Thursday, June 12, 2008

Part 2 - Don't Read if You Don't Like Romance Stories!

Today, Austin posted on his blog and wrote his version of how we met. He actually continued the story beyond where I left off a few days ago.I thought that maybe I should write more about what happened after I didn't think he was creepy anymore. Parts of the story have begun to get fuzzy to me, but I'll try my best. Here I go.

The night that Austin invited my sister and I to the barbeque party was the night that I realized he wasn't actually a weird stalker who was just interested in dating one of us. Carolyn and I began to hang out more with his buddies and we would meet up almost very single day at Coffee Station to study.

Austin met my family long before we ever started dating. My family would come down to College Station for the weekend and my mom would cook dinner at Nana's house. One weekend, we invited him to have dinner with us and he agreed to come. I think that time Carolyn and I tried to cook for everyone and it ended up not being as good as I wanted it to be. I'm thankful that it didn't scare Austin away!

Although I began to warm up a lot to Austin, things really changed the weekend that he invited us to the "farm". His family owns some land in Leona (where he is right now) and there is a little house on it. He invited us to go hang out, shoot guns, fish, build a campfire etc. with some of his friends. Carolyn and I went, and we had a blast. I became a real Texan that weekend! Carolyn and I decided to stay for two nights, and Austin's friends left for the second night. It freaked us out a little bit, but I reassured Carolyn that it would be okay.

That second night ended up being so much fun! Carolyn, Austin and I talked in the living room for hours before going to sleep. Carolyn actually got too tired and ended up going to bed, but Austin and I talked for a little while longer. I remember talking about past relationships, the job I had the previous summer, what we were passionate about and probably some more things. It was at that point that I began having feelings for Austin. I could tell that he genuinely loved people and cared deeply for everyone that he met. He was thoughtful and friendly and loved Christ with everything he was.

I denied that I liked him for a while, but every time I would hang out with him, he just got cooler. I prayed about our friendship a lot and realized that if God wanted our relationship to progress, then I would have to surrender. I left everything up to God and Austin, pretty much. I decided to let him pursue me if he wanted to. For me, this meant not telling Austin when I would be at Coffee Station and not initiating meetings with him (unless we were having a party or something at Nana's house).

I started going to Coffee Station on Sunday nights after church, where I would see Austin. It became a little tradition, and we would meet and talk about all sorts of things - from jobs to spiritual warfare, predesination, the Baptist church and Tongues. Austin had so much wisdom and knowledge and it blew me away. Even now I can still listen to Austin talk for hours and never get tired.

I got to meet Austin's sister Kristin when he invited me to go to the Hall with them one night. I had never been before, and I didn't know how to two-step, but they taught me beforehand at his house. I had so much fun! I even learned how to play pool. Kristin was so much fun and I had a blast hanging out with them. I loved that they were so close and had such a strong relationship. It reminded me of my relationship with Carolyn.

I remember the night that Austin asked me to lunch the next day. I wanted to scream and jump up and down - I was so excited! He ended up taking me on a surprise picnic in Academic Plaza. He did everything. He made the sandwiches (EXACTLY my favorite) and put special care into the drink he chose for me. It was by far the sweetest date I've ever been on. We ate underneath my favorite tree in Academic Plaza. I had actually written a little bit about it in my blog, but I didn't specify which tree it was or show a picture. He found it on his own by going to Academic Plaza and simply guessing. I was extremely impressed. Anyways, that was our first date. I wanted to climb the tree, but since I didn't know that we were going there, I hadn't dressed appropriately.We ended up just talking for about four hours instead, and it was great.

Every time I would hang out with Austin, Carolyn would ask me if he had said anything about dating yet. We never shared our feelings with each other and he had never openly stated his intentions. It drove Carolyn crazy, but I had an extreme peace about everything. I wasn't anxious to get into a relationship and was sincerely enjoying our friendship.

About a month after going to the farm, Austin sent me an email asking if I would go to Houston with him to celebrate his birthday with his family. He told me that if I wanted to bring Carolyn, then she could come, but he would prefer it if it was just me. I was so naive and I had no idea that he really liked me. I guess I thought, "Well, it means that he has more of an interest in me..." I really didn't have a clue.

Surrendering the relationship to God was so wonderful because I was no longer concerned about what was going to happen. I think that sometimes, being a girl is difficult because you are waiting a lot. Waiting for the guy to act or initiate or pursue you. It takes a lot of patience! God gave me so much patience, though, that I was never anxious about the relationship.

We had an absolute BLAST in Houston. I met his family and basically fell in love. Everyone was so friendly and hospitable! We ate at this great seafood restaurant at Kemah and walked along the boardwalk and ate Dippin Dots. Thinking back to that night, it's funny to think that I wasn't actually dating Austin at the time. Austin took me on a date the next day and we went to Rice Village for the afternoon. It ended up raining like crazy, so we spent most of the afternoon in Half Price Books looking at all sorts of things. Still, nothing was said about dating.

A few days after getting back to College Station, Austin asked me if I wanted to have another picnic and actually climb the tree this time. We went on a second picnic and again, Austin prepared everything. We talked for about five hours and Austin expressed his feelings. We climbed the tree and he grabbed my hand - I was seriously freaked out. Not only was I holding this guy's hand for the first time, but we were way up high on this tree branch! We talked for a little while longer about dating and then Austin prayed for our relationship before we went back to the car. That evening, we watched Singin' in the Rain and ate Totino's pizza. The whole day was simply grand.

...And that's how it started. I am trying to remember all the details, and that's the best that I can do.

I know this story might be kind of boring to most of you, but to be honest I primarily wrote it for myself. I needed a written out account of the story somewhere!

Alright. My fingers need a little rest! :)