Many of you know that our early relationship was more ‘Pride and Prejudice’ than ‘The Notebook’. Mickayeen will be the first to admit that he was pretty much a jerk when we first met and I have never understood the bad-boy appeal. I mean, look at this punk! He looked like a stoner.
He will tell you that I wasn’t exactly Mother Teresa to him either. Our first conversation featured me being a little bit more than standoffish. He’d call it “witchy with a capital B”. I’m sure my face was something like this:
Regardless of our spark-less start, Heavenly Father had other ideas.
Through a stroke of fate, I started dating Mickayeen’s closer friends. We would all meet up at lunch to play ultimate frisbee in a patchy area near the high school. Real romantic stuff here. Through the course of our lunches, Mickayeen and I started to get to know each other and our feelings slowly began to thaw.
Over the next four months, we grew closer in our friendship. We would text or email back and forth in the evenings, spend our free period together in the library, etc. By December, he had started and ended a relationship with another girl and I had ended my relationship and started another. Still, over Christmas break we saw each other more than I saw my long-distance boyfriend, grabbing frozen yogurt and even seeing Harry Potter 7 Part 1 together in theaters (he calls that our first date. It wasn’t).
On New Year’s Eve Eve we went to a Stake-organized dance. He was a dork and entered a jalapeño eating contest, which he won (and he hasn’t eaten them since). He got to meet my best friend, Sariah, and they embarked on their own rocky relationship as best friend/boyfriend. But most importantly, it finally hit me in the face that he was into me and I returned the feeling.
Up until this point, he had professed a “brotherly” love for me, but everyone else on the planet could see more. Everyone but me, that is. I stuck to his alibi like glue, and it took a late-night conversation where the words “isn’t it obvious?” were spoken before it finally was obvious.
School was back in session. We continued hanging out and I dropped the boyfriend I barely spoke to and never saw. Mickayeen came over for the NCAA Football Championship game (he could tell you who played and what the final score was; I cannot) and met my parents. The gutsy guy even held my hand right in front of my mom the first time they met. We weren’t official.
On January 18th, 2011, we decided to hang around after school for the basketball game that night. He held my hand again as we walked the good distance to CSU campus where we picked up sandwiches for dinner. Our seminary teacher told us later that she had witnessed the hand-holding while driving by. I’m sure she was more than a little surprised.
At the game, I came to the decision that I didn’t feel like waiting around anymore. I may have planted a bug in my friend Erin to encourage Mickayeen to officially ask to date me when the band played “Hey Baby” like they tend to do. Of course, they never played the song again after she dropped the big hint.
Driving him home afterwards, Mickayeen told me what Erin had told him (she conveniently left me out of it) and asked what my response would’ve been. I told him I would have said ‘yes’ and he proceeded to beat himself up for a solid hour, flipping through radio stations frantically before finding the right song to provide background to his question. Sitting outside his house in my parent’s car, I enjoyed watching his internal struggle as he furrowed his brow, starting a sentence only to stop it, reconsidering.
“You’ll be in my heart” by Phil Collins ended up being the song playing – it was incredibly cheesy, but it also foreshadowed some of the adversity and emotions we would experience together in the future. He turned to me and with a straight face asked me, “Meghan, will you be my girl?” It meant everything to a sixteen-year-old romantic like myself.
That was SIX WHOLE YEARS AGO today! It’s crazy to remember the starry-eyed youthfulness (read: ignorance) of our beginnings. We have come so far since then! I absolutely love the legacy we have built thus far and I am even more grateful that we have eternity to keep building it together.