boy he looks handsome in a suit.” I turned and promptly walked out onto the verandah to ‘hide’ from him, but it wasn’t more than one minute later then I found him standing outside beside me. Gosh darn those butterflies.
We exchanged a few words of which I barely remember, and then were whisked away into our duties for the day. I desperately wanted to be focused on Sarah, but Josh was always forefront on my mind. During the ceremony, I was constantly aware and so impressed with how much he actually cared. And those little snapshots I got of his personality that didn’t carry any words, was the strongest evidence of his strong character. He cares. He has a sensitive heart. He loves. Basically, he just kept climbing further and further away from my idea of “attainable.” 
I was so intimidated and so extremely shy, but he was so handsome. It was a dream. I was constantly aware of how close he stood to me, and his proximity to me at all times. I also constantly analyzed this fact.

He totally likes me.
Uhm, Mikaela, he doesn’t know you, he doesn’t ‘like’ you. It’s never going to happen, let it go.
But he’s RIGHT there! No one stands that close to someone unless they’re interested! 
Ugh, just stop. 

I stole so many glances when I thought he wasn’t looking - cause I had literally never seen anyone so handsome in my entire life - and every time, I could not have been ready for what my heart would do. All throughout the day, I was so happy. Just carefree and happy. Summer day, wedding bliss, the-most-attractive-man-in-the-world in my sights, and lots of laughs. I could totally do this. I could totally get married… I could totally see myself with him.


The reception was when I really got to spend some quality time with Josh. (Now, I’m laughing as I write this because we were both so incredibly shy that our “quality time” amounted to a few conversations getting to know each other better, and sitting beside each other at dinner). However, through sharing the parts of our lives we were passionate about, I realized how similar we were. He actually loved and cared about all the same things I did! 
I always told God that I’d know who I was supposed to be with because they would be passionate about ‘a whole list of things plus overseas missions’, and time after time, the words he would say and information he would give, met everything I had told God was impossible to find in a man. 

Aside from his words, his actions spoke that much louder. He was the most respectful man I had ever met. He was chivalrous - always making sure I had enough juice, water, or coffee - and always serving me first. And he was genuine. (I have spent enough time with guys to know if they’re being genuine or just trying to ‘pick me up’). I honestly couldn’t believe it. I had never been treated like this before by anyone. I remember sitting beside him - inching as close as I dared without touching him - watching the wedding slideshow and thinking in my mind "I know I’m going to marry this man one day." I know that sounds crazy, but even at the time, it didn’t seem strange. There was something about him, about us, that was right, and it was obvious. One day we’re going to be sitting here watching slides of us. I almost reached out and put my hand on his. I almost wrapped my arm through his. But instead I just sat there smiling. Just with a big, stupid grin on my face, and soaked in as much of that feeling as I could.



Sometimes the truth and a lie are indistinguishable. I’m still understanding the damage, and it’s taking painful step, by painful step, to try to force the two to be distinguishable. I covered it, ran from it, denied it, accepted it, buried it. But what I really lost was my ability to distinguish between the truth and a lie. How could love and rape possibly exist in the same minute? Because to me it did. How could abuse and love exist in the same moment? It somehow did for me. Because there is no way I would’ve believe that blatant of a lie…… right?

oh my love [part 3]

I finished my second year of post-secondary education with a full summer ahead of me. I had decided to add a minor to my degree after I felt a strong pull towards missions work in the future… and decided that I’d finish that extra year within my 4 years so I wouldn’t have to stay and extra year and not graduate. Thus, my summer awaited me - 4 more courses to delve into. However, one of the only exciting things I had to look forward to that summer was Sarah’s wedding (!!). I helped her with the planning, the DIY touches… went to her bachelorette party, and as time flew by, it was no time before the day before the wedding arrived. 

I woke up the morning of July 13th with nervous butterflies, excitement, and of course, anxiousness. I put aside those feelings in order to quickly get ready, grab the shoes and dress to get the last minute approval of what I was going to wear, and hopped in the car. I secretly wished that Tessa would arrive at the exact same time I did so I wouldn’t have to walk into the church myself, but of course, it didn’t happen. I pulled into the parking lot and breathed deeply. I don’t know why I’m so incredibly nervous about stupid things, but as I gained the amount of courage needed to simply walk into the reception hall, I simply shoved those nervous feelings down and walked inside. I didn’t recognize anyone as I walked up to the doors, but as soon as I got into the gym and saw the chaos and bustle, I saw Sarah standing there trying to help control the madness. 


My first interaction with Sarah is one that will forever be etched into my mind. She came up to me gave me a hug and then whispered in my ear “He’s for you!” as she pointed to the most attractive guy I had ever seen in my entire life. Now, he laughs and tells me I’m lying whenever I tell him this, but I seriously had never seen anyone as attractive as him in my life. Like, actually. The first thing I noticed was his blond curly hair and gorgeous smile. I melted. (It also didn’t help that he had gorgeous muscles and was extremely tanned…). I almost keeled over and died just taking that in. It was a surreal moment, but I swallowed the lump in my throat, rolled my eyes at her, and made my body language show complete disinterest and dismissal of her comment by asking her what I could do to help set-up. It wasn’t hard to distract her with an offer to help as millions of other questions then poured into the conversation as other willing people wanted her direction or opinion.

As my job was assigned, I remember making every effort to avoid eye contact with this ‘hotguy’ - as he was affectionately named in my head - that she had set me up with, and I busied myself setting up the many tables. I prolonged meeting him for as long as I could until the set-up was complete and everyone was congregating to chat and be reminded of when and where they were supposed to be next before heading out. It was then that Sarah came over and officially introduced us… “Josh, this is Mikaela.” They way that sentence came out of her mouth said all I needed to know - that she had told him the same thing she’d told me. Awkward. Now I was entered into this situation that I had no desire to be in, and would be forced to feel extremely awkward in my interactions with him for the next 48 hours. I don’t think I even shook his hand because he was on the other side of the table, and Tessa and I left shortly after. Tessa and I had a short conversation about who Sarah had set us up with which her answer went something like “yeah, I don’t know what I think, but it could be fun!” to which my response to that question was “no… she knows i’m not getting married, this is going to be awkward.” Still, despite my constant denial the majority of the thoughts going through my head for the rest of the day were “omg why is he so attractive and why did she have to go and do this when he’s way out of my league and now it’ll be awkward and now I have to avoid him but I can’t avoid him because we’re with them all the time omg I’m terrible in awkward situations what am I going to do, ugh…”.

At the rehearsal Tessa and I walked down the aisle first, and went to our assigned seats off to the side. All the guys - my sights 100% on ‘hotguy’ - were sitting in the spots where the parents were supposed to sit, so as the realization that they needed to move came upon them they all scattered. However, all of them went to the opposite side of the church where Tessa and I sat except for Josh. He came and sat RIGHT behind me. There was the hottest guy in the universe sitting RIGHT behind me. Pass. Out. My heart quickened and I became stiff. Not knowing what to do, I was relieved as the program continued. When it was time for Sarah to come through the doors for that first time with the music and her dad, tears entered my eyes I turned my head back to watch her enter and sneak a look and Josh too. I saw tears in his eyes too. “Wow, he cares so much for her and what’s happening… that is so amazing.” I always thought hot guys didn’t care about things like that, and were all jerks somehow. But I laughed and smiled and wiped the tears away… somehow falling for this guy I didn’t even know, and was stubbornly refusing to try to. But all of those seemingly small moments started to wear against my heart and open it up just a little. The day continued with little communication. He was shy, I was shy. I tried to brush him out of my mind and just concentrate on interacting with my friends… but it was hard. At the rehearsal dinner later that night I was secretly discouraged that he wasn’t sitting anywhere near a place I could enter the circle, but as soon as a seat opened up beside me, he came and sat beside me. Beside me. There. In the chair. Me. Beside me. (Stupid girls and overanalyzing things, amiright?) As soon as he sat down someone came over and started chatting to him, so I continued my conversation with my friends. But as I was laughing and joking with my friends, I heard him laugh. He was listening to me be ridiculous! He laughed at me! We exchanged a few words and smiles as I embarrassingly told him I was just kidding about what I had been making fun of, but I was way to shy to do anything more or invite him into the conversation, but regardless, he still sat there. Darn Sarah had to go and set us up and make it awkward and hard for me. Oh I wished I could just stop feeling awkward and avoiding him and get to know him…