March 23, 2006

A story for the ages (Final part)

After we returned from Kathmandu the last few weeks of the study abroad were somewhat of a blur. Obviously C and I spent a ton of time together, just about every free second. It didn't take too long for the rest of the group to figure out what was going on. Most people were okay with it, although a couple knew Kyle and kept hinting they were going to e-mail him and break the news. I had made the decision that I would wait until I was back in Michigan to tell him. I still believed that he deserved a face to face conversation.

Somewhere in the midst of the last couple of weeks, C told me that he loved me. We were sitting up on the roof of my house just as the sun was setting. He pulled out his journal and began reading this incredible poem that he had written. (Yeah, he used to be that sentimental.) At the end he looked me in eyes, told me he loved me and said that f we never spent another day together once we were back in Michigan, he'd still consider the trip the most incredible experience of his life. Without a doubt I knew that we'd be together when all was said and done.

We flew back to Michigan on Good Friday of 1999. My family, Kyle and my best friend Jenn were all at the airport to greet me. I cried almost the whole flight from Newark to Detroit, scared of what I had to face when I got off the place. Deep down inside I was terrified that Kyle would ask me right there in the airport to marry him. Thankfully, he didn't.

Against my better judgment, I didn't break up with Kyle over the weekend since it was Easter. I figured there would be plenty of time the week after. Late that night on Easter Sunday I drove back to Michigan State, to wrap up a paper from an independent study course. Partially, I was in a hurry to get closer to C and to spill the beans to Jenn. I knew that she was smart enough to start putting two and two together. More importantly I think I was trying to hide from the inevitable.

Early in that week I broke up with Kyle. It was ugly. I'm sure to this day he calls me every name in the book, with a few extra expletives thrown in for good measure. I chickened out somewhat, not telling him the full truth. I told him that my trip had shown me that we were too different, that it wouldn't work. I omitted the part about C, figured I didn't need to add insult to injury. I am honestly sorry that I hurt him the way I did. I never expected to go around the world and fall into the most incredible relationship. I had no intentions of doing so, it just happened.

There was one major problem that I've totally forgotten to mention. C graduated from MSU just a month after we returned from the trip. He had already accepted a job in Wisconsin with an incredible company and was scheduled to start working the beginning of June. I was planning on moving back to my mom's for the summer. It was an 8 hour drive from my mom's to where C was working! 8 hours! How were we going to handle the long distance "thing"? It wasn't going to be just for the summer either, when I went back to MSU it was still 5 hours away.

From there, life hit the fast-forward button (here's a recap to help put this all into perspective)
  • January 15 1999 ~ Left Detroit.
  • February 3 ~ Jack died.
  • February 11 ~ Royal Chitwan National Park.
  • March 4 ~ Kathmandu.
  • April 2 ~ Came home.
  • May 8 ~ Went with C to Wisconsin to see a friend graduate. He asks me to come with him to Wisconsin for the summer.
  • June 1 ~ Moved to Wisconsin.
  • August 1 ~ C asks me to stay in Wisconsin. I agree.
  • August 19 ~ He asks me to marry him. I say yes.
  • February 19 2000 ~ Wedding.
Yup, only 13 months from the start of our Nepal trip to our wedding date. My parents and friends freaked out when I told them we were getting married. I know that everyone thought we were crazy. I know they were concerned that we hadn't been together long, that I wouldn't finish school.
But here we are, 6 years later and going strong. Much stronger than we've ever been. We've had our bumps along the way but we've worked our way through them.

I'll never fully understand what led me to the Nepal trip. There was just always a mysterious intrigue about it. However, I'll never question what happened while I was there.


Kristen said...

I LOVE the wedding pic. You two are way adorable!!

I also loved reading this story. Brought a smile to my face.

Sami said...

Now I may have called you nuts upon occasion, but I don't think I ever called you that in regards to your relationship with C... I remember your wedding fondly - the snowstorm to get there, the rental car place being closed... but it was beautiful and I am so glad that I was able to be there.

KrisAndRod said...

I remember when I met him how happy you seemed. Tho I wasn't at the wedding (did I even get an invite?? j/k), I got to see pics, and knew it was built to last. :)

BTW, you TOTALLY look like your mother in that wedding pic! So cute!

Mandy said...

I'll choose to ignore that comment about looking like my mom (although I know I totally do). The fiasco of a winter wedding in Wisconsin will be told soon...

Anonymous said...

Great story, I could hear it again and again...Though it took me a while to warm up to the idea of you moving to Wisconsin (you were abandoning me after all) :) , I never thought you were nuts for following your heart!


Anonymous said...

And just what is SO wrong about looking like your Mother?
I'll ignore that comment..
Love you honey,

Your Mom

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