That night and the next several nights were filled with so much anguish!
There were many late night and into the morning phone calls between the two of us filled mostly with me crying and desperate for Stephen’s love.
I do remember going to a movie at some point with the previously mentioned Katie. I just felt so awkward and lost too. Prior to Marissa basically forcing me to socialize, I still was pretty much a loner and didn’t have many friends at the church. All these new friends I’d made over the past few months were technically Stephen’s friends. So I didn’t know if I should continue hanging out with them like normal or what.
Another issue was that Marissa and I had started helping out at the merch table for Eleventh Hour concerts. About a week into our breakup the band had another show. Marissa and I worked the table like usual. I remember that Dave and Ashley came to that show. Stephen kept sitting by me and still being around me and stuff during it.
The following week the youth staff went to a Youth Specialties conference. Stephen sat by me in the van too even though there were plenty of other seats. He also sat by me in the conference and held my hand and in the van on the way home too.
So between the late night phone calls, sitting by me and hand holding I was thoroughly confused. I mean obviously we weren’t really “broken up”. After the youth conference I even remember talking to Ashley because she was curious as to what was going on between us. She was like, “I thought you guys were broken up?” and I told her that I really didn’t know.
The “break up” or whatever it was lasted about two weeks. At which point we decided that we thought the books advice on breaking up was dumb and we weren’t going to listen to it. Stephen later said that he knew at this point that by dating again that it was “for keeps” and that he doing it with the intention of marrying me.
I wish I could stay that we learned our lesson in the physical department, but we did not. Not one bit. We continued to struggle with it, unfortunately.
Another hurdle came that at our youth group’s summer camp. I don’t think we’ve ever fought so much as we did that week. Part of the problem was that we went from being able to spend however much time we wanted with eachother to no time at all. I felt like I didn’t even exist to Stephen because he was so wrapped up in working on the music for camp.
And then about halfway into the camp I got one of the worst migrane headaches of my life because of a stupid strobe light in the meeting hall. No one took me seriously about just how bad it was. I was told that there were parents there at the camp who’s kids gave them worse migranes than I could ever experience just by the stuff their kids did.
Eventually I somehow managed to convince some people how bad it was and a few people, including Stephen, took me to the hospital so I could get a shot and medication for the pain. Well that was a mistake. I should have told the on call physician the medicine that I regularly took for my migraines and just had them give me that. Because what they gave me was Demerol and Vicodine which basically turned into a drooling, exhausted zombie. Not exactly great camp counselor material. And of course that brought even more ridicule with it. Looking back I wish I had just gone home the night the migrane hit.
That fall I met most of Stephen’s family at Thanksgiving. They were all so nice and so much fun. I immediately felt welcomed by them.
I think Stephen resigned as the high school worship leader at some point during this time period so that he could get a full time job doing something that was more closely related to his degree. I also know that the band ceased being “Eleventh Hour” and changed the name to “Threefold7” and they got a new drummer because Jeremy quit.
The new drummer, Paul, and his wife, Brooke, quickly became some of our best friends. They also became some of the best accountability partners a couple could as for. They were constantly on us about what we were doing, where we were going, how long we would be alone, etc. More than that though we just really seemed to connect with them. Some of the best conversations either of us has ever had was with those two. I guess we all just have certain people we have very good friend-chemistry with and definitely had it.
By the time our anniversary came around in February I was pretty much expecting to be engaged. So when that didn’t happen I was very disappointed. We went on a date that night and it was fun and perfect, but I was still a little let down when things didn’t go in that direction.
I feel so silly for how disappointed I was now, though because it was literally around the corner.