Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Day 6: {31 Days of Grace} ~ Pressing On

So I told you on Day 4 , or rather hinted, about a big change in my teenage life. As much as I would love to never speak of it again, I made a promise to tell this story and so that is where I will pick up today.

My junior year in high school I began working at a local restaurant.  It was my first job, gave me a little spending money, and money to pay Mom and Dad for car insurance and fill up that borrowed car with gas.

Just before summer, a past employee came back to work with us; he was home from college for the summer.  I'll call him John. 

As I had been in the past with other boys, I was fascinated with John.  I hung on every word he uttered! I wanted to hear, no, feel what college life was like.  
{Remember I said I always knew I would leave that little town and never come back to live there again? I was already plotting my escape and I had a least one year to go.}

So John and I worked together for a couple of weeks and we developed quite a friendship; we had things in common - interests, music, church.  It was so refreshing to meet a guy who wasn't afraid to say up front he was a Christian.

A few weeks into our friendship, two things happened: we found out the restaurant was closing down and John asked me out.  To be honest, I cannot remember at this point what our first date was; where we went, if he picked me up - none of it.  I only know, I was over the moon excited and it was sometime in June of 1993.  

The summer flew by and, not surprisingly, I fell hard and fast for John.  I was crushed when it was time for him to go back to school in the fall.  I worried that we wouldn't make it through my senior year in High School and his junior year of college. 

Somehow we did; seeing each other every possible opportunity.  Whenever he was home, Fall Break, Thanksgiving, Christmas, I was trying to find every way imaginable to be with him every second.  One of the things I found most appealing about John was his honesty.  He was always open and upfront with me; he told me about a difficult relationship that had ended just before he's returned to our little town that Spring.  He told me, shamefully, that he'd thought he was going to marry that girl.  That they had lived as if they were already married in some respects.  

To be honest with him, I shared some of my previous relationships too.  I felt so connected to him on every level, that I just wanted a completely brand new, 100% honest and trustworthy intimacy with him.

He really treated me like a princess and no one else had ever done that before! We had cute little pet names for each other and I really SAW my life stretched out before me, with him.

There were a couple of problems with our relationship; his mother hated me for some unknown reason {the first time she met me, she told his brother I was "homely" and that comment found it's way back to me}; we got way too serious way to fast; I didn't realize until much later, he was imposing on me some of the same demands his father likely imposed on his mother.

For the most part, we were happy! He came to my graduation, helped me get packed for college, helped me get settled in when I got there.
Did I mention I only applied to one college? The one he happened to attend? 
Now, mind you, it is the only place in our state to go for an engineering degree of the kind I intended to achieve, BUT it certainly didn't hurt that he was there.

Everything hummed along in perfect harmony until Christmas break my freshman year. 
That should have been my first clue that the relationship wasn't the life changing love-story I'd made it out to be...

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