Our Story: How we “Met”

{I wanted to blog about how Ezra and I met, but in a way that would also share some of the inner workings of our courtship and some of our convictions. When the “story” is done, I have a list of questions that I’ll answer… feel free to ask some of your own along the way, and I will be sure to answer them! Ezra’s comments are in italics}

Our story is so long and complicated, I don’t know where to begin. The short answer is “we met online… but not that way” (quote James), but I know everyone wants more than that, so I’ll start at the beginning.
I don’t know when I noticed him on Apricotpie. He and his brother had been on for a little while before I started reading their writing. Ezra posted a lot of poetry, which I was not interested in at the time, having just studied a bunch of it for school. Our first interaction was March 21, 2008, when I left a comment on the third section of the story he was writing, Ellyra’s Song. Then on May 29 he commented on a short story of mine. I came to treasure his comments since they were well thought-out. I began to read his poetry, finding it to be weighty and serious, full of deep theological truth and emotion, not fluff. Our first “conversation” was on a poem he wrote called “Drifting,” which noted the shadow of the Glory in the things He has made – and we talked about shadows and glory and not being able to put the Glory into words.
I don’t remember exactly when I began to notice Kyleigh, either. However, I believe that by the time we had that conversation on the poem “Drifting”, I had already taken note of her as godly, and was honored by her enjoyment of my poem.
On June 4, 2009, he announced he was leaving apricotpie, and I started to realize how much his comments and posts meant to me. Still, he was reading my blog and would occasionally pop in, and it always made me happy when he did.
It also made me happy when she would comment on my own blog.
In August 2010, he wrote me asking if I would email his sister Rosie, saying he had noticed how like-minded our families were. I was delighted to and Rosie and I began writing back and forth. I began to realize that something might come of our “friendship,” though I thought it silly because we knew each other from online.
I think that at this point, I had dismissed it as, “highly unlikely”.
That was all for a while. From time to time if I had a writing question that involved theology as well as writing I would email a group of people from Apricotpie, Ezra among them, and he would reply with wisdom.

In May 2011, we were making plans to go to a conference in Portland and I began to hint at staying with the Dunns while we were down there. I knew Ezra might not be there so that wasn’t really on my mind but deep down there was a quiet hope there, and it was growing.

As the reality of our families meeting set in, it didn’t seem so strange that I was attracted to him since he was becoming a “real person.” I told daddy that I was guarding my heart regarding Ezra, struggling to keep my thoughts focused on God and not daydreaming. Among other things, daddy basically said that since Ezra was the guy and I was the girl… I’d just have to wait for him to initiate something.
I had a slight suspicion at some points that there were mutual feelings, but still always dismissed the whole thing as “highly unlikely” or even, “impossible”. In fact, I remember at one point praying, with no small amount of distress, “God, please giver her a good husband. And whoever he is, please work in him to make him more like You until they meet.” Or something to that effect. And since God has done so much in my life from that point until I began courting Kyleigh, it seems as though He answered that prayer. (I was praying the same thing for Ezra…)

Events when we visited his family caused those feelings to be forcibly put to rest. It was very hard, but I was glad to know that our families were friends and I could still be such good friends with his sister and other siblings.
I’d thought those feelings were gone until February when I saw an email from him in daddy’s inbox. I tried not to think anything of it, but thoughts would enter my mind. There could only be one reason I could think of that Ezra would be emailing daddy. But I trusted daddy and I trusted God. I thought, “If it is to court me, if daddy approves then he’ll let me know. If not, then it doesn’t concern me.” In late December 2011, daddy had told me while asking some general questions about courtship (“If… would you like it this way… etc.”), that he was just asking, that there was no one asking. He had asked me a few more questions since then of a similar sort, but they seemed normal to me, though I later found out they were about Ezra. About two weeks after daddy told me there wasn’t anyone… Ezra wrote him. So when I saw the email, daddy’s statement was rolling around in my head along with a million other thoughts. I managed to calm them pretty quickly, and thought nothing more of the email until April, when I was preparing to go visit my sister, brother-in-law, and niece.
When her father told Kyleigh that someone was interested in courting her, he also told me that he was not telling her who I was because that “might cloud her ability to think about the situation objectively”. At that point I suspected that she had at least expressed a serious respect for me to her parents earlier.
The night of April 8, daddy had told me they wanted to take me out for coffee/tea before I went to visit the Kadys. I began to get suspicious but really didn’t want to think about it too much.
And then we were drinking tea and they told me there was someone interested in courting me. From the nature of their comments, I could tell that it was someone I kind of knew, but they said he didn’t live in the country – and so my mind instantly drifted to Ezra. But when they asked if I wanted to know who it was, I said no, not yet. I was unsure of my readiness for courtship – not so much maturity but that I loved Dubai so much and had things I wanted to do before I got married.

The 10 days with the Kadys was full of prayer. I made pro/con lists, journaled a lot, and talked to Joel and Cait a lot, but was still unsure. One night I had a dream and in the dream the “mystery person” was really short and awkward. I woke up thinking “No. Just no,” but knew that was really irrational, and so I pulled on my running shoes, grabbed my watch and phone, left a note saying when I’d be back by, and set off down the lane. I had so many thoughts spinning in my head that I couldn’t sort through them, so I decided I would push those aside. I began to sing “Out of the Depths,” because it was the song that came to my head. I couldn’t remember all of it, but the few lines I did remember were important
“So more than watchmen for the morning
I will wait for You, my God
When my fears come with no warning
In Your Word I’ll put my trust
When the harvest time is over and I still see no fruit
I will wait, I will wait for You
… Don’t change the wisdom of Your will
In every trial and loss
My hope is in the cross
Where Your compassions never fail…”

That wasn’t the decision, but it was a turning point. Somehow, those words, especially “wisdom of Your will” brought me huge comfort and help. If I chose to enter this courtship, I knew He would use it and I knew His will would be done in it. But I still had reservations.
Over the next few days at the Kadys and on the flight home, I worked through those. I realized most, if not all, of them were selfish at root. And so I decided to push past my fears and love of self and take what felt like a mix of a step of faith and long-awaited desire.
During all of this, I was also in an extremely difficult situation at work. I was generally working about 14 stressful hours per day for seven days out of a nine-day week. There was also a significant spiritual struggle happening in my living situation, so that I was already relying on Christ to a very acute degree. This helped me alot in waiting for Kyleigh’s answer; I had already been forced to hand everything else over to God’s exclusive control, and to rely only on His providence, so that waiting for Kyleigh’s answer seemed only another facet of this. That is not to say, however, that I was not anxious for her decision.
During the four months leading up to that point, I had been in regular email conversation with her father to give him a chance, as Kyleigh’s protector, to see who I was. His help, care, and discipleship up to that point and through the rest of the process has been a large part of helping Kyleigh and me to honor God with our courtship and engagement.

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3 thoughts on “Our Story: How we “Met”

  1. homeschooledlady says:

    Kyleigh, thank you for sharing this! I know you told me some of this before, but still, I’m so glad to know even more.

    I remember reading that post about visiting your sister. I can’t believe one year has gone by so fast and that so much has changed in just a few months! 🙂

    Like

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