The summer of 2007, after the first semester of college, I finally got my driver’s license. Luke, several friends, a few siblings, and I began filming a movie we had been working on writing. Mostly Luke wrote it and I made criticisms that he sometimes listened to.
I got to know some of his friends from church pretty well while filming. When he introduced me to them at the readthrough of the script, there was a distinct note of pride in his voice.
My parents knew all along I was intending to do the movie with Luke (I hadn’t realized at first that it would be a huge production, which we’d never actually finish), but apparently I never actually asked permission (I was 19 by now), so I got a few angry lectures about that, especially because Mom relied on me to be at home during the summer to help her with the housework and the kids. It was enough of a sacrifice on her behalf to let me go to school, but for me to be gone ‘for fun’ so often made her angry. I, however, was having the time of my life, spending so much time with friends.
Then came August, and the beginning of the fall 2007 semester. At some point before the semester began, another meeting that would be important to my future took place, and once again I was not present. This time it was Luke and my dad, and Luke was asking to court me ‘with intentions of marriage.’ Dad anticipated the question and bought him a watch to welcome him into the family.
The first day of school, Luke and I got lunch like we usually did. It was kind of a tradition by then, and so I didn’t even think to ask my parents. We just went about a ¼ of a block from the school — barely off campus — and got some fast food. I got in so much trouble later, because Luke and I weren’t yet courting and we certainly weren’t married, and yet here we were, going on a ‘date’, without asking permission from my parents. It was impure and inappropriate, according to my parents. Of course, Luke had already announced his intentions to court me, but I didn’t know that yet, so I couldn’t use that to justify our lunch.
At the end of the first week of school, Luke and my parents hatched a plan for him to pop the question.
It was a beautiful moment. I was in love before, but I finally felt free to feel all those feelings. I was so giddy from these new feelings of loving and being loved that I was clumsy and nearly sleepless for several days.
I thought that everything would be pretty smooth sailing now that Luke and I were an official couple. I was not correct.