(My last post was about Scott more or less proposing to me by mail while he was on his mission. You might want to read that one first if you haven't already. )
...Finally, Scott was coming home from his mission. His parents picked him up and vacationed with him for a couple of weeks first, prolonging the agony. I was excited and nervous. I was at the airport with his family. He gave me a quick hug. It felt anti-climatic, but of course he hadn't been released yet. He was weird, distracted. Conversation did not come easily for us that evening. I went to his sacrament meeting the next day to hear him speak. I spent the day at his house, and we were able to spend some good time together talking and singing like old times. Finally I needed to leave, to drive back to school for my finals classes the next day. The details are a bit fuzzy, but I think I remember that he followed me out to tell me goodbye and noticed that something was wrong. I reluctantly told him that spending the weekend with him had not been what I expected it would be. I expected to pick up where we left off, or more, based on letters he had written to me in the last year. He explained that girls were a no-no for 2 years and he needed some time to adjust. He gave me another hug and sent me on my way. I hungered for a kiss, but I tried to not let it get to me.
Back at school, my roommates wanted all the sappy details. They expected me to be officially engaged. There was nothing to tell. He was weird, and it would be a while until we were engaged.
The next weekend, I planned a date for us. He seemed a lot more back to normal, but he still didn’t kiss me. I took him to see Legacy and to eat at the Garden Restaurant in the Joseph Smith Building.
A few days later, he drove up to my school to look for housing and to attend a Voice Male concert with me. (Most of the guys in Voice Male were in my college ward, and I was excited to share their music with Scott.) It was a wonderful evening. Come to think of it, he probably enjoyed it even more than I thought he would. He stayed at a friend’s apartment that night.
The next day, I was studying and taking final exams while he was looking for a place to live. He wanted to find a job and a place to live immediately, at the end of the school year, instead of waiting until fall. I got home that afternoon and there was a message from a lady for Scott regarding one of the apartments he had looked at. (No cell phones back then, so he gave her my number.) My roommate that took the message said that she asked for his fiance’. We laughed and shrugged about it. Later, Scott came and told me he thought he had found a good apartment for himself. He wanted me to come see what I thought of it before he signed the lease.
So, off we went. It was a cute little attic space of an old house. He showed me around. It was small, but sufficient for one bachelor. He told the lady he would take it. She pulled out the lease. He read through it and she pointed to a line and told him to sign. Then she asked me to sign on a different line…
I was really confused. Scott started to turn red. He hummed and hawed a bit, then sheepishly said, “They only rent this apartment to married couples. I told them I was engaged. I didn’t know that you would need to sign too.” The lady looked really uncomfortable and started apologizing profusely. I was suddenly a nervous wreck. The deal couldn’t be closed without my signature. Scott suggested that I sign and then we could go talk about it. I took the pen, my hand was shaking. Do I sign my maiden name or my married name? Married, the lady said. Holy Cow! (Not that I hadn’t practiced signing it in my journal a million times.) :-)
We left the house and drove up the road through campus, which then went immediately up the canyon. We were talking on the way, Scott nervously trying to explain himself: going to the temple, asking his dad for advice, and deciding that it was right to marry me as soon as possible, then apologizing for the way I found out. After a few minutes he pulled over and parked, turned to me and said, “Will you marry me?”
I was feeling a million different things all at once. I accepted of course. I was giddy and nervous and ANGRY! I was in the middle of final exams! I had exactly what I wanted, but it was unexpected. He had been home for about a week and a half. Tomorrow was my hardest final. I still needed to study. What was I going to do? I asked him for a blessing so that I could concentrate and study.
Another weird thing: he decided that for fun, since we still had not kissed in over 2 years, that we should wait until we were looking at each other across the temple alter and married before we kissed again. Based on how much we liked to make-out before he left, I kind of agreed that it might not be a bad idea. I quickly changed my mind, however, and I finally convinced him that it was a bad idea about a month before the wedding. Now I understand why he could actually handle the wait when I couldn’t. :)
The days went by. I moved home, he moved away to OUR new apartment, and we were mostly apart AGAIN! He came home when his work schedule would allow so that we could set a date, shop for rings, get photos taken, etc. We were only engaged for about 2 and a half months.
I was going to have Scott add a comment with this story, but maybe I'll just do it and let him get any details that I miss or remember wrong. On the way to get our photo taken for our announcement, I was ornery because he told me he didn't have the ring for me yet. We were on our way to Garden Park Ward Chapel, off of Yale Avenue in SLC. (It is a gorgeous location and frequently used for special photos!) I kept complaining on the way, so finally at a stop light, Scott shoved a little white box at me and said something to the affect of "Here. I was going to give this to you when we got there, all proper and such, but you can have it now if you want it so badly."
Ooops. I guess that one was my fault, although he was late picking me up for the photo, so the photographer was already there when we arrived. There would not have been time for a lovely, romantic proposal anyway. :)
During the engagement I had a some major cold feet at times, which seemed kind of strange to both of us because of the experiences we had the year before, as explained in my previous post. I think it was because of a few different things: I was worried about money (a condition inherited from my dad) and Scott's desire to have children immediately (and my being on meds for anxiety that I should probably quit before getting pregnant) and having only one year of college left (I REALLY wanted to finish my degree!). Also, I have actually wondered in the last few months if maybe my struggle at that point was some kind of warning from my Heavenly Father, letting me know that this commitment was utimately not going to be easy.
But finally, I accepted what we both felt was right, and here we are, 13 years later, without a decent proposal behind us. Maybe someday…
(We were laughing when the photographer posed us this way, since this scene had never actually happened...)
5 weeks ago