This post is a couple weeks overdue. Simply put, I've been procrastinating it. Because, well, it's hard to find the words to say how I feel about these two. This isn't just any bride-to-be, this is MY SISTER. And the boy who swept her off of her feet. And the words just don't come easily to tell you how happy that makes me. So I guess I'll just start from the beginning.
Last summer Heather and I both made separate trips to California in June (read about our trip here!). We went for fun with friends, and Heather went to learn more about Royal Family Kids Camps (a national network of camps for children of abuse, abandonment, and neglect). After her trip she told me breifly about how great California was and about everything she'd learned while she was there. I assumed that was the end of the story... I was wrong!
A couple weeks later Heather and I were texting, and I joked about me being crazy, to which she replied, "I think I might be the crazy one!" I asked what she meant, and she told me we needed a phone date soon, because it would take awhile to explain... queue the curiousity! We made a phone date for the next evening when we both had time for a long chat, and I skipped all the small talk and told her to just spit it out. Her reply? "...I didn't tell you everything about California... I met a boy there...." Heart. Stopped!! This was my beautiful big sister. The girl who has guarded her heart and chased Jesus, waiting for not just any man, but for the right man. So if she was on the other line of that phone, telling me she met a boy, this was a BIG deal. I couldn't get the details out of her fast enough!
Before they had even met, Heather was sitting on a bench near the camp in California, overlooking the water. There was a guy leaning against the far end of the bench, also looking out over the water. That guy had a friend standing a little further away, and for some reason, his friend felt compelled to take a picture of the two of them. A few moments later, Heather scooted over on the bench and offered the tall guy with a charming smile a seat on next to her. That guy's friend saw this, and took another picture. He said that as he watched what happened, he felt like this girl had just moved over to make room for his friend, not just on the bench, but in her life.
WHAT? Who has stories like that about the first moment they met? And who has pictures? These two, that's who! Because even from that first moment, there was something special about these two. After they returned home from California they spent hours on the phone talking. Never in my entire life have I seen my sister so enamored and full of joy. Dan had came into her life, swept her off her feet, and turned her whole world right side up. Less than two weeks later, Dan, who lived half way across the country in Wisconsin, was driving to Montana to meet our family. I made a special trip home because there was no way I would miss the first chance at meeting this mystery man who had stolen my sisters heart. By one minute in, Dan had won me over too. I don't even think it took that long, actually. Once I arrived at my sisters house and saw the way she was smiling, I knew too. This was the real deal.
Less than two months after that Heather flew out to Wisconsin to meet Dan's family. By this point, we all knew. These two had spent their entire lives waiting for the right person, and now that they'd found each other, there was no more waiting. Heather came home from that trip with a shiny new ring on her left hand, and my heart exploded with joy! A love like this is so, so rare. And it has been the most amazing thing to witness it from the beginning. These two have bigger hearts than anyone I've ever known, and I can't wait to see what the future has in store for them! Granted, I'm a little bit sad that come this summer, my big sister will be moving half way across the country, but I know without a doubt that this is just the beginning of their journey. There are BIG things in store for these two, both in their marriage and in their lives!
I'm so beyond excited to put down my camera and stand by Heather's side in May as she officially becomes Mrs. St. Pierre!
Heather & Dan, this all feels so inadequate. There aren't enough words to say how happy I am for the two of you, and how excited I am to watch your future unfold. So I'll just leave it at this: 1. I love you! & 2. Marriage is AWESOME!!!