One day, I woke up at 6:00 ready to spend the day the way I enjoy it most, with my girls at junior camp. After nap-time we were schedule to play volleyball. I set up my little team and had them practicing for the last time before our game. As the game began I became very involved. I am not a volleyball player, but I really loved the opportunity to help these girls see what they were capable of doing. As I was cheering my girls on, I noticed a guy my age walk and stand behind the stands. Just his presence made me nervous, but I tried to just keep focus. I knew I was not playing his church, I already met the ladies from his group last year. ‘ What is he doing here?!’ I could not help but wonder.
Toward the end of the game I was so distracted I could not keep focused. I had junior counselors who played volleyball, so I delegated. And then I walked to the bleachers…to talk to my sister of course :). As the game finished it began to rain. *note: we were in South Georgia where rain is expected all.the.time*
“Looks like you got wet,” FINALLY, he speaks! Maybe he IS here to see me.
I wondered all week if he was ever going to speak to me.
“Really?” I pretended to be surprised. He then proceeded to introduce himself, and we began talking. A lot! In the rain, no less. It was an incredibly natural conversation, but it covered a lot of ground. We actually had quite a bit in common, and we were so intent on the conversation that we stood in a downpour for 40 minutes. The time came to get ready for dinner time and we both had responsibilities that tore us apart.
As I walked back to my cabin I was in a daze, wondering if I really did just meet someone. I had guy friends before, but this was different. Very, very different. My girls, (ages 8-12) couldn’t help but ask me if he was my boyfriend, if we were getting married, etc. All I could do was answer no with a very awkward I’m-trying-not-to-grin face. They then proceeded to ask if they could go play in the puddles. It was not lightening outside, so “Yes,” was the only answer my foggy brain could come up with.
I ate dinner with my girls, giving them a little less attention than usual, and tried ever so hard to not look around for my new friend. As I was finishing my meal, he came and sat down in front of me. I HATE eating in front of people, so I was officially finished eating.
Chapel after dinner had a few awkward glances back and forth, but since we had finally spoken I felt like I was finally allowed to notice him. After chapel the kids and counselors had free time and this young man found himself hanging out with me, my camp kids, youth pastor, and jr counselors. We had a blast, playing with children, and getting to know each other in a group setting. When bedtime approached he had to dismiss himself to prepare for the devotional.
That’s when it got awkward. Another counselor, Alyssa, could not help but ask me crazy questions and encourage me to give him my ‘digits’. NO WAY was I going to do anything forward. It was all going to be his initiation or nothing at all.
“Go on, just write your digits on your brother’s hand and send him into the boy’s dorm,”
I took my brother’s hand and wrote, “My ditgits,” Yes. I spelled it wrong, I really, really could not concentrate, and I thought that my sarcastic move would end the argument. Instead, Alyssa decided to write my number on my brother’s hand and sign her name. Her name just happens to be identical to mine. *sigh* I lost the argument, and the boy ran to the boys room to give my number to my new friend.
We had a blast the rest of camp and hated to say goodbye. Jeff, very sweetly, asked if he could have my number. It was a sweet gesture considering he already had it, and would not use it without permission.
He called the next day and admitted that it took willpower not to call me the first night. He called me every day after we got home for two weeks straight, and then arranged to visit me for a weekend. It was an awesome weekend, and the closeness we enjoyed grew faster than I imagined possible. He lived 4 hours away so he left and went home and packed his bags for a 2 week trip to the Philippines. The day before his trip when he called he asked me if our relationship could be exclusive.
There is so much more to the story that happened after, but suffice it to say, it did not take more than a month before I realized I was completely in love with him and we were engaged after 6 months of dating. We married 10 months after engagement and finished college together.