Why My Ring is a Pearl

[disclaim]This article was put on my old blog on January 16, 2011. I wanted to share with you because it is the anniversary of the day my husband and I got engaged. [/disclaim]

My ring is a pearl. There’s a reason behind it. Let me explain:

Jenny’s Pearl Necklace

by: Author Unknown, Source Unknown

Jenny was a bright-eyed, cheerful young girl. One day when she and her mother were checking out at the grocery store, Jenny saw a circle of glistening white plastic pearls in a pink foil box. They were priced at $2.50. She begged her mom to buy them, they were so beautiful!

Her mother looked back into the pleading blue eyes of her little girl and said.”If you really want them, I’ll think of some extra chores for you and you can save enough money to buy them yourself. Your birthday’s only a week away and you might get another dollar from Grandma.” Jenny saved up and at last she had enough money to buy the necklace.

Jenny loved her pearls. They made her feel grown up. She wore them everywhere–Sunday school, kindergarten, and all around the house. She treasured her pearls. But since they were just beads, eventually they got pretty worn down. Soon they were nothing but white beads on a worn string.

Jenny had a very loving daddy and every night when she was ready for bed, he would stop whatever he was doing and come upstairs to read her a story. One night when he finished the story, he asked Jenny, “Do you love me?”

“Oh yes, Daddy. You know that I love you.”

“Then may I have your pearls?”

“Oh, Daddy, not my pearls. These are my favorite, I love these pearls.”

“That’s okay, honey. Daddy loves you. Good night.” And he brushed her cheek with a kiss.

About a week later, after the story time, Jenny’s daddy asked again, “Do you love me?”

“Daddy, you know I love you.”

“Then will you give me your pearls?”

“Oh, Daddy, not my pearls. But you can have my baby doll. The brand new one I got for my birthday. She is so beautiful and you can have the yellow blanket that matches her sleeper, if you want. But I love my pearls. You cant have my pearls.”

“That’s okay, Honey. Sleep well. Daddy loves you.” And as always, he brushed her cheek with a gentle kiss.

This went on for quite a while, always with the same result, until one night as Jenny’s Daddy came to read her a story, Jenny was sitting on her bed. As he came close, he noticed her chin was trembling and one silent tear rolled down her cheek.

“What is it, Jenny? What’s the matter?”

Jenny didn’t say anything but lifted her little hand up to her daddy. When she opened it, there was her little pearl necklace. With a little quiver, she finally said, “Here, Daddy. It’s for you. I know you love me, and you wouldn’t ask for my pearls unless you needed them.”

With tears gathering in his own eyes, Jenny’s kind daddy reached out with one hand to take the prized necklace. He quietly left and when he came back, the other hand held a blue velvet case. He handed it to Jenny and told her, “Thank you for giving me your most prized possession. I know you even saved up for it all by yourself. Now, I have this for you also.”

As Jenny pried open the blue velvet box, so nice a thing itself she’d never known, the glistening white sheen of the rich genuine pearls struck her teary eyes.

Her daddy hugged her tight and said, “I needed to know you would take care of these. I needed to know you would keep these pearls nice. And now I know.”

I remember when I was trying to make things work out with my ex, I called my mom one night and I said, “mom, what if this is like that stupid pearl story? What if God’s just waiting to bless me when I’m ready to let go? But what if I don’t WANT to let go? I already know what this is like, and I am okay with fake pearls. I don’t want to let go.

And then when he left, I realized just how worn and chipped those plastic beads were. And how much I would have been missing.

And now… Now I have my real pearl.

My Most Favorite New Year’s Eve Ever. :c)

[disclaim]This article was put on my old blog on January 16, 2011. I wanted to share with you because today is the anniversary of the day my husband and I got engaged. [/disclaim]

So the day before New Years Eve, Ranger calls me up and asks if I have plans for the day. I say no, I was sort of leaving that up to him. And he says good, we’re going to go play in the snow. And wont give me more information.

Later on, he slips that we’re going for a sleigh ride. I think it was on purpose because he knows I strongly dislike secrets. Or surprises. (I need time to prepare. I know, it’s kinda silly, but it’s true). The problem is, he’s still hiding something and I can tell. So I start wondering. Of course, it’s only natural. He slipped a few weeks earlier that he already had the ring (and that one probably WAS an accident, because I asked him while he was tired). I was afraid to hope, though. He’d tricked me once before. So I keep my cool and pretend I’m clueless, in case I’m wrong. Good plan, right?

The only information I can get out of him is that his brother and sister-in-law are coming with us. That’s cool. But it’s also another thing that makes me wonder. His brother and he are super close.

So the next day, we get all ready for the sleigh ride, get lost on the way, and finally make it there. The sleigh ride is great, except Ranger gets called in to work. Now how do you explain that you really need the day off because you are doing something “important” and you cant explain what’s so important, because its a secret and the girl who cant know is sitting right next to you? So he goes to work. Poor thing. But I’m probably wrong, right? And since he got called in to work, it probably wont happen today anyway…

So he takes me to his dad’s house to wait, and we wait. For a while his brother hangs around and visits, but eventually goes home. His dad asks him what his plans are for that evening, and he says “well, we’ll still do that thing, but otherwise, we dont know yet.” And I take note. Vague hints are good… right?

Great visit, but we’re both kind of distracted (probably about the same thing which neither one of us can talk about. Me for my pride in case I’m wrong, and he for the sake of his son… if I’m right, anyway). I get the feeling that his dad’s trying to keep the day special. So I start to hope again. Ranger said I could go home, if I wanted. But I actually really like his dad, and I knew I’d be twice as antsy at home. So I didn’t ask to be taken home.

Ranger FINALLY gets off work, and says we have dinner plans with his brother. Well, that explains the “thing”… But if there wasn’t some news, why would his brother be so vague? And now I can tell that everyone’s a little excited. And Ranger looks a little nervous, but honestly, that could have been rationalized away because he felt bad for having to work in the middle of our date. And his dad’s trying to help him. I notice they both seem to be having a conversation whenever I’m not around and it stops when I come back in the room.

Okay, something is DEFINITELY up. But I tell myself I’m still going to play clueless because it’d be sooo embarrassing if I’m wrong…

So we go out to eat, and we’re in a quiet booth off to the side, with no one else around us. “convenient,” I think. His sister answers for it though, even though I didn’t ask. Says she thought the people around were kind of gross and asked to be moved. So we get all the way through dinner… and dessert…  and I can see Ranger’s brother keep trying to catch Ranger’s eye.

And then I see that Ranger has a box in his hands. And I think to myself “okay, now I know what that is. But this is awkward…” So I pretend not to notice, and I cant make eye contact, I’m too nervous.

And so is he

And I hate awkward moments.

So I pretend to be super interested in what his sister-in-law has to say.

And I guess it was too much for Ranger, because he sort of drops the box in front of me, like “here, take it.” It was so cute because it was so awkward. I guess that’s fitting, because that’s how Ranger’s been all along. So awkward it’s cute. Maybe awkward isn’t the right word, nervous is better. Obvious about his intentions, but nervous.

Well of course I open it. And he gets on one knee. And says “will you marry me?”

And just like me, to make things more complicated in a nervous situation, I say, “that’s all you have to say? No name or anything?”

So he says “Keira, will you marry me?”

Charming. It’s a good thing he’s so cute when he’s nervous…

I asked him later. He was so nervous and he couldn’t remember my maiden name, (and I bet he didn’t know if he should use it or not, anyway) so he just said “Keira.”

Dec 31, 2010. The night I got engaged. Ranger doesn’t want his pic on the blog, so this is all you get. A big ol’ pic of me.

Well OBVIOUSLY I said yes.

Obviously.

And then Ranger’s brother says “Dad sent me a text as you were leaving, he said you were so nervous!” Like we couldn’t tell. And I loved every minute of it.

All that, and we didn’t even get a free dessert!

Throwback cont: Part 3: Service is My Love Language

So I wasn’t convinced at first. And I was even LESS convinced to ADMIT I was convinced. But I confess that I was slowly changing my mind. I was so guarded, to be sure. Very precautious. In fact, I probably would have never even entertained the thought had it not been for the feeling that I should.

I don’t know what compelled me to ask him for help one night. I was working on a project for wedding planning, and normally would have done it all myself (which usually turns out to be a disaster because I’m only one person. Bad habit, I guess. I’m just used to having to take care of my own projects). I guess because I knew he’d ask to come over anyway, and I didn’t want to say I was busy (something else I wasn’t ready to admit to myself, yet), I took the initiative and actually asked him. He said “sure, I’d love to,” and even went that extra mile to bring me a table! I’m telling you, I bossed him around all night (in a nice, “I really need you to do this for me” sort of way) and he didn’t once get mad, didn’t once say “do it yourself,” didn’t once say “this is your project, YOU do it.” I’d ask him to do something, and as simple as that, he’d do it. And let me just say, that is a BIG deal. I’ve never known that kind of attitude. I don’t mean to bash my ex, but I need you to understand that EVERY time I had a project going on, I did it myself. I set up my own bridal fairs, I decorated the weddings by myself. I went to the store at 2 am because I needed something I didn’t have, by myself. If I had a project, I did it alone. And if I needed help, He’d say “this is your project, you do it.” And I was okay with that at the time, because it’s all I knew. I’m sort of an independent person. But for Ranger to just … help… Yeah, it got to me. I kept having flashes of Wesley saying “As you wish,” and it finally made sense!

“And even more amazing was the day
she realized she truly loved him back.”
That day was the day.

Throwback cont: Part 2: Who Needs Sleep?

Here’s part two in the story of how Ranger and I met.

[line]

Well, that was the end of taking pity on him, he didn’t need it any more. After Wednesday’s institute, he started texting me. By Friday, he had convinced me to let him come over after work (which seemed much longer until I looked at the calender and realized that was only 2 days…). I told him he could come over, but we had to stay outside, because B was at a sleepover. No Chaperones. You know, I had to play it safe, I’d barely met this guy a few days ago! Everyone I’d asked about him had said that he was super quiet. And I could tell he was quiet, but that didn’t stop us. We didn’t have a single awkward moment. We talked until 3. And I had a meeting at 6 in the morning! I honestly cant remember what we talked about. But I do remember it was cold. He put his arm around me to warm me up, it was sweet. Strategic, but sweet.

I still wasn’t sure what I thought about him, though. I was impressed, I liked his sincerity, but I was still far from being convinced. I actually have a big list of why NOT to like him written in my journal (Remind me NEVER to let him see that…), and how he would make a great friend, but I wasn’t so sure of a relationship. I could see so many flaws in that idea. For fear of leading him on, I’d tell him how I felt on a regular basis. And he was okay with it. He was okay with the fact that he liked me more, and it didn’t scare him away, or make him try harder (than normal…), he’d just understand, and appreciate what he could get. One day he asked how I felt, and I said I respected him. Which was true. I know it wasn’t the answer he was was looking to hear, but it was the truth, and I’m not one to beat around the bush. The funny thing is, I  could tell he liked that answer more than if I’d said anything else. He sort of smiled his natural, pensive smile, and said that respect was a good place to be at. And it  was true. Respect was a good place to be at.to be continued…

Throwback: So, About That Boy

Since I’m busy unpacking, I figured I’d give a throwback post and re-publish the story of how Ranger and I met. It’s funny to re-read this because now that I know Ranger and have known him for 5 years, first impressions are often misleading. But it’s funny, anyway. This post was written 4 years ago, today. Isn’t that crazy?
[line]
Well, man, actually, but “boy” sounds better in the title.Everyone’s been asking me who this man is in my life. And, don’t get me wrong, I could talk about him all day, I just don’t. See, first of all, I don’t want to get anyone’s hopes up. Especially not mine. Secondly, the voice in my head says “be careful, be careful, be careful” and I am really already sick of hearing it from others. I mean, I realize that they just want what’s best for me, but it makes me feel like I cant make my own decision. Which is reason # 3. I have asked other people what he’s like, you know, get that broader perspective, but I wanted time to like him without others knowing so that I could get my own opinion before people were excited for me or scared for me, or encouraging or discouraging.  Anyway, for those 3 reasons, I’ve sort of been mum on the whole “Ranger” subject. And now the questions are pouring in, and I never have time to talk, and … well, I’m a girl, I like to talk. Especially about guys! :c)For Starters: How we met…

I had been going to Family Home Evenings with the singles ward for about a month. I felt like it was time to get out of my comfort zone and make some “single friends.” Well, the feeling was more like “good things are going to happen, soon, and you need to be ready. You need to be at the right place.” But I didn’t want to believe that. I was happy being single. Now, don’t get me wrong, I was eager to date, but not ready to feel anything too serious for anyone else, just yet. And then in early September, there was a fireside for young adults. I hadn’t been to one since before I got married (my ex was sooo not into that thing, and it was easier to not go than to deal with it. And I kept saying “it’s just a fireside, right?”), and decided that this would be a good step to remedy that. Besides, I was supposed to be putting myself out there, right? I walked there and arrived before the building was unlocked, and when they came to unlock it (right before it started. I was afraid I’d missed it somehow…) they were shocked, because someone had actually arrived before them. And THEN they were shocked because someone else showed up. Said it doubled their numbers on attendance! But we ended up having about 10 of us show up. I sat in the middle of the middle row. I was the first one there and that was the best seat. Then a friend of mine sat down in the same row, and then more people sat in front of us. At the last minute, this kid I didn’t know but my friend did, came in and sat down next to him. I don’t remember if my friend introduced us or not… probably. But I didn’t pay attention, he was just some kid in singles ward, and I was only lookin’ for friends. Anyway, It was an AMAZING fireside. The message really hit home. It was all about marriage and treating women with respect, and that women deserve respect, and then Elder Scott cried a little when he talked about his wife, and it was just oh so perfect! He interviewed a happily married couple, and it was a reminder to me that not only was my first marriage no where near as full of love and respect as it should have been, but that there really was an opportunity for happiness. I remember thinking it was ironic because if I were still married, I wouldn’t have had the strength to go to the fireside by myself, and there was NO way my ex would hear the message. And here I am, sitting here single, soaking up everything that was said. And loving the peace and truth I felt. And then it was over, and I had so much to think about.

As I began to walk home, in my own little world, this white pickup truck pulls over and the guy who sat next to my friend asked me if he could give me a ride. You know, because that whole fireside was on respecting women and such (come to find out, Ranger’s just that kind of guy. But there was no way I’d have gotten in his truck had I not just seen him at the fireside, and even then, if the message hadn’t said “women, let them show you respect”). So he gave me a ride. And I cant explain it. The way he looked at me… I  could tell he liked me already! I had mixed emotions about that… First of all, I didn’t want to like anyone, secondly this was a little too intense for me, thirdly, I admit I was flattered. When he dropped me off, I asked what the activity was for the next Family Home Evening. He said flag football, and I said ugh. Well, I guess I’ll go and just socialize. And he said “oh yeah, I’ll go too.” Like, he’d be watching to see if I would be there. Like he’d be there BECAUSE I’d be there. Which scared me and flattered me all at the same time.

Ironically, I had convinced my cousin to come with me to the next activity (you know, showing up with a guy to look like you’re not as single as you really are…), so he gave me a ride and we went to play flag football. Well, I’m not really athletic, and there was a little confusion so that 3 girls (me included) ended up not playing. We were all okay with it, and said we’d be the sideline. Worked for us! So I sat and talked to them the whole time, and Ranger and my cousin and a lot of other people played Flag Football. When it was all over, my cousin came back to where I was, and Ranger came up next to me, too. I confess it was a little awkward. So awkward that I introduced my cousin as “my cousin” when I’d “neglected” to introduce him that way to anyone else… It stayed awkward enough that my cousin decided he didn’t want to stay right there and went to go get my daughter from the swings where she was playing with some other kids. Ranger and I really didn’t talk much that night. First of all, everyone else was coming up to him and asking if he was okay. Apparently, he’d played tough, quite the macho teammate. They all sounded shocked and impressed (I asked my cousin about it later and he said, yeah, he did take some hits… and then look over to see if I’d noticed. I didn’t, because I wasn’t paying one bit of attention. I was busy talking to the other “sideline” girls). And also because it was sort of awkward. But he said “well, I guess since your cousin’s here, you wont need a ride home?” and I said, nope, I’ve got that covered. And he said “well, let me give you my # so you can call if you need any more rides.” And I said “oh, thanks!” and also gave him my #. I’m serious, it was so cute and so awkward at how uncomfortable he was! And then we left, he walked me to my cousin’s Jeep and opened my door so I could get in. I’ve never been escorted to another guy’s truck before! That was a little weird, but cute, too. Anyway, then I got in the car and my cousin and I joked because it was sooo obvious that this guy wanted to ask me out, and he just didn’t get to it. He even threatened to get out and tell Ranger that I was waiting for him to ask me on a date!

Well, as impatient as I am, and as much as I hate awkward situations, I blazed ahead, and on Wednesday I asked what he was doing. He said “I don’t know, why” and I said because I cant make up my mind if I’m going to go play volleyball or if I’m going to institute. Just wondered if you were going to either of them, and then I’d ask for a ride” (So forward of me! What can I say?). He said, “yeah, I’ll give you a ride.” And I said “to which one,” and he replied, “whichever one you want.” And THAT, folks, was our first date. Institute. Exciting, hu? A friend of mine was watching B, and I’d asked if she could watch her a little longer, so when Ranger asked after institute if I needed to get back right away or if we could go get a “pop” or something (I love “mountain” language. -.- ), I said we could go do something. Well, we ended up going to Idaho Falls for a soda. All the way to IF. And then we talked and walked around. And it was so weird, because I’m normally a standoffish, don’t touch me, I wont touch you kind of girl. Old scars still there, I guess. But with him, it was so easy to flirt and talk and I even touched his arm! Without thinking about it. And then thought to myself “why did I just do that? That’s totally not like me. And I’m sure it sent the wrong message. I’m sooo not wanting to get serious. And that was serious.”

To be continued…