After we started talking to each other in the store, we didn't stop. We were always talking about something. I even learned that his favorite cookies were Amish sugar cookies, and I brought some to him a couple times. Throughout that year, I became aware that he was dating a nice girl, so I made sure not to infringe upon that part of his life. We truly just enjoyed each other's company, although I did endure a lot of teasing from my dear cousin over my frequent visits to the store.
Summer and Fall of 2012 went by rapidly. As Winter was approaching, unbeknownst to me, Shawn and his girlfriend broke up. After a while, he asked my mom if it would be alright if we went out to a movie sometime, just as friends. She talked to Dad and they agreed that it would be fine. One night, he called our house trying to set up a good time. He asked my mom if a certain date would work first, but I already had plans. That was the first time I became aware that he wanted to take me on a date. One of my best girlfriends was over at my house when he called, and we were beside ourselves with excitement. I honestly thought I was going to be sick. It all seemed so monumental. But it was just one date,right?
After a long comedy of errors, including five months of trying and failing to get a date together, we were able to schedule a day that worked for both of us in the Summer of 2013, shortly after he graduated high school a year ahead of me.
Our first date was wonderful, even though the movie was more inappropriate than we had anticipated and had a really sad ending.We laugh about it now. He was such a gentleman, and I felt completely safe. We went out to eat at Steak & Shake and our good conversations outweighed the sad movie. We were almost home when he said " We should do this again sometime." I readily agreed.
After that first date, we started seeing each other almost every day. He enjoyed being around my parents and our pets, and they enjoyed being around him. It was honestly a match made in heaven. But I had decided back in eighth grade that I was absolutely not going to date in high school, so certainly we would just continue as friends, right?
Yet I still needed to learn how to drive. He had volunteered to help me learn an entire year ago, but I had been too stubborn. Now that we were having such a good time together, I agreed. He would meet me at my house around six in the morning, and we would practice the maneuverability test in an elementary school's parking lot down the road. Why so early, you might ask? Well, the earlier we started our day, the longer we got to spend time with each other, of course. We were a hopeless case from the beginning.
Finally, the day came that I would take my first driving test. I passed the driving test with flying colors. Then came the maneuverability test. If any of you readers still need to get your license, make sure to practice with the small cones. Practicing with tall, roadside cones did not prepare me well. I failed. We went home, realizing that we would have to try again.
He asked me to go on a walk that evening. That same elementary school had a walking trail around it. So we walked, and played on the playground, and talked. We had begun a "get-to-know-you game" of ten questions before my driving test that morning. So we decided to finish it. We had covered about every possible topic with our questions. Our faith in God, our desire for purity, silly things about our childhood, you name it . . .
His last question? "What would you say if I asked you to be my girlfriend?"
And I said nothing . . . Great response, right? Eventually, I started talking and I didn't stop. We got in his car, and I kept talking. All of the reasons I had always said that I didn't want to date in high school started pouring out. I finally agreed to be his girlfriend as long as he had to understand.
1. I had some wonderful guy friends and jealousy would not be tolerated.
2.I absolutely wanted to stay pure.
3.He would need to talk to my dad personally and ask his permission.
This was my future we were talking about, he wasn't going to get off easy.
He agreed, and so did Dad.
That was the beginning of "us".
Looking back, it is hard to believe that this is our story. In all reality, not much time has passed since this story took place, but we have grown leaps and bounds since.
What about you? Is it hard to imagine yourselves at the beginning stages?
Stay tuned for more . . .
Keep living joyfully,