The Summer of '04
After leaving GL, we all said our goodbyes and left for the summer, this time knowing we wouldn't be coming back in September. I moved back home, returned to my summer waitressing job and began to think about all the stuff the FD had said to me over the past few weeks. As I mentioned, I was currently in a fairly serious relationship, that FD clearly did not think was right for me. He pointed out a number of reasons why he didn't think the relationship could last and, try as I might, I could not disagree with him.
So, summer began, I was at home and FD left to spend six weeks at camp. Without really knowing what was to come of the FD and myself, I made a very difficult decision and I broke things off with the boyfriend. It was one of the hardest things I had ever done because he was kind and sweet and, well, perfect. Just not perfect for me. He was a great guy but my heart was no longer fully committed to the relationship. Many people thought he and I were meant to be and could not understand why I was making this choice but I knew he was not meant to be my future husband and so the answer was clear to me. In the weeks following the break up, I was often asked if I broke up with him for the fabulous dude. I told them no and I still believe that this was an honest answer. Although the FD played a role, I believe the relationship would have ended regardless.
I spent the next six weeks wrestling. I wrestled with feelings of loneliness. I was away from my friends. After spending four years at boarding school, I had lost touch with most of my friends from town. I struggled with confusion over the next step in life. I was lined up to start university in the fall at the same school my brother and sister attended and the same school that the ex-boyfriend would also be attending. It was the only university I had applied to because I thought I knew exactly where I was heading and I was starting to doubt that decision. I wrestled with God. I prayed hard, I immersed myself in the Word and I was searching for answers. Looking back, I now realize I was closer to God at that point than I ever had been, or have been to this point.
Over that summer, I became closer to my parents than ever before. Along with waitressing, I also worked for my parents so I spent a lot of time with them, especially my mom. It was just the three of us at home and they knew I was struggling. At first they were upset with me about my decisions but they quickly realized that it was for the best. We tackled these issues together and decided that I would, in fact, enroll in university in the fall and if after a semester I wasn't happy with the decision, I would come home and re-evaluate my goals.
For the six week period that the FD was working at camp, I had no idea what would happen when he returned. I wrote him letters almost every day, sent him two care packages and even sent him a raspberry pie (his favourite) when my mom went to camp as a volunteer for a week. When my mom came home the first thing I asked her was if he sent anything for me. He hadn't. Over the whole summer I only got one letter from him. There where days when this really bothered me and then other days when I didn't care. I tried not to think much of it because I knew how busy camp was and I knew that he wasn't exactly the type to sit down and write letters (Remember when I mentioned that I did his homework and typed his reports in high school?).
When I finally received a letter from him, it was short and mostly consisted of small talk. But the last line read "I think of you often". I pondered the meaning of these words for days and days. I was certain that he wouldn't carelessly write that. He was a sensitive and thoughtful young man. I was sure it meant something for him to say that he thought of me often. This one simple line helped me to feel secure that it wasn't a big deal to not be getting letters upon letters upon letters from him. Looking back, I think I knew there was no need to be insecure because I trusted God had a plan and I would be content whether or not it involved the FD. And then, one Saturday, when I got home from work, mom told me he had called on his day off. I knew that the phone call meant he was missing me too.
So, I continued to wrestle.
August arrived and I knew that camp would soon be over, but I wasn't exactly sure when. I was surprised when I got a phone call early one Saturday morning from the FD. The conversation was fairly quick but went something like this, "I'm home from camp and my parents are on vacation. Can I come visit you?"
I said yes.
To be continued...
**Sorry about the lack of photos in this post but there are really none to share.
The Real Life Romance series is being linked up at MM&Ms at Musings of a Future Pastor's Wife