Wow! It has been a LONG time since I’ve blogged! One of my goals for the rest of the year is to blog at least once a month. And today is the first blog to kick it off!
What a whirlwind these past 7 months have been since the start of 2020. If you’ve followed along on my Instagram over the past year or more then you may have seen that in 2019 I went through a divorce which was finalized in January 2020.
A lot of people have asked me, “isn’t it hard to photograph weddings when you are going through a divorce”, the answer is yes and no. The first wedding I shot after he moved out was difficult, I was looking at this super in love couple get married, and vow to always be there for each other through everything… and I was upset that mine fell apart. But it wasn’t hard to capture the love between the bride and groom, I love love and I love being able to capture it, and going through a divorce didn’t change that! If anything it taught me to value it even more.
As you may have also seen, this May I graduated VCU in Social Work, and got engaged! Because of the divorce and end of school I was originally planning to move back to Utah where my family lives however… since meeting Jacob those plans have changed, and for now we are staying in Virginia (but because school is over I can now travel anywhere!!!)
This is Jacob! And this is our story.
Jacob and I met in church 6 years ago, back when I first moved to Richmond to attend VCUarts. We started dating at the beginning of my second semester at VCU, and at the time I was planning on taking a 18 month break from school to serve a mission for our church. But I met Jacob and my plans changed. We pretty quickly became inseparable, he would sleep over at my house (sorry mom, you didn’t know that), cuddled up closely on my tiny little twin mattress. That spring semester was so full of love, but I still decided on leaving VCUarts, and I wound up moving to Utah, we kept dating (cause Jacob would not let me easily break up with him), and Skyped each other a lot… it’s not that I didn’t love Jacob, cause I did. But for me I felt like it wasn’t the right time for us, we both had to grow, so I ended the relationship and broke his heart.
Shortly after ending things with Jacob I met my now ex-husband. We dated, got engaged, and got married. I get asked a lot if I really felt like I was ready back then to get married so young and so fast… it’s a loaded question. I grew up in a very religious community where marriage and having a family is the main goal in life. Marriage and becoming a mom are two things I have always, always wanted. So in a lot of ways I felt like I was ready. I don’t believe you can be too young(as long as your 18+) or too old to find love and get married, or that getting married in 2 months or 8 years after meeting someone is better or worse. But at the same time I ignored the red flags that were present in the relationship before the marriage, and when I look back I don’t understand why I still got married when I knew there were issues. But despite it all, I learned and grew a lot from it. Some of the main take aways from that time are that I know what I don’t want and what I do want in a spouse. I gained the confidence to be undeniably myself and to take chances because of the new freedom that I otherwise would have never taken.
Fast forward to the separation/divorce.. I started dating again! Jacob and I met again through an LDS dating app called mutual. I messaged him first…
After catching up a little through messaging, Jacob asked if it would be weird if we grabbed dinner later that week. I asked him when he was free, and he said either that day, Thursday or Friday. I told him I was free either that day or Thursday. He responded, “Ok, how does 6pm sound?” Jacob was on call that night and found someone to cover his shift last minute so we could go on our 2nd first date.
I remember being nervous to see him again, and he was too. When we saw each other again both of us had the same thought about each other… “damn!”. We talked for hours catching up about the last 5 years. All the feelings that we had for each other came back, and we both knew we were in trouble.
A couple weeks after our “first” date, Jacob and I went to breakfast with one of his friends who took this photo of us. Looking at it again you can just see how happy we were to be together.
Over the next couple of months our feelings continued to grow (back) for one another, and soon enough I told him I loved him (might I add that I told him first both times that I loved him (6 years ago and now)… which is rare for me because I usually put up a lot of walls in relationships). Even though I knew I loved Jacob, I still wasn’t completely sure about being in a relationship with him… he wasn’t the only person at the time that I was seriously dating… I liked both of them, and I could see great futures with both of them… but in the end I followed my heart and it led me to Jacob. I have always believed God brings people into your life for a reason, and Gods timing in this was truly undeniable.
Time with Jacob felt/feels so weird, because it’s like I’ve known him forever… but there is this gap in time that I wasn’t with him… I remember crying one night about why God even let me get married to my ex when he was planning on leading me back to Jacob anyways… like what was the point of experiencing the pain of that? The answer is the reason I broke up with Jacob to begin with, we both needed time to grow and to learn in order to be the people we are today.
Last night Jacob and I had dinner with his best friend Ryan and Ryan’s dad, we were talking about our breakup 6 years ago. Ryan has known Jacob since they were kids, so I always really like hearing from his perspective looking in. Ryan said that back then when we first dated Jacob already felt/knew I was the one. Because he knew Jacob before meeting me, and then he came home from his mission after I had broken up with him (fully) and could see how truly devastated Jacob was… the only time he’s ever seen Jacob like that the entirety of knowing him.
Ryan also said that when we matched on the Mutual app, Jacob immediately called him freaking out asking what to do, and then when I messaged Jacob he called Ryan again freaking out XD… such a cutie. Ryan told me that when he saw Jacob again after our second first date, he seemed noticeably different (in a positive way). Ryan and I have talked about how much Jacob truly loves me, its an agape kind of love, total and unconditional. The kind you read about and dream about. The kind of love I’ve never had before.
Our story is not conventional, but I know God/the universe brought us back together and I feel truly blessed to have him in my life. This time I will never let him go.
Here are some photos of us from the beginning to now.