Shawn and I kind of knew each other for a little while before what Shawn likes to call our “first experience” of each other. Before this first experience, I wasn’t memorable to him, and he wasn’t to me. But one day, in October of 2010, a friend of mine invited me to come serve on a Saturday with City of Refuge- a body of believers who serves the poor and the needy 6 days a week through food distribution among many other ways of giving. This was the day that I say that I met Shawn. We served together, and then I of course went home and added him as a friend on Facebook.
There was an initial attraction there, but this was also a time that God was really speaking to my heart about the beauty of singleness. So, for about 5 months, I let go of any potential that I thought there might be with this hot hunk of a man.Then one day at the end of February 2011, I was out serving those who lived on the streets with people I was going to church with at the time. That night, we happened to run into some people from City of Refuge who were doing the same. I may or may not have repeatedly mentioned Shawn to a few of them. It had been a while and I wanted to make sure someone (anyone… all of them) would say hi for me (repeatedly…in sync… in perfect harmony… like the angels). Fortunately for me, there was an invite, not necessarily to me, to a worship night that they were having at City of Refuge the following night. Of course, I made sure to invite myself just to make sure.
After prettying myself up, I made my way over to the worship night. At the end of the night, a friend and I were sitting and talking about a scrabble game on the iPhone where you are able to play against other people you know (called Words with Friends). When Shawn had finished impressing one of his guy friends with his perfect abs (not that I had noticed), he came over and asked about the game we were talking about. I quickly told him that he could add me as a friend and we could play against each other. He made sure I knew that spelling wasn’t exactly his strong suit. I already knew that his abs were.So, we played game after game of scrabble. And we took full advantage of the little chat bubble in the top right corner of the screen. After weeks of this, Shawn decided to just give me his number. Then, we had more weeks of texting back and forth. And then, of course, he invited me to his 29th birthday party, which just so happened to be a superhero dance party. I dragged my little sister along and we danced the night away. The moment that Shawn fell madly in love with me was the moment that he saw me sprinting in circles around the dance floor, laughing and high fiving him every time I passed his green-masked face. I knew I had him.
He wasted no time inviting me to his friend’s birthday party the next night, where we learned to line dance and we listened to my least favorite music in the world. I say that I knew I liked Shawn A LOT by the fact that country music didn’t drive me out that door. When the night was over, Shawn asked me if we could go to a coffee shop and talk. We headed to The Filter and everything was laid out on the table. I like you. You like me. The whole shebang. I went home and told my mom everything, giggly like a little school girl.
So we started dating. It was 2 1/2 months of being “friends that like each other” before we decided to officially put a label on it. On my birthday, May 24th, I got this fine-looking man as a boyfriend. During all of this time, we knew that I was going to be going to Thailand for at least five months. Actually, back-tracking to that worship night in February, talking about Thailand was actually one of the conversations that we had where we totally connected.
Come August 2011, I was off to Thailand, temporarily leaving a man that I had fallen in love with. I had an incredible, life-changing experience in Thailand and it happened to be pretty incredible for our relationship as well. We fought to stay connected even across the world from each other.
Tn January 2012, my program ended and Shawn flew across the world to spend the last week in Thailand with me. He did other stuff while he was there, but for the sake of my “love story” I’m just going to say it was for me. We flew back to the States together and I (not so) patiently waited for a proposal. Finally, an eternity later, May 24 (my birthday- for those who haven’t put it together) I got an amazing proposal at that special coffee shop from the year prior. Of course I said yes and on September 22, 2012 we were married.
We moved to Santa Rosa, CA, a place that God put on both of our hearts to begin our journey as a family. Three months later, I was pregnant and on September 11, 2013 we had our sweet Elijah.
Now our journey continues as we move across the world to serve once again in Thailand.