Alex and I almost missed each other that spring. In fact, if I wouldn’t have paid attention to those three dreams we wouldn’t be together today.
It was the spring of 2006 and I was deciding where to spend the summer after my 4th year of university. The options were:
1. Keats Camp (a bible camp on Vancouver Island, Canada)
2. Tour with Beautiful Unique Girl as the main speaker and co-leader with my bestie.
I had a lot of trouble deciding because I’d been working at camps for the past 6 summers and the thought of not going killed me. As much as the idea of a 6 week speaking tour was appealing, I wasn’t sure about all that time cramped up in a van, driving across Canada.
In the weeks before making the decision I had three dreams.
Dream #1: I was driving my mom’s Honda Accord (that car is smart!) to camp. On the way I stopped to steal some tomatoes from some dudes garden and while I was thieving, a tree fell on my car. Serves me right, hey? I couldn’t go the rest of the way cuz my car was crushed.
Dream #2: I stole a burgundy van with wood grain (who steals a van? and one with woodgrain, really?) and was trying to get away fast. But I ended up on this race track and ended up going round and round in circles, getting nowhere.
Dream #3: My family was driving to camp in a huge Greyhound bus and my brother took a corner way to fast and the whole bus flipped over. So we didn’t get where we were going.
At the time I was in the habit of writing down my dreams (I really believe God speaks through our dreams), and as I looked back on all of them, there was a theme.
Vehicles not getting where they were supposed to go.
Often vehicles in dreams represent life direction. At the time I was leaning towards going to camp and in the dreams I realized every time I tried to get to camp, something stopped me from going.
So based on three dreams I turned down the job at camp.
What I found out a few days later was my ex-boyfriend and his new girlfriend were going to be working at that very camp, and I had no idea. It was a very messy relationship which ended horribly and being there with them would’ve been torture.
And if I’d gone, I’d never have met Alex.
Our tour started in Winnipeg and ended in Vancouver with dozens of stops in between. On May 27th we ended up in the dingy town of Brooks, Alberta. It’s an oil town with not much else to it. We got to the church and started unloading the van. As usual, the youth pastor and some volunteers were there to help us. I was pretty focused that day and didn’t even say hi to our help, two guys in their early 20’s. I made an effort to thank the youth pastor and his wife but didn’t really pay attention to anyone else.
After setting up for the event I noticed the two guys who helped us were still hanging around. So I decided I should be nice and asked my classic touring question: “What do you do for fun here in Brooks, Alberta (insert random town name)?” Right away one of the guys (Alex) mentioned he liked wake boarding. My ears perked up. The heavens opened and the angelic choir began to sing!
Wake boarding?!? Really? Maybe this guy was kinda cute after all.
I’ll admit I’m a total sucker for guys who do board sports.
We began to talk and maybe there was a bit of flirting going on, some smiles a little bigger than usual. And maybe Alex demonstrated how he face-planted on his wake board and embarassingly threw himself on the floor at my feet. And maybe I spent the rest of the night thinking about him and wanting the girls to just leave so I could talk to him more, when he came to help us clean up.
After the event, we all went to one of the youth leaders houses for a bonfire and I’ll never forget when Alex walked into the room and declared, “Guys, I spilled coffee all over my crotch”. I swooned. No really, I found his lack of embarrassment totally attractive. This guy was the real deal.
When we first met Alex thought I was an “ice princess”. Those were his words exactly. I guess ignoring him for the first few hours of our interaction didn’t give him the warmest impression. But after the bonfire, things started to heat up. (oh my, that’s just bad).
During the bonfire a couple of the leaders got out their guitars and we had a spontaneous worship session. The whole time I was distracted, glancing over at Alex to see if he was really in love with Jesus. Was he truly worshiping, or totally distracted?…like I was…oops! After a few peeks it was obvious to me that the guy was genuine and my attraction increased.
The next day we attended their Sunday morning church service and when our team was getting ready to leave, Alex came over to help us load up our suitcases. A few of the leaders wanted to meet up with us in Calgary the next night and I casually asked Alex if he’d be coming. He said he wasn’t sure.
And then it happened.
I made my BIG move.
If I wouldn’t have been for these three words, we wouldn’t be together today. Are you ready for em?
I said, “You should come!”
Big Cheesy Smile. Bat Of The Eyelashes. Wink, Wink. Nudge, Nudge.
He later told me that if I wouldn’t have said those three words, he wouldn’t have come.
The next night in Calgary we met up to go to a worship service and decided to go out for appetizers after. Alex sat beside me and we talked non-stop for the whole time. There were about 6 other people at the table but we ignored them completely! At the end of our meal I told him about a book I was reading and he said he wanted to write down the title. He asked if anyone had a pen and paper. My heart beat faster.
After writing down the title of the book he casually said he should probably get my number as well. Just in case. What a sneaky guy.
We all said goodbye in the restaurant parking lot and after getting into the van with the girls, I screamed!!!
We spent the rest of the night going over every detail of the weekend, replaying the moments and analyzing them to death. I said I hoped he’d call the next day. My bff Amanda said she hoped he’d wait at least two days.
Three days later he called.
We spent the next ten weeks talking on the phone almost daily. He had flowers sent to my house. He even mailed me a letter he’d typed on an old type-writer and tea stained! Ya, for those of you who know Alex, it’s hard to believe. But it true.
He tea stained a letter.
And after 10 weeks of phoning, texting, emailing and tea staining, he flew to Winnipeg to meet my family and make it official.
I picked Alex up from the airport and straight away whisked him off to the cabin (my favorite place on earth) and introduced him to my whole family! He was like deer in headlights meeting my parents, brother and sister, grandparents, aunts and uncles – all in one shot. It sounds kinda mean but I wanted to see what the guy was made of. I’m worth it, right?
We had a great time at the lake wake boarding, playing games, taking long walks at night, star gazing with stars in our eyes.He asked me to be his girlfriend and we shared our first kiss on the ridge overlooking a valley of evergreens. It was perfect.
Less than a year later on July 7, 2007 (07/07/07) Alex proposed on that very same ridge, about 3 months after moving to Winnipeg.
It was so special that it happened on 07/07/07 because the number seven is a significant spiritual number. It’s the number of fulfillment and that day God fulfilled one of my deepest longings and greatest dreams – to marry a man after His own heart.
Six months later, on January 10, 2008 we were married in Holguin, Cuba! 43 of our closest friends and family celebrated with us beside the turquoise waters. All four sets of our grandparents were there as well as many other dear friends and family.
Being married to Alex has been an amazing adventure. We’ve travelled, bought and renovated THREE houses, started a business, and created two pretty amazing little people. It hasn’t always been easy, but I truly can’t wait to see what else the Lord has in store for us.