Real and Raw Part 1
Real and Raw Part 2
Real and Raw Part 3
Real and Raw Part 4
Real and Raw Part 5
Real and Raw Part 6
Real and Raw Part 7
Real and Raw Part 8
Real and Raw Part 9
Real and Raw Part 10
Real and Raw Part 11
Real and Raw Part 12
Real and Raw Part 13
Real and Raw Part 14
He looked into my eyes and kissed me. It was the greatest, most wonderful kiss in all the world. Time stood still and the moment I had been thinking about for six months was here. It was more perfect than I had planned or dreamed about. There was so much love, tenderness and meaning behind it. It was glorious. It was worth the wait.
Then he grabbed the small black box and said “I have a gift for you.” My heart went thumpity thump and I swallowed hard. He opened it up and there was a small ring in the shape of a cross with mini diamonds that looked like this…PHEWWWW!! As much as I wanted to marry Tim I just wasn’t ready in that moment to say yes to forever. It was such a perfect gift though. I got it sized down to wear on my pinkie.
The whole day was magical. After the kiss we went and sat on the dock near the ocean and talked. We stuck our feet in the water and up came three dolphins. WOW…AMAZING!
School resumed and we both were living off campus. I was a psychology major and Tim majored in communications. We spent most of our free time together or hanging out with other couples playing cards. I loved living off campus and playing house. I enjoyed cooking, baking, grocery shopping and even doing my share of the cleaning. My share of the rent was a whopping $165. My parents sent me money every month for my living expenses so I did not have to work while in college.
Our upbringings when it came to money was vastly different. Tim’s family didn’t grow up with a ton of money and my family was very comfortable. It really bothered Tim with how frivolous I was. I wasn’t great with money and it pretty much burned a hole in my pocket as soon as I had it. There were two things that Tim prayed would change in my life before he could marry me. One was that I would be better with my money. I always tell Tim it was his fault that I am so cheap. He prayed me into frugality 😉
My parents were still separated at this time. I was still hopeful they would reconcile. My mom taught me a lot about unconditional love through this time. During their separation she would have taken my dad back if he was willing to make some positive changes in his life. The longer they were apart the more obvious the inevitability of a divorce became. It doesn’t really matter what age you are when you parents divorce, it still shakes you up.
February rolled around and my mom came for a visit. It was weird having a house guest, especially my mom. My mom loves the pampered lifestyle. I am sure our little apartment with hand-me-down furniture and thrift store goodies was a stretch for her.
It was also our one-year anniversary and I knew Tim had a special date planned. I had a night class that got out at five o’clock. He picked me up from class and we went to Backyard Grill for dinner. Tim was wearing the same outfit that he wore on our first date. Backyard Grill was the place we had a very first “official” date at. When we arrived at the restaurant one of his buddies opened my door for me and valeted our car. He acted all professional and didn’t say a word. That was a nice touch. When we walked in the manager came over and told us he was expecting us and had a table all ready for us. We sat at the same table as our first date. Five minutes later the food arrived which was the same thing we ordered a year ago.
Then we went to the place of our first “unofficial date”. It was Waffle House. For those of you who have had the privilege of dining at that fine establishment you will realize why Tim will not allow me to say that was our first date. In the background there was the song that we first heard on our first “unofficial” date together.
Then we went back to his apartment and he had filled out a bunch of note cards of special things we did and we got to reminisce about the last year together. We just talked and laughed about all the silly things we said and did.
We got in the car and he drove me to downtown Lynchburg. In the middle of the town there was this long staircase and at the top is this beautiful rose garden. Tim said, “Race you to the top?!?” You know me by now to know I will never back down from a challenge. So I am climbing as fast as I can grabbing at his legs to slow him up and I won! He just wanted to race me so he would have a reason why his heart was pounding out of his chest. We got to the rose garden and being that it was February the roses were not in bloom. So we walked to a clearing in the garden where Tim had a friend place a single rose in the bush. He pointed it out to me so he could get the ring out of his pocket while I was preoccupied getting the rose.
He said, “Do you remember what we did here?” My brain was scrambling trying to remember. I knew I had been there before but I wasn’t sure if I went with Tim or a group of friends. I said, “Have we been here before?” Then he got down on one knee and pulled out a ring box and said “Rebecca Marie this is where I ask you to spend the rest of your life with me. Will you marry me?”
I knew we were going to get married one day but I totally was not expecting him to propose when he did. I should have put two and two together that was why my mom would come to visit me and put up with my ghetto apartment, but it didn’t occur to me.
My hand was shaking as he put the ring on my finger. I screamed, “Yes, of course I will marry you.” He lifted me in the air and twirled me around and kissed me. I started screaming, giggling and shouting, “I am going to be Mrs Timothy Farrant.”
I was so excited to get back to my apartment to show my mom my blingity–bling–bling. We got back to my apartment and I ran in to go show my mom my ring and there was thirty people in my apartment and yelled “Surprise!!!!” I started crying and put my head in Tim’s chest and said “No one has ever thrown me a surprise party before.” It was so fun. I got to show off my ring and celebrate with a bunch of people I adored.
I asked Tim later what he would have done with all the people in my apartment had I said no. He said he would have let me walk in there anyway and drive off and then I could explain it myself to everyone. LOL!
I remember going to chapel and making sure I sat on the right of Tim so I could put my arm around him and all the people behind me could see I was engaged. It was so fun to be engaged, especially at Liberty where there is such a huge pressure to make sure you get your Mrs. degree before you leave. I loved saying words like “wedding, bridesmaids and I especially loved the word “fiance.”
Since I was graduating in May and Tim would not be done until December we had a choice to make. We could either wait until after he was done with school and then get married or we could get married that summer. If we would have waited until he was done we would have to be apart for like 9 months because it would have made most sense for me to stay at home and work. NO THANKS! So we decided to get married August 15, 1998.
I graduated in May with my B.S. in Psychology. My mom, dad and Uncle Geno came up to watch me walk. I graduated a year early. It was not because I was super smart I just knew how to work the system.
I spent my summer working and saving up money. I spent the rest of my free time dreaming of my wedding day and especially my wedding night. We had saved ourselves for our wedding day so you better believe I was thinking about it!!!
Tim was in Washington D.C. for the summer doing an internship at a church. At this point Tim wasn’t planning on going into full-time ministry work but just felt led to do that for the summer. I was excited about that because in my head being in full-time ministry meant a life of being destitute, poor and having hand-me-down clothes.
August rolled around and so did my 21st birthday. Unfortunately that day got overshadowed by the last minute to-do’s before the wedding day. We thought it would be fun to do something zany with our wedding party. So we took them to downtown Chicago to Ed Debevic’s and to the Jenny Jones show. We got to be in the audience and Tim even asked a question to the panel members so he could be on T.V. Just a little something to make our wedding weekend memorable.
August 15th rolled around and it was a hot, humid day in Chicago. The weather didn’t effect my mood I was just so elated that the day I was dreaming about my whole life was here. The bridal march began. My arm was looped in my dad’s. I looked down the aisle and saw the man of my dreams with a tender smile waiting for me to walk down…