Nothing over the past eighteen months has been the full story, because other things were happening in my life that affected my heart, but were too close for me to share.
Finding my BOAZ
Until now, that is.
Just hours after driving from Frisco, Texas to West Monroe, Louisiana – 304.7 miles
I was on the ground, getting this shoot…that is apart of my series Nature-n-Motion
Before he was helping me up off the ground and while I turned back around to pick up my camera and tripod – he had pull a ring box out of thin air.
I was amazed. Plus, yes I was in absolute shock on two points one… OMG he wants to wake up to me for the rest of our lives… two… that he didn’t get down on one knee. However, my head was still spinning, because I can’t believe this is real life.
So, how did it happen?
His name is Adam Joseph Jaspers. He was born in La Porte, Indiana and raised in Pennsylvania and Louisiana. He’s the most steady, humble, honest man I’ve ever met. He loves coffee, tea, people, laughter, reading, the show “Top Gear“, family, and most of all, the Gospel. He has dark hair, he sometimes wears his glasses, when he is feeling lazy, and other times he wears his contacts, and a inch long beard, he loves patterns.
Our Story | Pre-dating
How we met: It was the summer after I broke up with my first “serious” boyfriend, after losing my high school sweetheart in a car crash- just one month after high school graduation and his proposal… I had poured myself into church relationship and trying to rebuild my life with Christ. Adam was attending Louisiana Tech University in 2009, as a Freshman, and joined the Marching Band, “Band of Pride.” He was very involved and deeply invested in music. I was a Senior at Louisiana Tech University, and being a member of the Band of Pride. Very first day of band camp, September 6th – we skipped all of the unnecessary marching drills, due to the fact that we had a home, in two weeks. -vs Nicholls State Colonels … don’t worry we won.
Becoming friends: So the band not only had to learn a half time show, but also Pre-game. As a member of the Color Guard, I was waiting to be assigned to my field position number for the year… it was like your band id. Don’t forget it. Each tuba player is paired with a Color Guard member for the marching band season. On the hot summer parking lot, AKA THE GRINDER (painted white to resemble the football field) , I meet my tuba buddy, Adam –to me, this new tuba buddy was a breath of fresh air and humor- since my tuba buddy for the last two years was that man I had broken up with just a few months – and we weren’t on speaking terms. So I got position number 1. We became friends though many hours of band practice and football games! Adam accomplished to break through my walls and became one of my best friends, and a member of my INNER CIRCLE.. – big steps only two other people are in this circle – my grandfather (who is my best friend) and my sister… Over the years we have shared our secrets, joys and griefs. Through ever relationship gone badly or helping with the grief of losing a loved one, we had become inseparable. It was one friendship that I worked hard to keep, and still do. When one of us was in trouble, the other is always there no matter what.
Learning trust & waiting well: Quick steps — After two years, I graduated with my Bachelors of Science in Chemistry (2011) – and returned home to Tejas AKA Texas… and began working at a international chemical company
(not mentioning the name) since I never really fit in with the rest of the Chemical Team. I didn’t realize that I was going down a very dark path, when I decide that paying my bills was more important then my soul. Adam and I spoke almost everyday, via text and sometimes calls. WE HAD FRIEND ZONED EACH OTHER.
And then suddenly: FLASH – Early February of 2014, after five years of friendship, Adam asked my to come to his college graduation. I agreed.. I was not going to miss it. I didn’t realize what was going on in the background… March 1, 2014 (early morning) – the day of Adam’s graduation- we were at a band party – one of our mutual friends (and assigned band son – it’s a band thing!) – Vance, finally told us, that we needed to stop fighting our fire with water and start add more matches. (Vance is the man in the picture below with the red hat on.) He didn’t understand what our reasoning was for not being together, but we needed to figure it out and get over it. We discovered that we were just waiting to know that we could survive being together if we became more than friends. This step was scary!!!
It took us five great years of friendship to realize that what we both wanted and needed was right in front of us!
Our Story | First Date
Long distance– our first date never really happened. Our first date was probably on Skype. WE TALKED FOR HOURS – laughing, talking about our days….
Dating wasn’t a hard, bumpy road, by any stretch of the imagination— He proposed on the first day of our relationship, both really wanted to be married, and both struggled for the first few months to know how to do this well. After so many years of keeping my heart on lockdown, I found it very difficult to open up and be vulnerable with Adam. For Adam, we both knew that I was much less emotionally “in” than he was at the beginning, and he dealt with a good bit of uncertainty. But match up to other couples we know, dating was, for the most part, sweet. We both agree that we’re just excited to be married. we loved dating each other, but hated dating, in general, lost distance dating is even harder.
Crazy Side Story: At Louisiana Tech, there is a fountain in the middle of the square, called the “Lady of the Mist,” at Freshman Commencement, every freshman learn the Tenets of Tech when they receive a medallion, to throw into the Lady of the Mist, after walking down the alumni path by candlelit. The symbolize behind throwing the medallion into the fountain as a investment from themselves and Louisiana Tech.
TENETS OF TECH
CONFIDENCE | EXCELLENCE | COMMITMENT | KNOWLEDGE | INTEGRITY | RESPECT | LEADERSHIP | LOYALTY | ENTHUSIASM | CARING | HOPE | PRIDE
Upon graduation, each student not only receives their diploma but also a medallion, not the same medallion they threw into the Lady of the Mist, four or more years before. This has quickly become a rite of passage for new Tech students making the transition from high school to college. However, neither Adam or myself were able to experience this rite of passage.
Side story: The Saturday before, Adam and Vance ( who got us in this mess) had gone out “SHOPPING” and I was to stay at home with Vance’s wife – Becca and watch some tv and enjoy girl time. Three hours later, they return. No idea where they went, what they did. Nobody said anything.
Most girls I talk to say that they don’t really remember what their hubby-to-be said when he proposed. I remember everything that Adam said. There are lots of other things that I don’t remember, like how my camera left my hands and ended up safely on the ground, or what I said , but I remember all of the words.
Actually, if we are honest. no words were spoken.
No, I didn’t cry. I was so overwhelmed by the fact that it was happening – really happening, right then – that I went completely numb to the core. It was all so much all at once. To go from fighting against reading into things, and guessing time frames, to seeing him on one knee, and he’s giving me a ring, and telling me that he wants me for the rest of our lives, and that he loves me, and it was all so much all at once that I couldn’t take it in. I cried for the first time Sunday when I was driving back to Texas.
Whenever I interview with a couple about photographing their wedding, I like to ask them when/how they knew that this was the person they wanted to spend the rest of their lives with. Their answers vary— for some it’s like a flash of lightening; for others more like a slow dawn and one day they just realize that they know; for others it’s a decision that combines logic and emotion; and some have a combination of those experiences. I have no idea what mine was like. You would think that I would know, since I ask that question so often. But I don’t. It was slow, and dawning, and yes, there were moments when I felt more convinced than others, but I honestly think it had more to do with learning to trust God and trust Adam for what the future would hold, and less to do with being convinced of my own knowledge in the fact. I knew months before he asked me out that he was the kind of man I wanted to marry— his character, his strengths, his love for Christ, his leadership, and his servant’s heart were all things that I saw in Adam, and knew I needed in a husband. Somewhere, at some point, it changed from “someone like Adam” to “Adam,” and I don’t know when that change took place. But it did, and there is literally no other man in the world I could dream of loving and trusting and spending the rest of my life with, besides Adam Jaspers.
I’m still overwhelmed. It’s all so surreal. Every time I look at my ring I think, “Is that real? Is it really mine? This can’t be reality.” Every time I look at Adam I think, “He wants to marry me? How is this real life??!?” This ring? perfect in every way. It’s a thin band, nothing too gaudy or flashy. Pear cut diamond (my faaaavorite!!) in a halo setting, but again, nothing too big.
But it is real life. We are getting married! And we’re already over-our-heads with planning for our wedding and our future together. You wouldn’t believe me if I told you all of the things we’ve done in the last nine months!!
We are overwhelmed with joy & excitement, and humbled by the amount of happiness shown by our friends and family.
And for those of you who want to know details… more will come later. As of now we’re planning on an August wedding (of this year! yes, you read that correctly! less than three months away!!!), and plan to be married at the place that has meant so much for us, our relationship, and our individual walks with Christ.