WARNING: This post may be a little more in-depth, mushy and personal than usual, so I apologize to any random stranger that stumbles onto this blog post, but this is a part of my life that I am so thankful for and really wanted to share from my heart! In my last blog post I mentioned how Matt and I started dating last June, and many of you have asked to hear more about our story, so bear with me as I try to summarize it as much as possible!
Some of you already know me very well, and maybe some of you know Matt. But for those of you who don't know me personally (apparently there's a woman from Texas that reads my blog!? Hello lady from Texas!) I will do my best to explain my background a little bit without boring the people that already know me!
I've been going to Landmark Church for almost three years now. It was there that I joined a small singles bible study group (containing about 20ish people), and about six months later, Matt joined the group as well. The first night he came to bible study we didn't talk hardly at all except going around in a circle and introducing ourselves via first name. He didn't phase me at all; just some random new guy wearing a stupid Packers t-shirt. When I was leaving I didn't even say goodbye to him...does that prove how much I was not attracted to him?! As I was grabbing my purse and keys, Matt was talking with someone and I overheard him say something along the lines of "the pigs at my house"....I grew up on a hog farm so I have this weird attachment with pork and I may or may not have a monthly newsletter subscription to PorkNetwork. I immediately spun around and yelled across the room "You have pigs?!" I wish I could say it was love at first mention of bacon, but it didn't exactly go like that. Matt and I had a short conversation regarding the pot-bellied pig that lived on his parent's tiny farm and then I left.
That night, I could literally not get Matt out of my head. I wasn't attracted to him or crushing on him and I wasn't freaked out by him; I was just feeling very strange about him. Overwhelmingly strange. I just had this overwhelming desire to talk to him and get to know him better. Some people say that they knew they were going to marry someone the day they met them. I wasn't quite there, but I was 95% there. It was the most interesting-exciting-terrifying emotion I have ever experienced.
Over the next few months Matt was consistently attending our bible study group and joining our weekly group frisbee outings and we continued to get to know each other better. Our bible study group is a very tight knit group of friends and Matt meshed perfectly with all of us; the group is absolutely wonderful. At first, I just really enjoyed getting to know Matt and see him interact with our group. He was genuine, smart, non-judgmental and very easy going and I truly enjoyed our friendship. After a few months I noticed that he started to make a bigger effort to sit next to me at bible study, or he would go out of his way to be able to stand next to me or be able to talk to me. Honestly, it really scared me. I was comfortable being his friend, but I felt his actions were suggesting otherwise. Matt is an extremely easy person to read and I immediately knew what he was up to, and it concerned me. I wasn't sure if I was prepared or ready for that, so I did the only thing I thought would work...I completely ignored him. And of course it didn't work. Apparently Matt was more pursuing than I expected him to be.
As I noticed Matt and I becoming closer, I brought it up to my parents. They were visiting me in Cincinnati for the weekend and we had a lot of great, in-depth, meaningful conversations regarding relationships. I cannot begin to explain how supportive, encouraging and prayerful my parents have been for me, not only throughout my entire life, but especially through this dating process! I can't imagine their thought process as they see their rambunctious-dangerous-crazy-adventurous daughter run off to the big scary city of Cincinnati to study artsy stuff and then start talking about boys. I mean, boys have cooties, if that were my child I'd bring out the shotguns big time. Just sayin. But seriously, my parents are the best. Not a day goes by where I'm not thankful for them and their unconditional love and overflowing support.
At this point it had been over three months since I had met Matt, and over the next two months Matt and I proceeded to discuss more in-depth the possibility of a relationship. We both prayed about it earnestly for months, and since we are both very close with our Pastor at church, Matt and I both met with him separately on many occasions to seek out wisdom to beginning a godly relationship together. During these few months, Matt and I hashed out a lot of major topics to prepare ourselves for a relationship. The most important thing was that both of us wanted the intentions of our relationship to be for the purpose of preparing ourselves for marriage.
It wasn't until after many Many MANY conversations about marriage that I realized how attracted I was to Matt. Usually relationships start with physical attraction, then lead to the talking/emotional connection, but I'm thankful it was opposite for me. I know sometimes people can get caught up in physical looks and that can really hinder God's direction for one's life, but in my situation, I was 100% peaceful about beginning a relationship with this man before I started to develop those feelings for him. I love God's perfect timing!!
One evening, Matt and I met my parents halfway between our respective places of residence to eat dinner together. It was then that Matt asked my parents for their permission to pursue a relationship with me. It was such a sweet notion on Matt's part, and it was so neat to experience my parent's blessing.
Lucky for Matt, he is very pursuing, determined and stubborn (but not as stubborn as me!)....it took him FOUR times of asking me to be his girlfriend before I said yes. (I'm just a LITTLE stubborn).
He has become my best friend, my gym buddy, my person-i-drag-to-the-grocery-store-with-me-when-i-don't-want-to-go-by-myself person, my prayer partner, my secret keeper, my coffee picker-uper, my favorite person in the world and so So SO much more. I am so incredibly blessed and thankful that God put him in my life in His perfect timing. God's perfect will for our lives, and His perfect timing is always way better than what we want for ourselves. It took 23 years to wait on God's perfect timing, but waiting for God's chosen man for me was worth it!
(my tripod makes a really great photographer, don't you think?)
I couldn't be happier or more blessed! God is so good!
Much love, B