Friday, December 2, 2011

our {love} story

A little over 10 years ago I was talked into going to a party with my friend, Katie La.
I was tired and sad over a silly break-up and the last thing I wanted to do was "party".

We ended up at Mark's mom's barber shop (Mark is Wendy's husband) where a few guys were playing poker... maybe dominoes, I can't remember, but it was far from a party.

I sat by myself, doodling with my glitter pens, and not really talking to anyone.

I was miserable and ready to go home when a forever-long blue Cadillac pulled up.
The guy driving was talking to some of the other guys but had not spoke to me, nor had I paid him much attention either- other than noticing that he had a strong "Boyd accent".

A cop came barreling by, lights and sirens on and I muttered, "hmm... wonder what's going on?" In which the guy in the car responded with an off-colored comment about a local officer-- who happened to be my dad.
Before I could rebuttal, Lance was already laughing and giving me a wink.
He knew who I was.

At the time, I was flattered.
I didn't know him from the man in the moon... but he knew me?  And my family tree?
What a compliment!

Now-- in hind sight-- it wasn't a compliment at all.
Lance's mind is like a Rolodex-- constantly cataloging and pulling out random information that he has pocketed at some point or another, to drop your jaw or bring light to a conversation.
That's how he rolls.

Back inside, I went back to coloring.
Lance came and sat beside me, and asked if I always brought gel pens to parties... and then started doodling with me.
He made me laugh the whole night, by making fun of me-- but I did my best to not give him credit for my smiles.
He dressed so preppy and put together-- but wore cowboy boots with his khakis.
He was so funny...
And at this point, I didn't know if I would even talk to him again.
But I laughed my butt off for a few hours and secretly didn't want to leave.
That was the night I met Lance.

Over the next few months, I kept him on my radar.
[Mostly by using Mark as my GPS.]

I would call and chat with him from time to time and I did my best to show up where I thought he would be.  [his girlfriend would typically impede my stalking plans--with a date our something and rarely he'd show up]

Come December, I heard that he and his girlfriend [now our neighbor] had broke up and I did what any stalker would do...
I showed up at his house with the movie Blow and asked if he was busy.

He made me laugh so hard every time I was around him, and I craved seeing him again and again...
I loved his 'accent' but I wasn't sure if I wanted to date him or if I would get another Zane.  (the love of my life at this point, my best friend-- whom I would never date, for the same reason I wouldn't date Amanda or Wendy-- it would just be weird.)

January rolled around and my brother was throwing a huge party at his house for his best friend's 21st birthday.

One of Lance's best friends from HS, Luke, happened to be my cousin.
[Well, that's a lie-- we were family for a minute, through marriage, but we always just called ourselves that because it was easiest!]
I used Luke and Kaleb, occasionally to get dirt on Lance...
What are fake-cousins for?!
This time, I invited them [him] to the party.
He came.

I had a lot to drink that night... 
and Lance was worried about me.

So worried, in fact-- that he drove home and then turned around and came back to check on me because I was not in good shape when he left.
He kissed my drunken face that night, for the first time-- and made sure I was put away and safe before he left.
[I hated that I wasted our first kiss that way.] 

By Valentine's Day, we had seen each other or spoke daily for a few weeks....  off and on for months.
I kind of knew-- this would be the determining factor.
If we made plans for Valentines Day, he thought more of me than a friend.
But if we didn't acknowledge the calendar-- he would be another Zane. (and I guess I was good with that too)

Lunch rolled around and I got a call from Lance.
He wanted to know if I had plans for dinner.
I, in awkward Holly fashion, responded with, "Oh, thank you but I'm not hungry"
In which he reminded me that I might be in another 6 or 7 hours...                                           
Apparently he was right...
On Valentine's day, we had  Our first date.

Lance drove a jeep back then and it was freezing outside, so he took me in his dad's ridiculous Caddy.
After eating, we made it back to a destroyed car.
Someone had broke into the Cadillac, stolen his new coat and wrecked the inside of the car.
Like an idiot, I asked if we had left the car that way!  Lance was mad but he was so calm.

I realized that night, that Lance was not like anyone I had ever dated...
Honestly, not like many men I knew at all.
He was so mild, and calm, and funny.
He was not egotistical at all, nor rude to me.
He was so easy to talk to and be around.
Because of that... I still struggled with the idea of dating him.
The guys in my life who treated me well, ended up being my best friends...
Lance treated me like Josh and Zane.
So it was confusing to me... how could we make this best friend thing work into a relationship?

On February 22, we officially became a couple.
Though I wasn't sure how the logistics would all work out, I was absolutely sure that I didn't him to date anyone else.
Nor did I want to keep coming over and 'making out' with him, if I wasn't his number one girl! ;)

From that point forward, we were together every single day.
[other than the cruise I took right after I graduated HS, Lance and I have not been more than 2 days without seeing each other.]

Lance has never put me high on a pedestal... or gushed about how great I make his life... we didn't have to 'defy the odds' to stay together.... no glitter... no fairy tale... we just aren't that passionate couple that I envisioned for my life.
We just were.
Best friends.

February 22, 2004 he had big plans for our anniversary.

He wanted to go to Fort Worth and celebrate with dinner, but I kept throwing curve balls his way.
I felt fat.
I had nothing to wear.
Couldn't we just stay in?
I was tired.

Against Lance's norm, he stayed persistent.  We were going.  Even if I wore sweat pants, he said.
I dressed and we made our way in.

We were picked up by a horse and carriage and Lance popped the question.
He was so nervous and he thought there would be much more room in that tiny carriage so he was not able to get on one knee.
I don't know that I even answered him... but I was so excited to get that ring on my finger, the answer was obvious.
The carriage dropped us off Del Friscos and we ate dinner and then headed home.

I was just 19 years old (a few months from 20) and in nursing school... and though I was excited to flaunt my new diamond, I was in no hurry to get hitched.

I finished school, got a job, and even got an apartment with Lance but tying the knot still terrified me.

Lance would get very frustrated and to pacify him, I would set a date.
The day would come and the day would go.
Three times to be exact.

I broke off our engagement once...
but got back together a month later.
Not because I realized I was ready for marriage, but I knew I was the only person who could make my best friend stop hurting.

I did not have cold feet... my feet were in ice water.
I told Lance, "it is not you... it is forever.  I hate to commit myself to something as permanent as that."
Lance would lighten the mood by saying, "forever?!  I was only signing a 5 year contract.  We can re-evaluate then."
Though kidding... I wondered if there was a way to make that legit.
It would surely calm my fears!

Our first year living together was rough, to say the least.
I feared failure so bad for us that I would create my own demise.
Lance would say, "I am not going to leave just to make this easy on you... I love you and if you want out, you are going to have to make the tough move yourself."
I think I needed him to prove to me that he would stay.  {through thick in thin.}
And he did.

One day, while sitting at work, it hit me.
I want to be a mom.
I want Lance to be their dad...
I love Lance.
He is my best friend...
what is the big deal?

Forever?... 5 years?... surely I can do this.

So I did.
I set another date.
The final date.

December 2, 2006; We said 'I do'.
I had dreamed about a wedding full of pink, yellow, lime green and deep purple.
Or fall colors, since it is my favorite time of the year.
But once I had made up my mind... we took what we found available.

We had a Christmas wedding.

Lance surprised me, 
by having my original engagement ring morphed into the vintage looking ring it is today.
It was designed for me, and no one else in the world has the same ring.
I love it.

For our reception, we rented a live band.
The Hawkes surprised us both by learning our first dance song, that we intended to play by CD before they began playing.  They rented a xylophone and everything... It was perfect.

Our reception was amazing.  And though there was some crazy-drinking... there was some crazy-dancing... awesome memories... and I think our wedding, overall, was perfect.

It surely doesn't feel like that night was five years ago...
sometimes it feels like yesterday-- other times it feels like a thousand years ago.

We have bought a house...
a few cars...
had 2 boys...
experienced very hard times...
grew in love...
lived life.
We have stood at the top of some glorious mountains...
And threatened to bail all together.

But in the end...
Lance and I have a great marriage, because it all began as a solid friendship.

It surely isn't glitter-- but I guarantee it is beautiful.
I get to share my every breath, every worry, every laugh, and every memory with my best friend in the world.
So here's to signing our next contract.

{Happy 5 year anniversary to my best friend, and the absolute best daddy this world has.}


  1. I took some pictures of Lance's camping anniversary present... I will try and get them up tomorrow.
    As well as the Santa pictures! :)

  2. its 7 in the morn and im already crying!!so sweet!!happy anniversary!!

  3. Holly, this is such a sweet post. I loved reading it and learning more about you. I love your LOVE story! You really do have a precious story, full of ups and downs, life and reality! I also love that you have a million pictures of you and Lance together. I don't have a ton with us, so I need to work on that. Happy Anniversary!

  4. Happy Anniversary!! Such a sweet story.