[me in Sept 2000, Rob performing live with his band in Sept. 2000, and me in June 2000 – I was cute, why wouldn’t he want me?]
When I got back from camp, Rob and I had hoped to hang out, but it never happened. We talked every day and were very honest about things we were going through. I was suffering a lot from feeling as if I’d never have a chance with Rob, and stopped trusting in God. When I ended up falling into sinfulness, I confessed to Christ and I let Rob know what I was involved in (but didn’t tell anyone else what I was going through at that time). Rob gave me godly advice and showed such “brotherly love” to me. He was so encouraging, then proceeded to tell me his woes about his girlfriend. I did my best as usual to help him. Rob started to cry. He didn’t understand how I could always be so wonderful with helping him out when I liked him so much. I said, “It’s because I like you that I am willing to sacrifice my chances with you. I want you to be happy, even if it means pushing my own feelings aside to help you.” This really made him so thankful. He told me he was blessed to have me in his life. Deep down inside I was thinking, “Then why won’t you be with me?” I was glad that he realized I cared that much about him. It was a step.
Rob started the new school year out with being a bit cruel to me. I didn’t understand why. Did I do something wrong? I was confused by the things he would say and do (like avoiding me). We didn’t have any classes at all with each other. I only had the beginning of the day and lunch time in which I’d be able to even see or talk to him.
Rob finally showed me a picture of his girlfriend. The day that school had ended before our summer vacation, his girlfriend went to see Rob’s band Romaine Lettuce play a show with a few other bands (click the link to hear a song Rob had written about me a few months later – he played bass guitar and sang in the song). I bought a ticket and was going to go with my friend, but her mom was going to bring us there and decided last minute that we couldn’t go. Perhaps that was God’s way of protecting me (from seeing them together). In the picture he showed me, his girlfriend had short black hair and wore a lot of lipstick that was a silvery purple. She was shorter than Rob (he’s short as it is) and had football player calves. She was a “punk rawk” girl, as he always put it. I guess everything had been working out really well between them in those past couple weeks. He seemed very happy. She liked more of the type of things he liked. It got very hard for me to be around him at all. Perhaps God was closing a door on our relationship. That couldn’t be true though. I needed to remember God’s promise to me.
To make matters worse I started to look through Rob’s wallet at all his pictures. He had one of his sister, a few of his girlfriend, and some other girl. She had a distinctive nose that squared out from a front view. She looked familiar to me (turns out a guy who liked me in my old school had her sophomore school picture & showed it to me. . .he had a crush on both me and her and I told him I’d steal her boyfriend from her so that he could have her. . but he didn’t like that suggestion).
“Who’s This?” I asked extremely curious.
“That’s my ex,” Rob answered. She was the girl he dated who dumped him a month before I met him.
“Don’t you think your girlfriend would be upset that you have this picture in your wallet?” I said, looking at it. It was a senior picture, so obviously he had seen her recently to have it in his possession. He didn’t really give me an answer but just stared at me.
When I was in my bedroom praying to God and reading His Word, I felt a warmth of love overflow around me. God assured me that Rob was going to be my husband. I had no more doubts, but I was starting to grow impatient. It reminded me of how God told Abram that he’d have many descendants even though he was so old. Abram constantly believed, but you’d see him test God by asking Him to prove it (Genesis 15). For me, I was a bit like Abram (later on he became Abraham), wanting proof that it was for real, when all around me at this point in time it seemed like God was taking Rob away from me. I would still question, “Are you sure, God?” I couldn’t even tell my friends that God promised me that Rob would be my husband one day, because I knew they’d yell about it to everyone and laugh at me, yet for some reason I had absolutely no fear to tell Rob himself about this promise.
I decided to tell Rob how I felt about him. I gently talked with him and let him know that God put him in my life and that even if he didn’t want to acknowledge it, I knew that I was going to be with him one day as his wife. I felt it was a good idea to just let it out. He knew I had a thing for him for the longest time as it was. What else would go wrong other than the fact that he’d continue the way it had been going? He actually reacted to it very well and said, “Okay. We’ll see.” He was willing to see what God would do to prove what I said.
Rob’s band was playing at my hometown’s annual festival (September 23, 2000). Rob was getting down to the music while playing his bass guitar. It was so exciting to listen to. I sat next to his sister and talked a little to her. A girl who graduated in June sat with us and told me she had a crush on Rob. I was a little sad to hear it, and told her I had one on him for nine months at that point. Apparently she had other crushes too and told me some of the guys she liked. She started to flirt with Rob once they were done playing. He let her wear his cross country varsity jacket. I was so jealous (which is why he did it, to make me jealous on purpose). I was sitting there freezing and couldn’t believe he gave another girl his jacket when I knew him far better than most people knew him. I took some photos of their band. It made me so happy to have photos of Rob (since the only one I had of him I stole from a friend’s photo album, though she told me she didn’t want it so I could keep it).
Rob’s bass case had a load of stickers all over it. As I was looking at it, he was placing a new sticker on it. It said You Can’t Have Me.
I commented to him, “I can’t?”
“No. You can’t,” was his response, as he gave me an annoyed expression with a grin behind it.
His remark broke my heart. I decided to leave him alone for the rest of the festival. I grabbed my closest school friend so we could buy some sushi to eat together. Sushi always seemed to be good as a cure when feeling down in the dumps (really though, it isn’t a cure at all). Afterwards I walked home.
A few days later, Rob told me that things were going downhill with his girlfriend. I started to get excited, but still a little sad, since this was the girl that he said was a “perfect love”. To me they hardly had a relationship. Suddenly he started to flirt with me again. He couldn’t get enough of being around me. We would talk online with each other sometimes until 2AM.
On the night of October 5, 2000, Rob and I were talking online as usual. He was telling me how horrible of a time he was having with his girlfriend and that they were fighting while instant messaging one another. He started to show me their conversation (he did this regularly with me, though I often feared he did the same with our conversations, but that didn’t happen). It was about an hour long of sending me things as I was trying to help ease his heart a bit. He was being very mean to her though. Right before midnight he broke the relationship off with her.
It was at that moment that he said, “Want to be my girlfriend?”
I pushed my seat back fast and my jaw opened. First off, he had just broke things off with his girlfriend. I never wanted to a be a rebound the first time around, and this was even more of one, even if he did make it seem like he broke up with her to be with me. Second off, his heart was all in shambles with confusion and I was scared. Third off, I was thrilled. I said to myself, “I better take this opportunity while it’s still knocking at my door.” I did say a quick prayer and thanked God wondering what I should do, and I felt a tug saying “Go! Here it is!” I was thinking, “But God, this doesn’t seem like a fairytale way of being swept off my feet, even if it is the relationship I’ve been waiting for!” “Go! This is real, not a fairytale.”
“Yes,” I responded even though I was so upset that he was asking me through the Internet rather than in person. I was blushing. Maybe he was pulling my leg. I was scared he’d say, “just kidding!” but that didn’t happen. I went to bed right afterwards, hoping that it was not a dream. I woke up to find it was reality. Rob was my boyfriend. God answered my prayers.
“But for you, O Lord do I wait; it is you, O Lord my God, who will answer.” –Psalm 38:15
[photo used with permission of the girl who is in it (you rock, lady – thank you!) – She was wearing Rob’s varsity jacket when I wanted to wear it!]