We were on our way to the airport. I can't remember why she was riding with me and not her folks. LAX is the #1 gateway to the Asia Pacific and is served by over 90 passenger or cargo airlines. She would be boarding a Japanese Airlines 747 headed to Tokyo before connecting to Jakarta in the morning. The whole decision for her to go was kind of weird, but finding God's will is never an easy thing. Helping missionary children in a foreign country sounds like something HE would be for. That had been one of the struggles as we dreamed together; I wanted to serve youth and church planters at American churches and she had this "heart for missions". Besides all the other reasons people are hesitant to get married ( family, finances, fear); there was this tension in wanting the other person to be used by God in the ways that HE had uniquely planned for each of us. We had been together for 5 years. She was a freshman, when we started "going out". High School Sweet Hearts seemed like an understatement. Neither of us had dated anyone else during our post adolescent lives. Now we were going to be on separate continents for the next five months. We were on the 105, just minutes from the airport and I said; "I think we should put things on hold while you're away. Maybe we should date other people". This made so much sense at the moment, but in hind set I think it was the dumbest thing I've ever said in my life!
She did not meet any Indo boys to run away with and marry (true love could have happened despite a massive language barrier). She did not meet some much more godly missionary dude who would be better for her than me ( probably because the only "missionary dude" there was married and the father of the kids she would serve). It seems silly but I actually thought one of these things might have happened.
I asked three girls to spend time with me as "just friends". One told me no and the other two drove me crazy! It was about six weeks before I sold my soul to AT&T long distance and became an AOL IM freak. She came home in June to see her sister graduate, was confused about that whole missions calling thing, and was more in love with me than when she left. I was so happy to have her back in good ol' North America, and knew that she was "the one".
We were married the next fall; September 23, 2000. That's the day my life changed. She is the best thing that ever happened to me. She is beautiful, smart, and has a christ-like compassion for others that keeps me on track. It has been an amazing ride. '02 brought kiddo #1, barely. '04 brought kiddo #2, my first girl. '06 brought kiddo #3, my baby. '07 brought the procedure that says this is enough. We are looking forward to other "new life" and "births" into our journey and have become acutely aware of the even year pattern. We might have '08 figured out, but I'm still dreaming about '10. Did I just say '10? I met my life in the 80's. Back when TMNT was live action and Transformers were still on the small screen. We survived the 90's together, and have spent most of the new millennium married. She has been a part of my life longer then she wasn't, and I hate being apart from her. She is the best!
One word of advice for my non-married readers. On your way to drop your girl off at the airport, is the WRONG time to say, "let's date other people."