Walmart Parking Lot
Saturday, June 4, 2011
our love story
I never wanted to get married. I never wanted children.
I had one goal in life and that was to be a career-driven woman who was not dependent on anyone.
I’ll never know why I decided to go to Walmart that June 4, 2011, Saturday morning at 7:30am. From the moment I got out of my car and saw him standing there smiling at me in the Walmart parking lot at 7:30am that Saturday morning, my life was forever changed.
I planned it all perfectly.
Residence: Charlotte, North Carolina
I flew home that weekend from Charlotte, North Carolina to go to a wedding. I thought I had planned it perfectly! Fly into St. Louis at the last second, and get in and out of Mount Carmel as quickly as possible, I mean I even had a 5am flight Sunday morning in St. Louis! I was convinced I had the full proof plan!
I got home just in time for the rehearsal dinner, went straight to Evansville, Indiana, stayed the night at a friends then headed home that Saturday morning to take a nap, shower and get ready to go back to the wedding. I would then be in Evansville the majority of the night and get home just in time to leave at 3am to make my 5am flight Sunday morning and be back in Charlotte by Sunday morning. I mean it was the PERFECT PLAN! In and out of Mt. Carmel before running into anyone, right?
*Bless my heart*
I should know by now that my life is a walking definition of the saying,
“we make plans while God laughs at us”.
Walmart Parking Lot
For some reason at 7:30am that Saturday morning, when I was making my way back to Mount Carmel to nap and get ready, I decided at the very last second to make a nascar turn into Walmart parking lot to go to pick up some DVDs to record the wedding. The whole time I was driving up to park my parent’s car I was cursing myself asking why in the world I was going to Walmart so early? I could easily stop by there on my way back to Evansville in a few short hours when I was heading back to the wedding. For some reason I still didn’t turn around to head back home. I kept driving. I parked my parent’s car still cursing myself knowing I was losing out on some very valuable “nap time”. As I am getting out of the car, I noticed someone was staring at me. The sun was so bright I could barely see, but then all of a sudden I got a good look at the man who was “checking me out” (as he quotes when he tells the story), and I said “Oh my gosh! I haven’t seen you in forever!”
It was him. Smiling so big at me, and he wasn’t even sure who I was just yet till I laughed (apparently I have a very distinctive laugh, not sure how I feel about this, lol).
We laughed, hugged, went shopping around Walmart together, and he was telling me all about the major changes in his life. I could see he had changed so much since I knew him in high school.
Something was so different about him.
OUR NIGHT TOGETHER
He was so excited when he started telling me about the house he was renting, and how he had all these plans to buy it one day and fix it up. He was so proud. He had to show me! So we headed back to town and I met him at his house. Let’s just say, it was a DUMP (I say that with the most proud thoughts, lol, but it was, I can’t even sugar coat it)! But the best part was that he was so proud because he knew what he could do with the [crack] house.
We had so much fun sitting outside talking about everything that had changed since the last time we saw each other. Neither of us even realized that four to five hours had just flew by and it was time for me to get ready and head to the wedding. I was actually SUPER LATE.
Needless to say, he was suppose to work that night, but decided to call in, for the very first time ever at the coal mine, to hang out with me. After the wedding, I [excitedly] came back to Mt Carmel to hang out with him for the night. He picked me up and we hung out with friends around the campfire till 3am when I had to leave to catch my flight in time.
I had so much fun. I honestly didn’t understand why I couldn’t stop smiling. No guy had ever made me feel that way after just hanging out for one night. Not like this, this was different. I tried to brush it off. I didn’t want to give it much thought. I mean I lived in Charlotte now, he was there, which I was NEVER ever going to move back there. So how in the world would this ever work?
He texted me the next morning and every morning from there-on-out. I never went without a “Good morning beautiful” text when he got off work the next morning. He never failed to make me smile every single morning. I knew where my heart was going and I knew what it meant to fall for him, it meant moving my [AINT NEVER GOING BACK TO THAT TOWN] butt right back to Mount Carmel. For some reason in my heart, I just knew I would have to move there, that if we chose each other, we were meant to live back in my ol’ small town. This was hard for me too because I was in love with Charlotte, NC, and wanted to stay there so bad. I mean I adored the city so much, I truly was trying to fight my feelings for Drew, but even I knew that was beginning to become impossible. Every road, every sign kept leading me to his face.
A couple weeks in I couldn’t take it anymore. I finally decided to ask him what he was thinking? I knew my feelings were growing stronger every day, FAST. It was so crazy to me, but I couldn’t help but feel we were on the same page. So me being me, I asked, “WHAT ARE YOU THINKING? TELL ME!” (Yes, I am pretty sure one of those texts truly was in all caps lol). He responded (after what felt like eternity, aka less than 5 mins), and I quote, “You’re sexy, smart, fun, good-looking in my arms, and put on this earth for me. And that house is awful big for just me.”
S P E E C H L E S S
If you have met me before you know a lack of words is never an issue for me. But that text, that moment, reading those words, I was truly speechless. Leave it to my future husband to be the one to make me lose my words ;)
After that, it all just fell into place so perfectly. So easy!
In a nutshell...
Our love story was official.
I moved home to be with him that same year at Thanksgiving (2011).
We were engaged a couple months later (March 27, 2012).
Married by September 22, 2012.
Bought our [1st] new home & moved in December 2012.
[Life happened before this decision was made to give up on his dream of turning that house into a fixer upper. Health issues caused us to change “the plan”.]
And then we were blessed with the most amazing gift of our lives, our first born son, Tyson Andrew (August 5, 2014).
Life continued to make a ton of twists and turns and we bought our second home on 6 acres of land in May of 2016. In 2017, I went full-time with my photography business (complete Act of God - that story coming soon too).
Fast forward another year and we were blessed with our 2nd most amazing gift of our lives, our daughter, Dylan Marie (July 2, 2018).
And now with our incredible son, a fighter from the womb graduating from NICU in just 17 days when his condition was suppose to keep him in much longer. But GOD! He had different plans for our little Micah Andrew (May 28, 2021).
Our hearts could not be more fulfilled. I seriously never would had dreamed this would be my future. That this kind of happiness was possible, but it is, it truly is so possible! I live it every day: the true act of God life! The life I never knew I always wanted. This amazing and incredible life with my amazing husband and our three ridiculously gorgeous three kids, and three angel fur-babies. There are just truly no words to describe the amazing way God has blessed my life.
I still have my career. And it is so much more than I even dreamed. But most of all, I found my true calling in life, next to my husband and best friend…
BEST. DECISION. EVER.
Everything I have ever thought I wanted, no longer matters. And everything I never knew I always wanted, is now my whole world. I have changed and grown so much it is truly remarkable. There have been some advancements and there have been some downgrades (still human here - super tired human), but I am truly so happy.
Our love story is a marathon of risks, laughter, and leaps of faith. It is the very definition of an “Act of God”.
The most amazing, chaotic, wonderfully nauseating (lol), truly beautiful act of God.