Six years ago, on August 16, 2009, Terry and I went on our first date together. Afterwards he asked me to be his girlfriend.
Even though it was pouring ran, he came to the door to pick me up. He brought flowers, too. He took me to a movie (it was supposed to be “Funny People” but due to theater mishaps, it was “The Time Traveler’s Wife”) and then to dinner at Chili’s. One of my best friends told me that he asked her a few days earlier what my favorite restaurant was and Chili’s was it at the time.
At Chili’s, I remember he ordered chicken, because he knew I didn’t eat mammals and didn’t want to offend me. It took us a month for me to catch on and tell him it was okay, and he’s been ordering hamburgers ever since. 😉
After dinner, he drove me home, where we talked on my porch until my Mom said it was time to go in (just after 12:00 am). As I walked him to his car he asked, “So does this mean we are dating?” to which I replied, “I think I can handle that.”
He swears he knew within the first few weeks of knowing each other he was going to marry me. I was a little more skeptical, but skepticism is my nature.
When we met, we were both on the Impact Team, a worship group made up of 9th-12th graders from the South Carolina Nazarene District. I was in the chorus (go altos!) and he played electrical guitar. We didn’t notice each other at practices, but he happened to sit behind me on the bus during our week-long tour around the state. We hit it off quite instantly, always finding reasons to talk or hang out.
At sixteen, I wasn’t thinking about marriage. I was thinking how cool it was to meet a guy that loved Jesus, had a tattoo, could play guitar, and wanted to spend time with me. I also really liked that he was something new, that he didn’t know my past. That I could start fresh with him.
This past Saturday night, we went back to the same Chili’s where we had our first date. We were already in town to see some of our family, so we took the opportunity to revisit the place it all began.
While we dined together, I couldn’t help but think about how far we’ve come. We were so nervous around each other for the first few months. We went from being strangers to two people who spent close to every day together, up until I left for college.
On the way to the restaurant, Terry jokingly asked me why we never broke up. Statistically speaking, most couples who begin dating in high school (or for Terry, right after high school) don’t last. I joked and said it was because we were both too non-confrontational to perform a break-up. The truth, however, is that we both know that even when things got really hard- managing a long distant relationship, feeling burned out by having to communicate just by phone calls, or dealing with deep-rooted personal issues, being together even when it was painful was much better than not being together.
Terry and I are very different people. We have different interests and different ways of doing things. Yet, beyond those surface-level things, we connect on a soul-to-soul level. There is no other way to describe what he means to me except to say he’s “my person”. While I don’t believe in soul mates, I do we found each other by following God’s will and then choosing to commit our lives to one another.
So now that I’ve gotten all the mushy stuff out of the way, I want to share a little recap from Saturday, including our dinner.
After working at a very busy Panera from 5 am- 2 pm, Terry picked me up and we went to hang out with some of our family. I cherish every minute I get to spend with them. Especially my little brother who will be heading back to college in a few days for his sophomore year. Good luck to him!
I was a lucky girl that day, because my 4-year old nephew was being super sweet and wanted to smother me in hugs and kisses. I think he told me he loved me 5 or more different time. My heart is now melted somewhere on the floor.
After hanging out for a while, Terry and I headed to our date night. Random fact about me: I am an expert at changing clothes in the car 🙂
At the restaurant we opted for the Two for $20 deal, which includes an appetizer and two full meals.
I love going to restaurants with a bar, but not because of the alcohol, but because they will certainly have soda water and a lime to throw in it. For our appetizer we chose a winner, chips & salsa. The chips were warm and crispy (perhaps a little too salty) and the salsa was nice and spicy!
This picture is of Terry telling me how much new tires would cost and explaining to me why I needed to get new ones… awful foreshadowing as you will see.
For our entrees:
Mine: Mango chili chicken with broccoli and roasted tomatoes
The chicken was incredibly tender and juicy. I like getting meat at restaurants, because almost anywhere cooks it better than me. Meat is not my forte, y’all. The vegetables were okay. It seems like the side veggies never get enough love from the cook.
His: Carnita fajitas plus a side of southwestern mac n’ cheese
We left feeling very full and happy. We were both more than ready to head home for some sleep. Side note- isn’t it funny how when we went to Chili’s six years ago it was 9 pm and this year it was only but 6 pm? Yeah, we’re not teenagers anymore.
The fun did not end with dinner… about 15 miles away from home, we faced the unfortunate event of my front tire blowing.
After 6 years of being together, we had yet to be stuck on the side of the interstate together… new adventures can happen at any time! 😉 HUGE thank you to State Farm roadside assistance and Jack Rabbit for saving the day on a rainy dark night.
The evening was a great reminder to celebrate the one you love often. Thanks for loving me endlessly these past six years, Terry.