Saturday, February 27, 2016

Our Story

Years ago, a dark-haired freshman girl walked slowly out of her Spanish class and towards the street running through campus, her thoughts filled with dreaming (and doubting) about the future.  Should she keep studying Spanish when her heart was for another part of the world?  What should she major in?  Where would she serve in ministry when she graduated from college?  Would she get married?  Her mind full of thoughts and details (and not so much on what was going on around her), she made her way towards the curb...

Meanwhile, a tall blond sophomore guy was whizzing down the main street of campus, really thinking about nothing else but how fast he could ride his bike, and if he could make a new record time getting across campus to his dorm where he served as a resident assistant.  He was focused on the goal, when suddenly...


Dark Haired Freshman Girl and Tall Blond Bike Riding Guy collided... literally.  He hit her as she walked (without looking both ways!) into the street.  She fell down.  He stopped to make sure she was ok.  They were both embarrassed.

That is the beginning of Our Story.

That is my husband's and my first memory of each other!  It wasn't really the beginning of a love story at that time (in fact, I stayed clear of blond guys riding bikes on campus for a long time after that!).  He went off to Scotland for study abroad, and I dropped Spanish and started focusing on Slavic linguistics.  When he came back from Scotland a year later, I went off to teach English in Russia.  Eventually, we were both back on campus, living in the dorms, in the same group of friends, serving together on our campus ministry's leadership team.  A year after that, he was the resident assistant on my dorm's floor.  A year after that, we started dating, after being friends for four years.    Two years later, after a break up, getting back together, him going to Guatemala, and me going to Ukraine, we got married.

2004 - our wedding
While our story may have started like a good romantic comedy, it definitely hasn't been all perfect movie material.  Of course, there were special, romantic moments -- like the first picnic he took me on under a weeping willow by a lake on campus, or the breezy evening he first talked to me about marriage while we sat on the rooftop terrace of his apartment building in Guatamala City, listening to mariachi music wafting up from the street.  There were the many times I noticed character attributes I admired in him...

2005 - back in Guatemala
But, it took years of us getting to know each other and realizing our personality differences (the over-thinker vs. the driven goal-oriented, as seen in our first memory) could be strengthening rather than hindering to our relationship.  We see now that we can balance each other out.  Together, we can carry out a plan (he is the one with a plan; I'm the one that questions and second guesses all the details).  We both had dreams of how we'd serve in ministry overseas, and now we're doing something different than either of us had expected... but, we know it's right where God wants us to be, together, even though I do still find it ironic that the day he hit me on his bike was the day I decided to stop studying Spanish... only to follow him to Latin America years later.  I'm so thankful to be married to this man who loves adventure, when I err to the side of caution; who is out-going and extroverted, when I'm more introverted; and who loves the Lord and his family with all his heart (ah - we strive to be the same on that!). 

celebrating 11 years of marriage and almost 8 years serving in Costa Rica
We, as missionary moms, are blessed to be married to men who have a heart for ministry.  I'm sure I'm not the only one who has a very different personality than her husband.  Are you able to focus on how this can be a strength and blessing as you work together?

How did you meet your husband?  What's your first memory of each other?  We'd love to hear your stories!!!


  1. My first memory was of a young guy working at a lumberyard with striking blue eyes that were all the more so because of the striped blue oxford that was their work uniform. He was shy, with a great radio voice, one of our larger than average church "darlings" who'd grown up there and his parents were serving as missionaries. It was the blue eyes and a willingness to consider missions that caught my attention. But... nothing happened for another 2-3 years. He probably doesn't even remember that day - as he thought my sister had gorgeous hair but restrained from pursuing her at all because one of his buddies had already mentioned that he thought my sister was attractive. (Story of my life - sometimes it is a pain having a drop-dead gorgeous sibling.) Good thing he never did ask my sis out - because I would've NEVER given him the time of day afterwards if he had. :-)

  2. So sweet. I love "how we met" stories. The first time I met my husband was in Biology 1, first semester of my freshman year. He was the lab assistant. We didn't start dating until 1/2 way through the next year, but became close friends first. Now we've been married almost 20 years.