I’ve been prayin’ for the day when
we’d be walkin’ side by side.
Love was in hiding ’til Heaven’s timing
paved the way for you and I –
now I can’t believe you’re mine…
“THAT guy? I’ve never seen that guy before.” I still remember sitting in the middle of a dorm room floor in Pensacola, Florida, with a flush-faced Tyler and an open yearbook. There was “a guy.” A GUY? In the life of one of my bestest friends – and I didn’t even know who he was. She worked at the Rec Center at school, and he’d come by her desk and talk to her. He and his friends would knot up the lines on the rock climbing walls so that she would have to come and untie them.
Apparently a lot had changed over the summer we’d spent apart between freshman and sophomore years. Tyler had stayed in Florida to work while I went home to Washington. And Logan (that was his name) had stayed on campus, too. When I got back to campus, Tyler told me about the long Saturdays of conversation, the talent show where Logan’s eyes met hers during a guitar solo… (arguably, THAT was The Beginning).
The Beginning of The End.
Because my Ty-friend was in love – absolutely head-over-heels. If you know what I mean, ladies and gentlemen, she was gone. They prayed a lot and took it slow, especially at first.
But when they finally went *out* the first time… it was magic (so I hear). When they were together, it was like there were a million and two private jokes going on simultaneously. He made her smile so big, I knew his sense of humor was a keeper, because Tyler is the kind of girl who needs to smile every day, all day long. Joy just radiates from her face, and I was glad to see her so happy.
I’ve been waiting all my life
just to find someone like you.
Love, you caught me surprise…
one look and I just knew it had to be you…
That first date was just one of many.
Many, many, many. Study dates, work “dates,” breakfast/dinner/lunch dates, church dates… with those kids, anything could be turned into a date. They walked together to class, they did devotions together, they took the time to care about each other like few couples I’ve seen before.
Oh, and that’s Bre – her roomie from those days. We were all super good friends, and that meant many post-lights-out conversations involving Logan. Not just Logan, but assessing Logan’s every movement and assigning it intentions and analyzing and (subconsciously) planning the rest of Tyler’s life, basically.
Not gonna lie, sometimes we literally had to steal Tyler and make a Dunkin run sans Logan, because we all needed some girlish laughter in our lives.
Dating in college is hard. Just ask anyone who’s done it. Tyler and Logan were exceptionally strong people – they balanced each other, school, jobs, and all the pressures that accompany those things. They saw each other through a LOT.
I’ve heard love stories but this one is for me
it’s perfect, darlin’ did you know
right from the start, you stole my heart
and you won’t ever let it go…
But if college dating is hard… long-distance college dating is harder.
The issue here was that Logan was a year ahead of Ty in school. Come May 2014, Logan graduated (cue: first hug, which I got to witness… just saying, that kinda makes me special or something..)
That summer brought so many changes in all of our lives. Logan and Tyler experienced the joys of dating long-distance for the first time, and they’re the biggest troopers at it that I’ve ever met.
But they’ll be the first to tell you that long distance dating is hard – it takes WORK, plain and simple. But the inspiring thing is that they did it. They pulled it off through the grace and strength of Jesus, and the result is a beautiful story of God’s provision and kindness.
They visited once or twice, and I talked to Tyler a few times during the summer. Funny thing about our relationship: during the school year, we were practically inseparable. Our schedules were so different in the summers that we didn’t get to talk much or see each other at all, though… but we always picked RIGHT back up where we left off every fall. But I knew the relationship was going good when Logan went to Southern California to meet the family.
I grew up with Tyler’s family for five years in the early 2000s and I LOVE their family.
But for Logan, it must’ve been super intimidating… she has four brothers, guys. Four! And they’re not all small tykes, either. But brave Logan met the family and hit it off SO well – it’s kind of obvious what happened, but I’m not there yet.
Funny story – Logan and I didn’t really get along at first. If you know me, you know my sharp, sarcastic sense of humor. For those of us in the world who are outgoing and constantly witty, it’s hard to understand people who don’t get our sense of humor. Like, we’re funny, okay? That couldn’t possibly have offended you!! (that’s something I’m working on, so, yeah… bear with me!)
Logan’s much gentler – definitely funny, but not my kind of funny. Honestly, at first, we used to barely tolerate each other. Add to that the fact that he was STEALING MY BEST FRIEND, and you had a leeetle bit of tension.
But soon… I realized what a good guy Logan was. God is really very evident in His life. He cares deeply about other people, he’s always ready for an adventure.
He’s, basically… perfect for Tyler. And once I got over my funk about being misunderstood by my best friend’s boyfriend (I was an immature 19-year-old, okay?), I started actually liking this idea. What.
So I became a huge fan. By the time of his graduation, I knew this was definitely a keeper-situation. I knew Tyler knew that, too, and I was pretty sure Logan knew, as well.
Bre and I geared up for a wedding sometime in the near future.
Anyway, back to that summer. It was rough for them. But with muchmuchmuch Jesus, they grew closer despite the miles. I even talked with Logan once or twice… some Facebook chats that ended up being mostly about Tyler and about the future.
The thing that hit me most about Logan that summer was his caring heart – just like Tyler’s. I was in the grocery store when he found out about my recent breakup, and he called me right then and there. “Hey, are you okay?” He started talking Jesus and encouragement – gee, whiz, Logan. Way to make me cry on the boxed brownie mix aisle!
Off and on during the summer, Logan texted me pictures of… rings.
“Would she like this?”
“What about this?”
“Is this too small?”
He finally picked one, and then texted me SO full of excitement I’m pretty sure it was all in capitals.
GOING TO CALIFORNIA TO SURPRISE TYLER AND PROPOSE TO HER!
Tyler is the hardest girl EVER to surprise. The first time he asked her out, he gave a handwritten letter to one of her friends and had her slip it into Tyler’s dorm room when she was in class.
A few hours before he arrived, she noticed her family acting slightly weird.
But she didn’t know precisely why…
Somehow, Trevor convinced her to head to the beach on Coronado with him around sunset.
Long story short…
1) Logan was there.
2) he sang her a song.
3) the sun went down in a perfect midsummer California sunset.
4) she left Coronado Beach with a ring on her finger.
I remember the text I got from her afterwards… pretty sure it, too, was full of capital letters. And smiley faces to beat the band – and hearts and, yeah. You get the idea!
My childhood friend was GETTING MARRIED!
No one else could love me like you do
eternally I’m yours, you know it’s true
nothing in this world could ever
change the meaning of forever me and you…
And thus began the long-distance engagement.
And you thought dating was hard.
Tyler and I both returned to Florida to finish up our Senior year of school. And Logan went to Missouri.
Once again, by the faithfulness of a loving God, they did it.
I remember being surprised that she could talk to him on the phone every.single.night. What on EARTH did people who were engaged talk about? Like… “hi, my day was good, bye…” They knew better, of course, and their relationship grew over the miles.
Tyler WAS hard to surprise, though.
Once, his church’s high school group took a trip down to our college to check it out – Logan tagged along. I knew about it, and so did his brother. Tyler and I had the same class at 4:00 in the afternoon (is there anything worse than dissecting music with a professor who struggles with English THAT late in the afternoon?!).
We walked out of the building and practically into Logan – I don’t even think she said a word. She just smiled SUPER big and (I think she cried) kinda hugged him for an eternity.
He came back again for our Senior piano recitals – which happened to be on the same weekend!! I’ve never seen him smile bigger or prouder (except on his wedding day).
Christmas break, visits to family, and back to school.
I remember when Bre and I had to take Tyler aside and get her donuts to try and take her mind off the struggles – she worked SO hard during that last semester, I barely saw her. But we managed to have lots of fun – salt air and tans, iced coffee (both decaf and NOT), late nights… I was so blessed by her friendship and Godly example while in school.
Ty, girl, I love you… just thought I should mention that part.
Graduation, and Logan was there to celebrate with her. We all smiled and hugged and laughed SO much, I’ll never forget the day I graduated.
Later that week, since all our families were in Pensacola still, we met up on the boardwalk on a humid night – eating ice cream and dangling our feet into the water… not ready to let go of our studenthood and head off into the big, scary adult world.
We watched the lights dance over the water from the pier and we knew we’d see each other again… the wedding date wasn’t set, but we felt like we could hold on to just a little more carefree if we knew this wasn’t the end.
It sure wasn’t, but it was the end of late nights together, of endless, girlish giggles. It was the end of lots of stress and time spent studying, for sure – but the end of a certain kind of together-friendship that you can only find in college and in certain places.
The end of dying from lack of sleep on the floor of a practice room – the end of sharing looks at weird remarks by our music professors – the end of those nights we talked about Jesus to take our minds off the stress – the end of being chapel buddies (for lyyffe) and wowthisisactuallymakingmesadsoI’mstoppingrightnow.
Tyler is a girl who loves adventures – and there were SO many adventures ahead. I couldn’t help but be excited despite the bittersweet.
The wedding date was set. Bre and Tara and I had our champagne-colored (whatever the heck THAT color is, anyway!) bridesmaid dresses picked out and packed up. Tyler and Logan were actually getting MARRIED!
Oh yeah, and in my defense – I was a bridesmaid for this wedding, so I didn’t get my official title of photographer (for once!). I LOVE being in weddings – standing up and watching the two people you (obviously) love and care about promising each other forever. Like… I can’t even!
Southern California is the BEST place for a backyard wedding ever – and Tyler and her mom are DIY-princesses. They covered every last detail to absolute casual-gorgeous perfection.
August 2 dawned slightly cloudy, but we all knew that coastal fog would burn off just in time for the wedding itself. And it did… gosh, I’m so in love with California sunshine!
It was perfect.
We had the best of times as bridesmaids, let me tell you. Spreading our stuff all over the guest room wasn’t the extent of our adventures by a long shot. But we didn’t make too much trouble – not even at our extremely mild bachelorette party. Promise.
|Logan’s bro and his adorable wifey =)
|I LOVE seeing my work in print. It makes my little heart SO HAPPY. If you missed that post, it’s Ty + Logan’s engagement pics.|
Hashtag best bridesmaid team ever. Girls, we rock.
I honestly don’t know WHAT happened here… but then again, it was probably like the rest of that lovely day – full of laughter and joy and “whaaat?”
Logan’s nephew is just TOO MUCH. Guys. I’m serious.
I’ve been waiting all my life
just to find someone like you –
Love, you caught me surprise
one look and I just knew it had to be you
oh, oh, it had to be you
Tyler and Logan – there are no words. I mean… there are probably about 6500, but I’ll spare you. Just remember that you mean so much to me and I’m so grateful Jesus brought you BOTH into my life. Never stop being awesome – I can’t wait to see you again!!
lyrics in this post >> Had to Be You, Dara Maclean
^^ their favorite love song *insert heart eyes*