How we became US…PART ONE
It is hard to believe Andrew and I met nearly 9 years ago. I was 17 and a little bit lost. I had been involved with a youth ministry and church because of a good friend of mine. I attended weekly but still walked out every week feeling confused. I was in and out of painful relationships and decided all guys were pretty much terrible. I struggled with giving into the party scene and the pressures I was surrounded by. A man by the name of John from the church I was attending had passionately pursued me about working at his Christian book store for a good six months. He kept telling me the job was so they could mentor me and I could get some help with the things I struggled with. I always pushed him away and gave him a million excuses. After one last final wound to my heart I decided I couldn’t live life like this anymore!
I reached out in January 06′ and took the job. I was nervous. Even embarrassed. I didn’t want to work at a Christian bookstore. I thought it was so lame and embarrassing. Teenage pride at its finest. The good thing though.. My friend said there was a guy who worked there that she knew I would like!! Should have been the last thing on my mind!!
My first day they sat me on the side of the store we called “gift side”. I was over there by myself when Andrew walked over and introduced himself. I wasn’t necessarily swoon by him from the start but I realized pretty quickly he was a real deal guy. He seemed so innocent and you could tell he was passionate about his relationship with Jesus. I was kind of afraid of that but I was intrigued by how different he was.
Hold on for a minute and let me give you some of Andrews info! He had moved to Columbus, OH to attend a bible college in the fall of 05′. He had just started his second semester in college. He got the job at the bookstore because friends of his in PA were related to the owner of the store in Ohio. It worked out great for Andrew because he worked at a bookstore in PA and already had experience. So anyways, by the time I had started working at Moments, Andrew had worked there about 6+ months. He was a ramen noodle eating, poor college student. 😀
Back to the story! Everyday I came in I would look forward to my small talks with him. I can remember talking to my sister and telling her that everyone I worked with was weird and nerdy. .. They talked about books all the time!! Ha who knew at a bookstore?!? I told her about Andrew and she teased me “Watch! He will probably be your husband!” About two weeks into the job I noticed I had already grown spiritually. I was praying, reading, and actively cutting out bad things in my life. I also realized that for the first time ever I had an attraction to a guy that was NOT physical first. It actually made me really nervous. I prayed and asked God why I had these feelings when I obviously knew I needed to give up dating. I felt The Lord speak to me that day and say “The choices you make in your life lead you to the relationships you pursue.. Do you want a good man like Andrew or do you want the guy who keeps leaving you for another girl ? Focus on yourself and making the right decisions first!”
I think this was my lightbulb moment. I decided enough was enough. I started pruning things out of my life, investing in my youth group and church, and building relationships with other like minded people. I was not making these changes FOR Andrew I just knew that if I wanted a guy who had a heart like his.. I needed to change! I kept my eyes focused on myself and getting healthier. A couple months after Andrew asked me out on a group date. I brought a friend and he brought a friend. It was awkward but the start of realizing there was more interest.
Push forward to October 2006, he finally asked me to be his girlfriend! I say finally because it felt like forever then.. but it really wasn’t! We had met in February.. started talking in April. So we talked and go to know each other for 6 months before we officially dated. We dated until May of 2007 and then broke up for a few short (LONG!) weeks. We had so much maturing to do and the breakup made us realize that. We both worked on ourselves during that time and quickly realized we wanted to live our lives with each other. I often tell people that you don’t realize what you have until it is gone. Sometimes I think life works that way just to get us to open our eyes. By fall of 2007 we were committed to each other again but this time more seriously. Andrew decided to move back to PA to pursue youth ministry there. It was hard to think of him being away but I knew it wasn’t goodbye. We agreed to long distance and knew forever with each other was our goal.
Long distance was hard, long, and made for a very impatient me! I was eager for a ring so we could be near each other again. I bugged him more than I should have about getting married. Finally a year later Andrew proposed! Next on the blog… Our proposal and wedding story!
Sharing, serving, celebrating,
Andrew + Chrissy