The Lees Photography, California
If you missed the first two parts of our story, check them out below.
When I first started writing out our story, I didn’t include this part.
I feel like our story could be a Disney movie. The Prince sees me from afar. Stays my friend till I’m ready. Then pursues me till the proposal and continues to take me on regular date nights into and after marriage.
However, every fairytale has a pivot point. A moment of tension which leads to clarity. It didn’t seem fair to leave this part out.
It’s the question every girl wonders and every married woman knows, “How do you know you’ve found the one.”
After dating Blake for two years, I was beginning to wonder that as well.
It was the summer before my Senior year and it was time to pick a summer internship.
I had looked at a few different internship options before committing to the Denver Urban Semester and Dry Bones. (Two fantastic organizations by the way!) At first, I wasn’t sure where I wanted to go, but the more I thought about it, I realized this would give me the chance to check some things off my bucket list.
#1. Live on my own.
#2. Live in the city.
It would also give me the chance to experience a new place and meet new people. Once I convinced them it was necessary for me to bring my car to Denver, I was in.
Can I be honest with you? Blake and I were in a comfortable rhythm. We loved (and still love!) spending time with one another and working together.
However, at school, some well-intentioned classmates had started to make comments about our relationship “Oh. Are you sure about Blake? I saw you marrying a pastor.”
Yes. I’m not making that up. It brought about some insecurities and questions in me that Blake and I had to work through. I was a youth ministry major. (And I’m still so glad I was!) Were they right?
To Blake, it was a non-issue. He loved me and supported me no matter my career, but I still had questions.
The final benefit of going to Denver for the Summer was that it would be the first time Blake and I were apart for more than two weeks in over 5 years. If there was something else I was supposed to find. Denver would help me figure it out.
Blake knew this would be our first real time apart, but he took it all in stride and offered to help me drive my car out there.
It was such a fun road trip! An adventure and there was nobody else I wanted by my side. 🙂 Our good-bye was so hard! It was only 10 weeks, but it was also 10 whole weeks!
Exploring Pikes Peak together. 🙂 Did you know that’s where Big Foot lives?
One of the many things I love about Blake is how thoughtful he is.
For two years now, Blake had gotten me flowers every month on our month-a-versary. One flower for one month. Two flowers for two months. Three flowers for three months…
We had arrived in Denver just a day ago, but Blake’s flight was already just a few hours away. Blake started acting weird. We were driving somewhere, but it wasn’t the airport and I wasn’t sure he even knew where he was going.
That’s when he pulled up to a flower shop. Just as the florist was flipping the closed sign. Seeing us scrambling out of the car. She let us in.
I still wasn’t 100% sure what we were doing here, but after a few minutes we had our first official love fern and I was in charge of it. Yep. I’m serious. Blake couldn’t give me flowers each month in person, but now I had something better. 🙂
I dropped Blake off at the airport. Quickly whipping any trace of tears from my face. I’m a Bradley. I’m strong and this would be an adventure. I would see him in 6 weeks when he came out to visit me. My heart ached, but I was also excited.
Right before Blake left and the only proof our love fern existed.
These first weeks apart were the hardest. Just a couple days in this new city, surrounded by strangers, I got a call that the golf team, the team I was captain of and loved was being cut. I was devastated and I felt alone.
Away from my friends. Away from my family and away from Blake I felt lead by God to the place that I was, but I wasn’t sure what he was trying to teach me.
I wasn’t sure about a lot of things, but I loved the adventure. Living with the awesome women in the house, we couldn’t get enough of the city, the local restaurants and weekend festivals. The hiking? There wasn’t enough time to fit it all in!
It was exciting and I was staying pretty busy. I was working with our Street Friends and the high school students who visited week by week. We were doing Turf Tours and I was submerging myself in the Denver Urban Semester material.
I was learning a lot and pushed myself to work harder than anyone else. While I appreciated the other guys on the team, I couldn’t help compare them to Blake.
Was that the same as “knowing” Blake was “the one?”
It was Friday afternoon. I had just finished up work and I was giddy with excitement. I couldn’t wait to see Blake. I remember circling the airport when I finally got the call from Blake. He was walking out now!
That’s when it happened.
I vividly remember him walking out of the airport doors. He looked around for just a second before seeing my car, locking eyes with me and jogging over to the car to meet me.
People say when you know you know. I’d always found that to be a little weird, but when I saw him for the first time in 6 weeks, all the tension left my body. I hadn’t even realized how stressed I’d been!
Blake stayed out in Denver with me for a whole week. He worked side by side with me at my internship and in that experience I realized there was nobody else I rather work alongside. I kept it to myself, but any doubts I’d had about my future were gone.
I KNEW he was the one.
Much Love Friend,
PS. I case you’re curious, I totally killed the love fern. It never had a chance. 😂 Even today, Blake is in charge of the garden. Thanks babe!
Team Watson For Life: Epic Stories & Adventures
Our Story: The Proposal That Almost Didn’t Happen!
July 5, 2019